by Thomas Brady


To all the families and graduates, post-graduation please Skype on … I also have to tell you, a guy I know in Seattle has a son who goes to the school down the street here, UCLA. I saw him the other day, and he starts chirping at me, chirp, chirp, chirp. I said, “I’m going down to USC to speak.” Chirp, chirp, chirp, UCLA better, chirp, chirp, chirp. I had it. I whip out my Windows Phone, I Bing the university rankings, and I just show it to him right there in black and white, USC 23 – UCLA 25.

Geekwire quotes MSFT CEO Steve Ballmer’s commencement address at USC over the weekend (via Digital Daily).

Classy, Mr. Ballmer. Way to work in some product placement.

Most companies have a love-hate relationship with their product name becoming a verb, i.e. “that looks photoshopped” or “just google it.” While it clearly works well as free marketing, it also creates some copyright issues. When your trademark becomes vernacular, it’s a lot harder to defend it as a trademark. I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone so aggressively push their trademark the way Microsoft has tried to get us to use Bing™ as a term.