Launched back in 2011, Pinterest has grown into one of the biggest social networks on the internet. Despite boasting hundred of millions of users around the world, the social network might be forced to change its name in Europe if it wants to continue doing business there. Prior to its UK launch, a London based startup called Premium Interest trademarked the name Pinterest and now a European trademark court has ruled in favor of Premium Interest and its founder, Alex Hearn.
Hearn didn’t trademark Pinterest only in the UK, he also holds the trademark in a number of other markets, such as Australia. A lawyer who represented Hearn says that in order to continue operating under the same trademark in Europe, Pinterest will either have to obtain a license from Hearn or change its name. Even if it does decide to change its name, the step won’t be unusual. In a similar trademark infringement case, Microsoft was forced to change the name of its cloud storage service, SkyDrive as the trademark is owned by British broadcaster Sky Broadcasting. While the trademark court rejected Pinterest’s, the social network, in its entirely, a spokesman for the company says that they plan to appeal the recent decision.