Just read about the little spat between Google and Sweden, regarding language use of the word ‘Google’. Interesting. Very interesting indeed, to think that a word in the public domain, dating back well before the rise of the internet, even if it wasn’t exactly on everyone’s lips, should be protected. Sorry, Mr. Google. Can’t really be done. Doesn’t happen that way. Whatever it says on the legal papers, I’m afraid nothing will stop the average Swede from using (or misusing) the word in any form that pleases. It seems that we don’t really own language, it owns us. Not that I’m setting myself up against the company, you understand, simply making a prediction, based on what has happened to many other once generic words that passed into common language use. Think Hoover as an example. Slightly more up to date, I have heard people use the term’iPad’ for something which may have a superficial resemblance to that product, but which certainly never saw its nativity in an Apple factory anywhere in the world. I follow that word with great interest.

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