In it to pin it: Pinterest loses two trademark suits

The social network sought to prevent two companies from using ‘pin’ and ‘pinning’ in names and functions. U.S. and U.K. courts ruled against Pinterest.

It may surprise some of you to learn that social media giant Pinterest didn’t invent the verb “pin.” That hasn’t stopped the company from getting litigious over others’ use of the word.

Although Pinterest has lost a couple of battles in this arena, it is determined to win the war.

A U.S. judge recently ruled that the startup Pintrips was within its rights to use the terms “pin” and “pinning.” In the U.K., a startup called Free118 won its bid to use the phrase “pinmydeal” for one of its functions.

“Pinterest cannot prohibit other companies from using the word pin to describe that well-known operation, which is exactly how the evidence demonstrates that Pintrips uses the word pin here,” according to the court ruling in the U.S.

Still, Pinterest is pursuing other cases where companies are using some form of the word “pin” as it tries to secure trademarks in the U.S. and Europe.

Pinterest’s guidelines appear to discourage misuse of the word.

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