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Nexus One Name Irks Philip K. Dick's Estate 506

Posted by samzenpus
from the acting-like-a-dick dept.
RevWaldo writes "According to the Wall Street Journal, the estate of Philip K. Dick says the name of Google's new smartphone infringes on the famous character name from Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?. Isa Dick Hackett, a daughter of Mr. Dick, states Google has its 'Android system, and now they are naming a phone "Nexus One." It's not lost on the people who are somewhat familiar with this novel... Our legal team is dealing head-on with this.'"
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Nexus One Name Irks Philip K. Dick's Estate

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  • I read about this almost a month ago in the New York Times blogs [nytimes.com] and must point out one very important detail (to me at least) about this case that was not present in The Wall Street Journal article: Google applied for a trademark on "NEXUS ONE" [uspto.gov]. Now it's not even assigned to an examining attorney yet but come on. You can 'borrow' something from a novel but if you're going to be making money, hand over fist, with it you should probably get permission. And then on top of that you go after the trademark si
    • by Tomun (144651) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:01AM (#30681234)

      The same name can be held as a trademark by different entities if the usages don't conflict.

      I see no problem here.

      • by dunkelfalke (91624) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:10AM (#30681308)

        Yep, here [mexned.nl] is a fine example of it

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Sockatume (732728)

        Dick wasn't even using it as a trademark, to boot - it wasn't the title of a novel.

      • by Ceriel Nosforit (682174) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:26AM (#30681454)

        I see two problems, one is greed and the other is the brain damage the lawyers must have incurred in not recognizing the simple fact you stated.
        That, or they know about it and their greed feeds off the greed of the PKD silverspoons.

        If not, I'll start googling every cool word combination I've ever used online and start demand royalties. Knowing a bit about authorship, PKD probably shat them out on an assembly line and would put the spoiled brats he left behind over his knee if he found out about this, if for nothing else than their lack of imagination.

        • by $lashdot (472358) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @11:12AM (#30683498) Journal

          their greed feeds off the greed of the PKD silverspoons.

          I think that if you'd bother to read about his life you'll find that PKD kids were not "silver spoons." In his lifetime, Dick won awards but was plagued by financial difficulties. Only one film based on a work of his was ever greenlighted during his lifetime, and he died four months before it was released. The financial success of PKD works is all post-mortem, and is largely the result of his estate successfully licensing his works as his works have become marketable later on.

          In other words, the heirs you criticize were not born with silver spoons in their mouths; they were born to a writer who was unknown outside of the science fiction community, who hadn't had mainstream success, and took loans from other writers just to get by. His children did not grow up in wealth, living off a successful, creative father who sent them to boarding school, etc. It is because there have been films since Blade Runner, that the works of PKD have enjoyed success outside of the pages of science fiction magazines.

          This doesn't make the PKD heirs' lawsuit right in this case, but you can't put them in the same boat as say the heirs of the Walt and Roy O. Disney, both of whom were ridiculously financially successful within their own lifetime and were able to pass on that fortune to their children, such as the late Roy E. Disney.

      • by ShinmaWa (449201) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:43AM (#30681586)

        True, but it's not even the same name. The book refers to the replicants as "Nexus-6" models. This is the "Nexus One" phone.

        Would an average person think that the estate of Philip K. Dick endorses the phone based on that? Highly, highly unlikely.

        • by TheRaven64 (641858) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @09:04AM (#30681802) Journal
          The book refers to several of the Nexus series, although the main focus is on the latest generation. Oh, and the book doesn't call them replicants at all, that term was invented by the movie. The book calls them androids or andys.
          • by Entrope (68843) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @09:34AM (#30682136) Homepage

            Trademark law is intended to protect consumers against confusion about, or misrepresentation of, the origin or endorsement of a product or service. Except for fanciful marks, trademark law tends to separate fields of endeavor, so that (for example) an arbitrary or suggestive trademark for film media does not clash with the same word used as an arbitrary or suggestive trademark for tax preparation services.

            PKD's estate has a long row to hoe in arguing that consumers might confuse Dick's name for a kind of humanoid robot with Google's name for a kind of mobile phone. This is especially true because those who are familiar with the former are more likely to be well-informed about the provenance of, and who has (or hasn't) endorsed, the latter.

          • by RingDev (879105)

            Dick's estate doesn't have a trademark on "Nexus One". So it doesn't matter if people "get them confused". The estate has copy rights over the books. Google would not be able to reproduce that book with out the estate's permission. But in this case, Google isn't reproducing their book, they aren't copying the protected material. So there is no infringement.

            Unless you are arguing that every proper noun ever used in any copy right protected creation is also protected against trademarks.

            -Rick

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by bcmm (768152)
        See also: Ubuntu Cola [aberguild.co.uk].
    • by TapeCutter (624760) * on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:01AM (#30681238) Journal
      Yes, the headline should read - Google rips off Dick.
    • by Bottles (1672000) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:02AM (#30681242)

      Longest first post evar?!

      You type fast. Very fast. Too fast, perhaps. That makes me suspicious.

      Can you look into this Voight-Kampff machine, please, and tell me only the good things about your mother?

    • So, what about USRobotics then?

      • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

        by patSPLAT (14441)

        At least US Robotics isn't attacking all business models in media industries. Google's attitude of a.) f*** the publishers and b.) f*** the authors is a curious one for an advertising company. They have no good will or benefit of the doubt in a case like this one.

      • by Xiaran (836924)
        I'd be more concern about these guys [skynetworldwide.com]
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Canazza (1428553)

        US Robotics named themselves after the Fictional Company (See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/U.S._Robotics [wikipedia.org] , and also the foreword to one of Asimov's books. I think it was 'The Complete Robot')

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by Totenglocke (1291680)

          Then there's also the tech company Cyberdyne, which was named after the company in Terminator. I don't see anyone complaining about that.

          The words "android" and "nexus" are so ingrained in pop culture (well, for sci-fi stuff anyways) that you don't have to have ever read anything by PKD or even know he exists and you'll know the words if you're a nerd / geek. The PKD estate doesn't have an actual case and it's just another sad tale of kids, grandchildren, and great grandchildren wanting to sue anyone and

    • by Rysc (136391) * <sorpigal@gmail.com> on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:07AM (#30681274) Homepage Journal

      It's still a homage. Not having a trademark on the name of a consumer electronics device is just plain stupid, business-wise. I don't think that sales of the book will be harmed by this, nor do I expect that there will be any confusion over which is which. In a good society with good laws there's no way the Dick estate would be able to get a dime or force any change based on this. Nobody asks for permission from Karel apek or his estate before calling something a robot, even though it's a clear reference, and I don't see why this should be any different.

      The case of Droid is very different in that there really was an existing trademark and, though it would likely be legal use the name in another field, it's always (legally) safer to get permission.

      • by Pedrito (94783) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:30AM (#30681482) Homepage
        I don't think that sales of the book will be harmed by this, nor do I expect that there will be any confusion over which is which.

        Well, you're wrong. I'm never buying or reading the book now. It can't be anywhere near as good as the phone.
        • by elocinanna (1640479) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:43AM (#30681590)
          "Hey you should really read this book" "Nah I'm waiting for the phone to come out"
        • by neowolf (173735) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:48AM (#30681644)
          This is really stupid. If anything, it might renew interest in a relatively obscure (for younger people) book. Now, it will just result in backlash as people will refuse to buy anything from Dick now. The estate has no real legal ground to stand on, and has now shot itself in the foot. Bravo!
          • by digitig (1056110) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @09:00AM (#30681770)
            I'm not sure the estate has shot itself in the foot. If people didn't already know the book they wouldn't have known the reference, so it wouldn't have renewed interest in the book. Now they are much more likely to become aware of the book, and the extra publicity is likely to far outweigh any boycott. If (as seems likely to me, but IANAL) the estate has no legal ground, who cares? This wasn't necessarily about winning the case.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by patSPLAT (14441)

        Authors and Publishers (and their estates) prefer their homages to be paid with $$$. Since they aren't Silicon Valley startups publicity doesn't have the same value.

      • by slim (1652)

        I don't think that sales of the book will be harmed by this, nor do I expect that there will be any confusion over which is which.

        Devil's advocate:
        It could be argued that the Google phone name interferes with the Dick estate's ability to, in future, endorse the "official cellphone of the book/film".

        A stretch, yes, but that's how lawyers think.

        • by Rysc (136391) *

          Since we're being lawyers I will argue that the book is not titled "Android" and that a "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?" model, or brand, of phone would be sufficiently different to the average consumer that no confusion would result.

          • by Plunky (929104)
            Hm, can you get an "Electric Sheep" screensaver for the android phone? I wonder how many PKD fans would buy one of those..
      • by mcgrew (92797) *

        Nobody asks for permission from Karel apek or his estate before calling something a robot

        And nobody asks Isaac Asimov's widow if they can use the word "robotics". I agree, this is stupid.

        • by Svartalf (2997) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @09:17AM (#30681926) Homepage

          Actually, the word "robot" may well have been first coined in a play written by Karl Capeck in 1927, in Russums Universal Robots (or R.U.R.)- even though Russum's robots would be more along the lines of the "androids" in Dick's story.

          Nobody, not even Dick, asked around to see if they needed permission from Capek for that stuff.

          Mainly because they didn't NEED it.

          Heh... It's even more entertaining what they're doing here...

          A TESS search, while not 100% conclusive, shows 41 differing uses of the word "Android" as a trademark or part thereof, with the first usage, though dead, going back to 1959, registered in 1962 as a branding of a medicine from the Brown Pharmaceutical Company- from the TESS database entry on it:

          IC 005. US 018. G & S: COMBINATION OF TESTOSTERONE, THYROID, GLUTAMIC ACID AND THIAMINE HCI IN TABLET FORM. FIRST USE: 19590400. FIRST USE IN COMMERCE: 19591100

          Google seems to be the only registrant for "Nexus One"- but all THAT really is would be a combining of two common words to represent a branding of a phone. From Dictionary.com:

          nexus /nkss/ :
          –noun, plural nexuses, nexus.
          1. a means of connection; tie; link.
          2. a connected series or group.
          3. the core or center, as of a matter or situation.
          4. Cell Biology. a specialized area of the cell membrane involved in intercellular communication and adhesion.

          one /'wuhn'/ :

          –noun
          10. the first and lowest whole number, being a cardinal number; unity.
          11. a symbol of this number, as 1 or I.
          12. a single person or thing: If only problems would come one at a time!
          13. a die face or a domino face having one pip.
          14. a one-dollar bill: to change a five-dollar bill for five ones.
          15. (initial capital letter) Neoplatonism. the ultimate reality, seen as a central source of being by whose emanations all entities, spiritual and corporeal, have their existence, the corporeal ones containing the fewest of the emanations.

          Simply put, there's really little to nothing for the Dick Estate to "protect" here- and I question the wisdom of the same to allow a batch of lawyers make themselves look the fool at their expense.

      • So very true. I mean, it's been a while since I read the book (or saw the movie), but I don't seem to remember ANY mention of anything prior to Nexus 6. It's implied, I suppose, but it's not mentioned. So if there's no MENTION in his work of Nexus 1 relating to REPLICANTS (not Androids... he doesn't use that term either, IIRC), how is someone going to say "oh, I remember Nexus 6! This must be PKD's phone!" Sorry, Ms. hyphenated Dick... no reasonable person is going to look at a mobile phone and somehow
    • by Aranykai (1053846) <slgonser@@@gmail...com> on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:10AM (#30681310)

      If they didn't trademark it, there would be hundreds of Chinese made rip-offs in months. You clearly don't understand how trademarks work.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      These aren't the Droids you're looking for.

    • by khallow (566160) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:19AM (#30681390)
      I don't see the problem. There is no trademark by the Dick estate. There is no copyright or trademark infringement by Google even if Nexus One had been trademarked. And it cheeses off little people such as yourself and the parasites feeding off of the Dick estate. There's no downside.
    • by thetoadwarrior (1268702) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:29AM (#30681470) Homepage
      It depends on what they registered the trademark for. You don't register a trademark and then it's good for everything. You have to select usages and the more you pick the more it costs.

      Philip K Dick did not invent the term Android or even Nexus. The name Nexus One may be a nod towards Nexus 6 but they aren't the same and one is for a mobile phone and one is a fictional character.

      I don't side with them because for starters its not the creator that's complaining. It's his lecherous kids who are just being greedy. They see the Android platform taking off, they're used to getting money for doing nothing (thanks to daddy) so they think they're owed a piece of Google's business.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by mcgrew (92797) *

      Now I know why "You're a Dick" is such an insult.

      In the first place, these people shouldn't even be able to hold copyright (maybe... are these Dicks American?). The constitution says congress can grant a limited time monopoly to authors and inventors. NOT their heirs.

      In the second place, you can't copyright a name. I should write a story with characters from all the books of dead authors whose greedy estates want copyright on them, and let these Dicks sue me.

      I'm... I can't think of the proper adjective. "An

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Aranykai (1053846)

        Trademark, not copyright. Copyright protects ideas, methods and invention. Trademark protects product names, product appearances and slogans used in advertising said product.

        Copyright is established automatically, trademark must be registered for a fee.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by TheRaven64 (641858)
          No, trademarks do not need to be registered, just claimed. If you register a trademark (in the US) then you have some extra protections, but this does not apply in a lot of other jurisdictions.
      • by elrous0 (869638) * on Thursday January 07, 2010 @09:23AM (#30681994)
        Actually, "You're a Harlan Ellison" would be a MUCH worse insult. I'm just surprised Mr. Sue-Happy hasn't gotten in with his own lawsuit, claiming that the cellphone was his idea, from one of his crappy TV scripts in the 60's.
    • by dschuetz (10924)

      Is "Nexus-1" trademarked? Does it actually appear in the story? Does it refer to a phone?

      All those are (I'd expect) no. I doubt Dick (or his estate) trademarked Nexus, and I don't think that Nexus-1 was ever mentioned in the book (though some might guess as to its existence because of Nexus-6 in the book. but even that's not guaranteed -- were there really 6099 other models before the Binford 6100?). And in the book, it refers to replicants, not to telephones.

      "But wait, the telephone here runs an operating

    • by itsdapead (734413) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:58AM (#30681750)

      Even Motorola had the wherewithal to kindly ask Lucas before using Droid as a name for their phone because 'droid' is a registered trademark of Lucasfilm Ltd.

      The clue is in the part of your own post starting "because" - even then, its debatable as to whether that trademark would apply to anything other than plush R2D2 toys.

      Google applied for a trademark on "NEXUS ONE" [uspto.gov].

      Yup - "Nexus 1". Not "Nexus 6". Its a dictionary word and a number. I Googled for "Nexus" and get the Tyne and Wear public transportation system, a Christian music school, a dating agency, a production company and a sponsored link to Amazon leading to a whole bunch of rather pornographic looking novels. No Dick (at least of the Philip K variety).

      Now, if Google had jumped straight to "Nexus 6", launched an ad campaign featuring Rutger Hauer, and offered a free lead codpiece or a $100 mail-in rebate on a genuine goat, there might have been a case.

      (Push your eyeballs out through your ears? There's an App for that!)

      Where do you suppose it should stop? Should Red Hat need Paramount's permission for "Red Hat Enterprise Linux" - or Nokia for the "Nokia Communicator"? Is "Heroes" ripping off Neal Stevenson by having a character punnily named "Hiro"?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:00AM (#30681228)

    Give me free money!

  • by RedMountain (69974) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:08AM (#30681290)

    It's a freaking WORD. It comes from the DICTIONARY.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by vagabond_gr (762469)

      So is "apple", would you name your new phone like that?

      Trademarks is all about registering common words for business purposes. And it makes some sense (at least much more than patents or copyright).

      • by loftwyr (36717) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:35AM (#30681522)

        No but Apple is a trademark in the computer hardware arena. "Nexus-6" is a fictional android in one book and movie,

        I have a strong suspicion that the developers would have little to no idea that Nexus (centerpoint) One (first) was anything but how they felt about a phone. I think the PKD estate is groping for money and this suit, if it materializes, will be laughed out of court.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by Rockoon (1252108)

          I have a strong suspicion that the developers would have little to no idea that Nexus (centerpoint) One (first) was anything but how they felt about a phone.

          Until you factor in that they also got their Android, which in combination is definitely suspiciously like they are deliberately naming things based on the book.

          Each in isolation are fairly innocent. But together, they indicate intent.

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Rogerborg (306625)

        So is "apple", would you name your new phone like that?

        No, but I might name a brand of beach towels Apple, or ski boots, and what exactly would Apple Inc. or Apple Corps Ltd (remember them?) do about it?

        Trademarks is all about registering common words for specific business purposes.

        There, fixed that for you. To clarify, and I'll type this really slowly to make it easy for you to understand: a novel is not a phone.

      • There was an issue with Apple Computer's name and logo being too similar to that of the Beatles' Apple Corps. There was basically a "we're cool with it" agreement so long as Apple Computer stayed out of the music business and Apple Corps stayed out of the computer business. And then the iPod came out..

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apple_Corps_v._Apple_Computer [wikipedia.org]

  • Too Far (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:09AM (#30681298)

    This has gone way too far, in two ways. One, we are not talking about a book, we are talking about a WORD. Two, Philip's heirs should not earn ongoing profits from work done by Philip a generation ago. Has their income incentivized them to produce anything noteworthy themselves? I think not; in direct contradiction to the whole point of congress's authority to assign limited monopolies.

    Google should do two things. The should fight this in the courts, but much more importantly, they should use their considerable resources and clout to lobby congress to update the legal framework such that it encourages, rather than hinders, innovation in the sciences and the useful arts. Congress, elected by the people, has the last word on this one.

    • by sznupi (719324)

      Though some copyright holders could argue, and not without some merit, that it falls under similar care for your descendants as...everybody does. Even if it's usually by the method of "good" home & education (which in turn assures good living standards for your grandkids, and so on)

  • It is generic word (Score:4, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:11AM (#30681328)
  • Estate (Score:5, Insightful)

    by alewar (784204) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:13AM (#30681342)
    Philip Dick has been dead for more than 20 years, time for his family to stop parasitizing on his success.
  • by bradley13 (1118935) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:16AM (#30681366) Homepage
    Given that he has been dead for 28 years, his works should be in the public domain. Then there would be no dispute.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by EyelessFade (618151)
      Indeed, the copyright laws of today is just insane.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by exa (27197)

      I wonder if Isa is good in bed. Because whenever I'm reading Dick, I'll feel like I'm effing her from now on.

  • by Mystery00 (1100379) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:25AM (#30681440)
    I'm now copyrighting NEXUS TWO, NEXUS THREE and NEXUS FOUR by using these in my post.

    When Google brings out next generations of its phone, I'll sue them and become rich!

    You gotta think ahead.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Everybody knows that the Nexus series will only take off with nexus-6 which will be virtually indistinguishable from an iPhone and contain DRM!

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by cerberusss (660701)

      I'm now copyrighting NEXUS TWO, NEXUS THREE and NEXUS FOUR by using these in my post.

      You idiot. Google of course sticks to the One True Versioning Scheme: the Naked Gun [wikipedia.org] versioning scheme. The next version will be the:
      Google Nexus 2 1/2
      Google Nexus 33 1/3

  • by bradley13 (1118935) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:25AM (#30681442) Homepage

    Some copyright attorney must be reading /.

    As of a few seconds ago there were 30 replies, of which four or five said that the heirs should no longer be profiting from the copyrights, since Philip K. Dick is long dead. All of those posts have been marked "troll".

    Would our budding copyright attorney like to explain this? Guess what: "troll" is not a substitute for "disagree".

    • by Late Adopter (1492849) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @11:53AM (#30684138)
      Those posts are *certainly* (-1, Offtopic), given that the copyright status is irrelevant to determining a trademark dispute. Even if others should be able to sell Dick's works, that doesn't mean the original rightsholder would stop, and therefore a potential trademark dispute would be just as relevant (the merits of such a dispute aside).

      Taking it a step further, since those posts aren't on topic in the first place, trying to bring them up in a forum where you know many people already have a strong interest and emotional association with the current state of copyright, such a comment elicits attention, distracting from the original discussion. That's trolling, although almost certainly unintentional.
  • This is shameful (Score:5, Insightful)

    by genmax (990012) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:29AM (#30681474)

    The people on whom the connection is not lost, would see this as a tribute from Google to Philip K. Dick. It would be sad if this sort of unbridled greed on the part of some discourages companies and people from expressing their admiration for the contributions of others.

    I do not have a problem with an author's children trying to assert their legal rights --- but this would've been as wrong if the author himself had talked about suing. There is really no reason, legal or otherwise, for Google to be paying money to the Dick foundation. Trademark laws do not apply here. And, does anyone think the name is going to "help" Nexus / Android sales ? Or that there will be people who will buy the nexus thinking it is a Dick novel ? Is Google really profiting or abusing Dick's IP ? Are book sales going to be affected ?

    • by Rysc (136391) *

      Is Google really profiting or abusing Dick's IP

      Insert howls of juvenile laughter here.

      This topic is awesome.

  • They should be suing the Star Trek franchise as well for using the term Nexus in Generations. They obviously made MILLIONS from that movie...
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by itsdapead (734413)

      They should be suing the Star Trek franchise as well for using the term Nexus in Generations.

      They'd have to stand in line behind the estate of E.E. "Doc" Smith who, on that basis, should be owed something for "tractor beam" (and probably other space-opera jargon).

  • Good luck (Score:4, Insightful)

    by MikeRT (947531) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:31AM (#30681496) Homepage
    I think they're going to have a hard time making that case since so few people will make the connection. Dick is not one of those authors whose works are so familiar to the general public that there is likely to be any mental connection between the average person visiting a T-Mobile store and thinking about buying an Android phone and Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep.
    • I think they're going to have a hard time making that case since so few people will make the connection. Dick is not one of those authors whose works are so familiar to the general public that there is likely to be any mental connection between the average person visiting a T-Mobile store and thinking about buying an Android phone and Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep.

      I might agree with you if they'd named their new phone the Ubik or something like that...

      But they chose a reference that the average person just might get - seeing as Blade Runner is a fairly well-known movie.

  • by unity100 (970058) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:34AM (#30681512) Homepage Journal

    for, they sure know how to behave like one as a family.

    ah and, fuck trademarks. with this stupid mindset, in 50 years time we will run out of words and phrases to name things. and, given the possibility of infringing on someone's 'rights', we will probably be start refraining from using those words during ordinary talks in daily life.

    this has to stop before it gets to that point.

  • In related news... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by spywhere (824072) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:36AM (#30681534)
    ...Isaac Asimov's bloated corpse is suing over the Japanese robot named Asimo.
  • Corporate Darwinism (Score:5, Interesting)

    by zuki (845560) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:47AM (#30681632) Journal
    Without wanting to add too much to the anti-copyright vituperations, has anyone considered how difficult it must truly be for a lawyer sensing a great case such as this one, with hundreds of billable hours (regardless of the outcome) to refrain themselves from telling their clients that serving papers to one of the planet's largest corporate behemoths is the only option, when in reality they pretty much know that they are guaranteed to lose the case but will still manage to milk the estate for plenty of money by going that route, and that this will be the closest they'll ever come to being 'cool with the in crowd' ?

    How Darwinian! In that sense,they are taking the role of parasite, which as we all know is necessary for the ecosystem to function properly.
  • Conversely... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by elocinanna (1640479)
    If Google loses they could sue the dictionaries for including their trademark! http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/GOOGLE [merriam-webster.com]
  • How about this... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by RevWaldo (1186281) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @08:56AM (#30681734)
    Free digital copy of "Blade Runner" with every Nexus One (director's cut, of course). Google gets to demo the phones' video chops and gets the coolness cred, PKD's heirs get a chunk of the royalties. Win-win.
  • Fuck the estate (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Ralph Spoilsport (673134) on Thursday January 07, 2010 @09:12AM (#30681890) Journal
    Bunch of god damn parasites. PKD is DEAD. In my view that leaves his work should be public domain. Is that the law? No, the law presently favours the leeches, the parasites, the lawyers. I'm no big fan of Google as a company, but I say "go for it, Google". Fuck these people. PKD is dead. None of the people involved had anything to do with his writing or work or creativity. They are leeches existing at the pig trough of Imaginary Property rights. In a more just society they would be burned as devils.
  • by Wonko the Sane (25252) * on Thursday January 07, 2010 @09:31AM (#30682106) Journal

    Why produce something new youeself when you can extort from those who are?

  • by mattOzan (165392) <(ten.nazottam) (ta) (olsupsiv )> on Thursday January 07, 2010 @12:23PM (#30684604) Homepage Journal

    You won't even be allowed to possess the sixth version of this Nexus phone on the planet Earth. It will only be for use in the off-world colonies.

    Special Verizon squads have orders to destroy, upon detection, any Nexus Six phone. This is called "retirement," and is not covered under warranty.

"In the face of entropy and nothingness, you kind of have to pretend it's not there if you want to keep writing good code." -- Karl Lehenbauer

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