(Please) stop using our name as a verb!

Google_3
You have to feel for Michael Krantz, the writer on Google’s official blog who was charged with explaining the company’s compulsion to fight the use of the word Google as a verb. It’s a losing battle, obviously, since “Googling” has long since become part of the vernacular. But anyone with a passing knowledge of trademark law knows Google has to defend its trademark or go the way of Xerox and Kleenex into what the legal eagles call “genericity.” But how does a corporation with a market cap of $146 billion tell people, in a nice way, not to devalue its brand? Krantz’s effort is an awkward read—lots of forced jokes, tough stabs at humility and not-so-subtle “the lawyers are making us do this” signals. It’s hard to keep up the little-guy act when you’re not.

—Posted by Brian Morrissey