Web x, where x != 2.0

Regarding the O’Reilly/CMP “Web 2.0 (SM)” trademark shitstorm, Sean McGrath humourously suggested a workaround — using a different revision number instead of “2.0”, specifically e, 2.71….

However, it’s not quite that simple in many jurisdictions, apparently. It seems that trademark law — in the US, at least — allows trademarks which include a number to also cover uses within roughly plus or minus 10 of that number. In other words, CMP’s application will cover the range from Web -8.0 (SM) (assuming negative numbers are included?) to Web 12.0 (SM).

So much for “Web 3.0”, “Web 2.1”, “Web 2.71…”, and so on. Back to the drawing board, Sean! ;)

(disclaimer: IANAL, of course. Credit to Craig for that tidbit.)

Update: doh, got the value of e wrong…

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  1. Daniel Lin
    Posted June 2, 2006 at 14:45 | Permalink

    Shouldn’t it be 2.71828182835_ anyways?

  2. Posted June 2, 2006 at 15:20 | Permalink

    Okay new tack, reverse it. So now we have BEW 2.0. (pronounced b’you). From now on all websites will be identified by the standard bbb prefix, hence bbb.taint.org.

    W3C becomes B3C and finally B2B and B2C fall become meaningful terms.

    Finally we could make everybody say Burld, Bide, Beb instead of world wide web,

    Ok, time for my medication….

    :-) :-)

  3. Posted June 2, 2006 at 15:41 | Permalink

    I guess I was the one who mentioned the thing about +/- 10 — that is my understanding based on looking with my dad at migrating his “Detox5” business from the UK to the US. But I think it applies to integers — so it’s not clear is Web 2.0 would cover Web -8.0 through 12.0 or Web 2.-10 through Web 2.10

    Since lawyers deal in text, I think you could probably argue that 2.718… was actually a really really large number (plus an ellipsis) appended onto the end of the string, and not merely the addition of a sub-integer number.

  4. Posted June 2, 2006 at 15:52 | Permalink

    Daniel — doh!

    yep, you’re right — corrected…

  5. Posted June 2, 2006 at 18:12 | Permalink

    WD-41, on sale, cheap!

    Trademark law will also get you in trouble if you use something that real-world customers could confuse with a trademark. So if you called a conference “Web 3.0”, many people would think “oh, that’s the next year of the Web 2.0 conference I went to last year”.

  6. Posted June 3, 2006 at 03:37 | Permalink

    Yeah, but “Web e” at least has some prior art in the form of some awards contest…

  7. Posted June 3, 2006 at 07:33 | Permalink

    I wonder who’s going to trademark Web² (SM) ? I bet that’s outside the scope of their trademark since squared is not a separate version number and is a single element design. Well you know what, I’d also call this prior art on the idea.

    Web² (SM) Web³ (SM)

    Web¹³ (SM) will probably be a bit of a letdown. :-) (sup tags not working here J, looks like the symbols bork someting too)

    &copy 2006;

  8. Posted June 3, 2006 at 07:38 | Permalink

    I’ve got it! We could call it Web^100! I figure “Web” is somewhere on the order of 10, so we’ll call it Googol for short!

    Wait, why are you all looking at me like that?

  9. Posted June 3, 2006 at 08:12 | Permalink

    lol in that case – We’re on Web^2006 now or is it Web^XP ?

    … I’ll get my coat too. Cab for C&K please :)