ACP’s reincarnated computing magazine TechLife, which rose from the ashes of PC User yesterday, has irked publishers already using the TechLife name.
SBS uses the name for its the blog Tech Life, which is written by technology journalist Trevor Long, who also writes his own similarly named blog Your Tech Life.
However, the name has not been trademarked by a publisher in Australia – so ACP appears to be on legally safe ground.
SBS marketing director Jacquie Riddell told Mumbrella: “It’s flattering when people steal your name. We could send them a letter advising them that they’re trading on something people know and recognise as ours. But we won’t do that. It’s just a blog.”
Riddell referred to another case of ‘name theft’ two years ago, when New Zealand broadcaster TV3 used the same slogan as SBS’s ‘Six billion stories and counting’.
“Naming is a horrible task and there are so many restrictions. But ACP’s approach has been sloppy,” she said.
Trevor Long told Mumbrella: “I have received a barrage of emails and twitter messages about this, particularly from PRs. It is annoying. But good for SEO, so bring it on.”
He added: “What I find crazy is that a company with a magazine about technology is rebranding to a name that they can’t even get a web address for.”
Techlife.com is registered to an American company that aggregates other tech vendor sites, from mobile phones to swimming pools. Techlife.com.au is a service for installing flat screens, home theatre equipment and data cabling.
ACP has registered techlifemagazine.com.au and techlifemag.com.au domains, and has applied to register the trademark Tech Life.
Deborah Thomas, ACP’s director of media, public affairs and brand development said in a statement: “Our checks revealed that many people use the phrase Tech Life, and we don’t think there’s a risk of our magazine being confused with either of these blogs, or any others which might also use the same or similar phrases. We have applied to register the name for the goods and services we will be providing. However, the registration process takes many months and the trade mark is pending.”