Apple says Norway’s Progress Party’s logo might be confused with its own, objects to trademark

“In a relatively rare action, Apple in February filed an official objection with the Norwegian Industrial Property Office opposing the registration of a trademark affiliated with that country’s Progress Party, or Fremskrittspartiet, claiming the logo is too similar to its own well-known mark,” Mikey Campbell reports for AppleInsider.

“Apple claims the political party’s mark could be confused with five of its own registered trademarks,” Campbell reports. “Further, the logo resembles or incorporates elements of well-known, established branding and is thus in violation of Norway’s Trade Marks Act.”

“Registered with the Norwegian Industrial Property Office last November, Fremskrittspartiet’s trademark overlays stylized ‘FR’ iconography on a large red apple, complete with black stem and green leaf,” Campbell reports. “The design is reminiscent of Apple’s trademark, a two-dimensional rendering of an archetypal apple silhouette. ”

Fremskrittspartiet's trademark was registered in Norway in November.
Fremskrittspartiet’s trademark was registered in Norway in November.

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: As we wrote nearly a decade ago:

Apple must protect its logo – a logo the company has spent millions upon millions of dollars to establish – or risk setting a precedent to which future trademark infringers of one of the world’s most-recognizable logos could point, along with exposing one of the world’s top brands to unknown future damages. Apple is right to zealously protect their logo. — MacDailyNews, April 3, 2008

Apple files for trademark to protect the Apple logo’s leaf – yes, just the leaf – December 4, 2012
Apple threatens lawsuit against New York City for copyright infringement of Apple logo – April 3, 2008


    1. The Snake is absolutely correct.

      FACT: There are hundreds of thousands of perfectly LEGAL logos out there that USE an apple as the MAIN visual element and will not be found guilty of plagiarism or a trademark violation.

      We have NOT seen the “five” Apple logos they are claiming were copied. Disappointed they were not in the article, but then again par for the course for a fanboy website.

      So not having seen the “five” my take is the offending logo is nothing like the Apple logos I have seen on a Google Image Search. Flat, minimalist graphics and full of swirling rainbow psychedelic colors and distressed art.

      The logo in question is PURE Skeuomorphism, never to be confused with Apple after Jony assumed the role of designer in chief. The logo is a beautiful realistic illustration with veins in the leaf, highlights, mid tones and shadows like a classical oil painting. The leaf also overlaps the Apple, not sticking out in a roughly 25 degree position. Norwegian logo reminds me of the old illustrative banners on apple crates in Washington state.

      Again, have not seen the “five.” But what I do know is for Apple to win in court, the process is extremely simple. The jury looks at all the designs and has to decide if they look the same to render a guilty verdict.

      From what I have seen albeit limited, Apple may be up a creek without a paddle…

  1. Given Fremskrittspartiet, the party owning the logo, holds the Finance Minister position in the Norwegian government, Apple should not be too Cooky.
    I am sure Apple pays disproportionately low taxes in Norway the Finance mInistry could easily conclude on.

  2. If they perceive this as such a threat, what have they done about the Applebee’s logo – if anything.

    Seems to me Applebee’s, as a commercial entity – and its single upright leaf – could more readily be construed as an infringement than a Norwegian political party – and its sole flaccid leaf.

    Not to mention it seems a bit ironic for mr. Apple to be quite so uptight about logo infringement considering their history of finagling and weaseling when it came to their relationship with the Beatles and the apple corps records logo.

    Maybe the apple lawyers don’t have enough to keep busy with their obviously less significant skirmishes with Qualcomm or samsung….

      1. As an extreme progressive myself, I think the Norwegians are to be congratulated. Of course, as an incredible artist of exquisite taste and internal fortitude, I freely offer my services in crafting a new logo.

        Progressivism – it’s okay to be progressive. It’s deranged to be a Trumpist.

        #MAPA – make America progressive again

  3. Apple is now doing to other companies what the Beatles Apple Corps did to them.

    Both were (are) nonsense. Other companies were using apples as trademarks long before Apple or the Beatles. When the last Apple Corps suits came up, I did some online research and came up with apple trademark examples that went back decades before either existed.

    No one with sight is going to confuse their trademarks.

    Not sure what interest Apple has in a mark that bears more resemblance to the generic prior art I found in my research many years ago, than to their ultra stylized graphic.

    Does Apple have political aspirations?

  4. I don’t see a “bite” out of it. And it DOES look a little like a cherry.

    In a couple of years, Amazon will be suing any company that has an “arrow” in their logo, or any logo with a smile on it.

    Come, get real. I am for protecting rights and logos, but when one picks a world wide ubiquitous object for their logo, no one has the right to ban any and all form of it. OH, I can’t use an arrow? Oh I can’t use an apple, or a smiley face? Pick a world wide common object as a logo, then expect some usage in different contexts! Use some Common Sense! (But the world has lost its common sense!)

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