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  1. maybe the server automatically shuts down at 250,000 unique users!
    i dunno, i’m usually all for the little guy standing up to the big bad oppressor, but this one’s not sitting right with me. even that starbucks/haidabucks debacle wasn’t what it seemed to be. why didn’t anyone mention the fact that the haida bucks logo is an obvious rip-off of starbucks? hmmm…
    nothing is what it seems today!

  2. 250’000 people means it isn’t uber secret anymore Davin. I’m going to report you to the trade descriptions people!!!!

  3. I agree, this Mike Rowe thing doesn’t sit right with me either. Usually, I’m like Julie, and side with the little guy. But the fact that this Mike Rowe tried to swindle $10,000 out of MS just for his phonetic domain name makes it seem like he is just out to make some easy cash from the big guy. Anyways, I still haven’t been able to reach his website because it is always down. Oh well.

  4. swindle? he just wanted to keep the domain, actually, and then they offered him $10. hardly swindling. it’s worth a lot more than $10,000 now that he’s gotten all this exposure now, too.

  5. I think they’re both doing just fine now… They’ll settle for something, he’ll get fame and Microsoft will get exclusivity of their name. I don’t know the details but using exposure of another name and significance for one’s own benefit is exactly what copywrite stands for. It was blatant, but not necessarily swindling. Mike Rowe got some fame and can possibly use this time to grab another domain and attract more attention… Microsoft had to do this to protect against other larger potentials… This is essentially class-action. Stop the spark before the fire, right?
    that is all class, tomorrow we discuss Rowe vs. Wade.

  6. actually i should have clarified. their “other” logo was quite similar, not the one on the top of their site or on their merchandise. a few months back i saw a photo on their website of the outside of the building, and there was a sign on the front that looked *suspiciously* like a starbucks logo. that photo now doesn’t have the sign on the front.
    hey, i’m not crazy! the latest letter from the starbucks lawyers: “Specifically, we note from photos on your client’s web site that it has removed the signage previously affixed to the front of its café which included elements of similarity with Starbucks registered logo design. We also note that your client does not display the former logo anywhere on its website and, in fact, seems to have adopted a new non-infringing logo.”
    in the letter following, haidabucks claims this isn’t true. i saw that logo, and it was definitely a rip-off.
    re: mike rowe. if i were microsoft, i would not offer him a dime and let him keep his domain. it’s not even close to being copyright infringement, but it’s definitely riding coat tails. who cares!? let him have the domain!!

  7. craig.. good points.. but i agree with julie.. who in the hell is going to type in “” and hire mike to do a web design for them by accident instead of buying Microsoft Office? it would be a problem if mike were to start selling MikeRoweSoft office, haha.. but really. come on.

  8. Yes, they offered him $10 – the same price it cost him to purchase the domain. When he said he wanted $10k, that was breaking the law because domain squatting is illegal (you can’t buy a domain name that should belong to a well known business based on the copyright name, and then demand huge amounts of money for it). Of course, you could do this in the olden days of the internet – and many people did. Obviously, the big debate here is whether “” really falls under the copyright of mircrosoft – I’m no law expert but this does sound a bit ridiculous.
    Anyways, wheter or not Mr. Mike Rowe bought this domain name with the goal of selling it to MS for a large sum of money is unkown, but I think it is clear that he did do it to get attention. I guess I’m just not a big fan of those who do things like this simply for fame and attention. Of course, I could be wrong, and maybe he just did it to try and be witty or whatever, and then this whole thing blew up on him out of no where. In that case, my foot will be securely lodged in my mouth.

  9. yeah, that’s what I meant – it had nothing to do with design, davin. It was about getting attention. Attention on the back of Microsoft’s name and brand. He even admitted that it would be funny to have a site like that. Regardless of whether he is a programmer (which he’s not) or a football player (which he’s not) he was getting attention from microsoft. That’s copyright infringement.

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