For once, Myspace seems to have come out on top. (For now, at least.)
Apple Inc. recently went to court in an attempt to trademark its classic "Music" app icon, featuring beamed-together eighth notes on an orange background. The image can be found on iPhones and other iOS devices that run Apple's Music app. Unfortunately, another company already has the rights to a similar logo. That company is the once-popular social network, Myspace.
According to Gigaom, the other icon first belonged to social music site iLike, acquired by Myspace in 2009. Though iLike is no longer in service, Myspace still owns the rights to the service's graphic.
See the pictures below to view Apple's icon (left) and Myspace's design (right).
Gizmodo points out that Apple tried to persuade judges that no one would ever mistake these two icons. But, in the end, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office decided that the icons are too similar in appearance, as are the services associated with each icon.
In comparing the marks, we are mindful that the test is not whether the marks can be distinguished when subjected to a side-by-side comparison, but rather whether the marks are sufficiently similar in terms of their overall commercial impression so that confusion as to the source of the goods and services offered under the respective marks is likely to result.
Apple can appeal the decision but has not yet said if it will.
This is an interesting turn of events for Apple, fresh off its recent $1 billion patent triumph against Samsung. Myspace winning a ruling against Apple is like watching the shy, nerdy kid finally punch the playground bully in the face.
Myspace has also garnered headlines recently because of its soon-to-be sleek website redesign. The new image-heavy social network appears to maintain a Pinterest-esque look. The site is also placing heavy emphasis on pages belinging musicians who use the service.
So who knows? Maybe that garish orange icon will be put back into use.
What do you think about the Apple vs. Myspace case? Let us know in the comments section, or tweet us your opinions at @HuffPostTech. Then read more about the Apple/Samsung rivalry, or check out a few pictures of the new Myspace redesign.
Clarification: Language has been amended to clarify that Apple was seeking trademarks and not patents in its appeal.