Queensland-based computer support service provider Geekmobile is in the middle of a legal claim sought by tech giant Uber Technologies over the trademarked usage of “Über Geeks”.
According to court documents, Uber claimed in December 2018 that the usage of Über Geeks, the phrase Geekmobile uses to refer to its staff, had not been used over the three-year relevant period ending 13 November 2018, and as such could be applied for non-use.
In a notice of opposition filed in January 2019, the trademark holders claimed back that they have used the trademark since June 2007.
While the hearing officer Adrian Richards claimed in court documents that the evidence used to back up the usage of Über Geeks was “a little thin”, he did believe that they were using the trademark for the services they did provide.
“While it is at least arguable … that much of the soliciting for business is done in relation to the GEEKMOBILE trademark, that is accompanied by clear representations that the supply will be carried out and indeed is carried out by the Opponent’s Über Geeks. This is also use of the trademark during the relevant period,” the documents noted.
Of note were Geekmobile advertisements in various Yellow Pages advertisements in book and online form during the three-year period in question, which includes usage of the trademarked phrase.
However, Richards also said that “neither party has been entirely successful”, as there were some services the Über Geeks trademark was originally applied for that the business does not provide.
Falling under trademark classes 41 and 42, these essentially include website hosting, games and game services, as well as the rental of computer hardware and software.
“The Opponent has, on the evidence, never entered any of those fields nor would removal of them cause it or the public interest any harm,” court documents noted.
As a result, the hearing officer decided to remove the trademark for the unused services, which will be enacted in a month’s time barring any appeals.
No costs have been awarded at this stage.