Phil of Skype Journal is reporting that an attorney for Skype has been involved in some not so friendly communications with independent Skype blogger Jan Geirnaert.
Jan, just so you know, has been running sites such as skype-watch.com and skype-gadgets.com.
Here is the text of what Skype attorney Seema Sharma has written to Jan:
Dear Mr Geirnaert
Lester Madden has passed to me a copy of your email below so that I may respond to it. I am an IP lawyer at Skype.
In the first instance, I should like to stress that we work very hard at Skype to prevent third parties from illegally registering and using domains with the trade mark SKYPE in the URL where the domains in question are not officially endorsed by or associated with Skype. It goes without saying that we do not want third party domains and the associated websites to appear to the wider community as being associated with or endorsed by Skype when they are not. I take your point that it may be the case that there are other Skype related domain names registered which do not belong to Skype.
However, you should be assured that we try to (and are very successful at) both not only making extensive pre-emptive defensive registrations for domains but also retrieving domain names that have been registered without regard to Skype’s trade mark rights. Should you require more information about our domain name enforcement policy, please contact our external domain name specialist attorney, Don Moody (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Therefore, whilst I appreciate that you have extended us the courtesy of an approach for consent to use certain promotional items in connection with your sites, you will no doubt understand why we can not depart from our standard policy and give you permissions to use the domains you have registered for any purpose, including blogging. Nor can we give you permission to promote sites owned by you which are not associated with nor endorsed by Skype.
I should mention that we are always happy when third parties enthusiastically promote Skype however, we will not endorse promotional activities (e.g the promotion of your sites www.skype-gadgets.com and www.skype-watch.com on chopsticks) where Skype has no control over the domains in question.
Furthermore, whilst we at Skype are always happy to answer questions, may I please request that any further emails are directed to our customer support team at email@example.com.
Faced with this threat, Jan has taken down his content, replacing it with what we've included below.
This issue is more complicated than it sounds. Phil adds that if Seema Sharma consulted with Skype before he sent the note to Jan, he might have learned that Jan's been:
- working on distribution and marketing for dozens of major Skype-affiliated companies, nurturing Skype's ecosystem.
- briefing business and government technology executives on Skype's effect on management, IT, telecom and economic policy.
- covering Skype-related news and issues at international conferences in Europe and Asia, creating unique editorial content.
- contributing to Skype Journal.
- advocating Skype passionately, online and off.
Colleague VoIP blogger Andy Abramson takes that info and asks, shouldn't Skype's left hand know what the right hand is doing?