TiVo's latest battle: protecting its name

Marc Perton
M. Perton|12.14.04

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Marc Perton
December 14, 2004 7:43 AM
TiVo's latest battle:  protecting its name image
TiVo's latest battle: protecting its name image

TivoFollowing in the footsteps of companies like Google and Xerox, TiVo has declared that its name should most definitely not be used as a verb. According to The New York Times, news organizations are now getting warning letters from the company if they run articles with sentences like "don't forget to TiVo 'The Real Gilligan's Island'" (well, okay, no one's likely to use that particular sentence, but you get the idea). While we understand TiVo's fears of ending up as a generic term for DVR usage, we think it's a good thing if a company's product has so captured the public's imagination that it becomes a verb. And there are companies that agree. Apple, for example, has actively encouraged the use of iPod as a verb, as in "iPod your BMW." However, if TiVo — which has taken flak for its new advertising plans, and is losing market share to cable companies — is that concerned about maintaining brand integrity, who are we to argue? From now on when we record something on our DVR, we'll just say we're "ReplayTVing it."  Or maybe not.

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