We have just learned that Freedom Scientific filed suit against Serotek on May 14 claiming trademark infringement for use of the term “FreedomBox”. This development raises several potentially interesting, if speculative, questions:

  • FreedomBox has existed as a product of Serotek Corporation for seven years. Why is Freedom Scientific making this move after all that time has passed?
  • This lawsuit was filed one day before the Wafra acquisition was made public. Is there any relationship between the two events?
  • Serotek’s products are evolving in some rather innovative ways, covering some of the same territory as products manufactured by Freedom Scientific. Now that Serotek’s recognition and standing is rapidly increasing within the assistive technology industry and the blind community, does this lawsuit represent an anti-competitive move on Freedom Scientific’s part to attempt to delete a player from the field?
  • The name “FreedomBox” and the name “Freedom Scientific” have only the word “freedom” in common. There are many other company’s with names including the word “freedom” including Freedom Communications, Inc. and Freedom Technologies Corporation. Given these and probably many other facts, how does Freedom Scientific have a case? The movie Jaws was made in 1975, long before either Henter-Joyce or Freedom Scientific existed. Should Steven Spielberg sue Freedom Scientific for trademark infringement over the name “Jaws”?
  • Why has Freedom Scientific demanded a jury instead of simply allowing a judge to handle this matter expeditiously?

We at the Blind Access Journal are deeply concerned about the possible ramifications of this development, even if Freedom Scientific does not win their case. We are continuing to research this story with our sources in the assistive technology and legal fields and will report frequently as new details become known. Please feel free to post a comment or e-mail us at any time about this or any other item.