1. Thanks for the great post, it's good to see a large company consider the impact of legal decisions.
2. Pooh pooh on the US trademarks office from ever allowing this to go ahead. Those cheap junk meters that look similar to a fluke are all over the world and most places the trademark protection doesn't exist. Guess what? people that want Fluke still buy Fluke and people that want cheap junk still buy cheap junk.
It's the same silly argument as recently whe Rolex had a court fine someone ~$10,000 beause they bought a $20 Rolex and imported it. That person was never going to buy a real Rolex just like a real Rolex buyer is never going to buy a knock-off. The seller sold it as a knock-off openly in Singapore where they are allowed to so no fraud was involved.
Google has trademarked "Google" yet no one there persecutes someone for googling on Yahoo.
It's high time these things start being governed by loss having occurred by the plaintif.
Hi Caleb, this is even crazier than IP protection, it's trademark protection. I don't have a problem with trademark protection mind you, just when your trade mark is "a grey case with a yellow surround" It's as crazy as T-Mobile suing everyone that uses their shade of red anywhere, I mean it's specified as a Pantone colour and Pantone has given use to rights to everyone, and then T-Mobile says no we've reserved xyz red. Here Fluke supposedly owns yellow and grey ie. about 1000 colour combinations. A company should have to be able to prove harm with this sort of gobbledygook.
I believe the color of the infringing meters was deliberately chosen, although Sparkfun was probably not aware of the trademark. I use Flukes and didn't know the coloring was protected.
However, how wide is the range of yellow that is considered to infringe on Fluke's special yellow? How many such ranges can be trademarked before no one can manufacture a solid colored meter boot without infringing on some trademark color.
I suppose at that point we move to stripes, ginghams and paisleys.