Andy the Android Successfully Defends Himself in Court vs. Erich Specht




After having worked in the legal industry, and having a family member who is a lawyer, I've seen the ugly side to our justice system. Of course I'm aware of how most people feel about lawyers and the legal system in general, and after having experienced it first-hand much of what people perceive is justified. I can, however, attest unequivocally that not all lawyers are evil, (they do make for some pretty hilarious jokes though). Every once in a while, true justice is served, and things turn out the way they should. Just last week one of these rare instances occurred.

In April 2009, a man named Erich Specht brought a lawsuit against Google in which he claimed that Google infringed upon his trademark of the word 'Android' and he wanted a $94 Million dollar payout. The facts of this matter are that from 1998 to 2002, Mr. Specht ran a data software company called 'Android Data'. Here is a quote and a place where you can find more details from the source of this story, Techcrunch, "Specht created the Android Data Software Suite, which he licensed from 1998 through 2002 to three clients, generating some $600,000. He filed for the Trademark ANDROID DATA with the USPTO in June 2000, and it was granted in October 2002. Unfortunately 2002 proved to be a bad year for the company — all of its clients either stopped licensing the software or went under, and Android Data essentially shut down as Specht attempted to sell its assets and abandoned the Android Data mark. It lay dormant for years until someone tipped Specht off to Google’s use of “Android”, and he threw up a quick website to ‘prove’ that he was still using the mark."

This kind of lawsuit is one of the reasons why people get so angry at the legal industry, but in the long run, the lawsuit failed and justice prevailed. This is a prime example of a baseless lawsuit that is not designed to protect a company or an individual's actual assets, it is an abuse of the legal system designed to grab an 'easy' payout. Mr. Specht had given up the rights to an 'Android' trademark six years before Google ever brought out the Android smartphone. He probably hoped that Google would simply settle for a smaller amount rather than try to fight it in court. Luckily, Google didn't fall for this ruse, but instead chose to fight this nonsense.

Here's where the happy ending enters into the story. Techcrunch also reported that just last week the judge in this case, "...granted Google’s Motion for Summary Judgment to throw out the case. The judge has also canceled Specht’s original trademark, on the grounds that it could result in confusion with Google’s mark, and because Specht has already used it “as a sword” against Google." So, not only did the case get thrown out, but because Mr. Specht attempted to abuse the legal system and practically 'extort' money from Google, the judge also canceled Specht's original trademark.

Even thought it sucks that Mr. Specht could actually waste the courts' time and money, in the long run he will have to pay his own legal fees on a silly case that he lost... badly. That is a score for the good guys!

Story Source: Techcrunch
Picture Source: Gadgetell

by dgstorm
Glad to see that nonsense over with.

He was grasping at straws IMO.
Justice is blind....and was properly served in this case!
Google may have some issues down the road with bigger lawsuits, but glad to see this one was thrown out!
I bet Spetcht is made he didn't hold on to that trademark, or he might've have had a case, haha.
The Judge should have ruled it a frivolous lawsuit when first filed, and if they guy still took it to court, should have been required to pay Google's attorney fees and all court costs.

Even if Justice was served, Google and the courts had to spend their or taxpayer's money on this, and that is the main problem with any court system.
"Android Data"?

Mr. Specht is lucky he didn't get sued by Paramount studios. I mean, everyone knows Data is an Android. :)
Awesome, he is lucky they don't hit him back in return for the inconvenience!
Awesome, he is lucky they don't hit him back in return for the inconvenience!

That's exactly what we need, another inane corporate lawsuit.

I agree there should be penalties for using the justice system like your own racketeering ring, but those penalties should not be meted out by corporate interests. Especially spiteful ones.
lol @ wanting $94 Million. how could you even justify that number? maybe if he had requested a somewhat reasonable number in the small tens of millions, he would have had a chance of getting something.

still an abuse of the court system so i wouldnt condone what he did in ANY way. just saying you need to use some common sense if youre gonna try and rip someone off..which is almost an oxymoron, but i guess it could be done.