posted on Apr, 17 2003 @ 12:22 PM
Sony Drops Bid to Trademark 'Shock and Awe'
Thursday, April 17, 2003
TOKYO — Sony Corp. said its U.S. video game unit would withdraw an application to use "shock and awe" as a trademark, describing the move to
capitalize on the catchword of the war in Iraq as "an exercise of regrettable bad judgment."
The Japanese electronics giant apologized in a statement posted on its Internet site this week.
The video game unit, Sony Computer Entertainment America, came under media scrutiny after a filing with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office showed
that it had applied for the "shock and awe" trademark on March 21, a day after American-led forces opened hostilities against Iraq.
Sony's statement confirmed SCEA had filed such an application and said it would be withdrawn, without elaborating.
"Sony ... concurs with the views of those who have expressed strong criticisms regarding this conduct by the subsidiary," the company said. "It was
an exercise of regrettable bad judgment in that it disregarded the context in which the term has been used."
The phrase "shock and awe" was coined, but apparently not trademarked, by military strategist Harlan Ullman in a 1996 publication. He used it to
describe a tactic of pressuring the enemy to give up with little fighting.