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+ - Spam lawsuit's last laugh is at Hormel's expense->

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Brian Cartmell
Brian Cartmell writes "Minneapolis — StarTribune Writes: Hormel may have lost at least part of that argument. In a closely watched lawsuit against a Seattle-based company, Spam Arrest, the U.S. Trademark Trial and Appeal Board ruled against Hormel, saying that consumers of canned Spam wouldn't confuse it with "Spam Arrest" software that blocks unwanted e-mail, which now is generically called spam.

Derek Newman, Spam Arrest's attorney, said the decision opens the door for many other anti-spam software companies to incorporate the word "spam" into their trademarked product names.

"Spam Arrest fought this battle for the whole software industry," Newman said. "The case is limited to the e-mail usage of the word spam, which will not detract from the fame associated with Hormel's meat products trademark."

Hormel said it was disappointed, but officials wouldn't comment on what the decision means to the company.

"Although we understand and accept that the term 'spam' has taken on new meaning in recent years, it is important to remember that we created the Spam brand more than 70 years ago and have invested significantly to build, support and protect the brand," Hormel spokeswoman Julie Craven said."

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Spam lawsuit's last laugh is at Hormel's expense

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