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FiftyThree, which makes the award-winning sketchbook app called Paper, is “ripping” into Facebook for naming its new storytelling app “Paper.”

In a blog post on FiftyThree’s site today, the company asked Facebook to change the name of their app to avoid any confusion between the two apps and frankly, get its own name.  Facebook’s new standalone app, which is now available for download on iOS, is a content reader with messages, notifications, search, and a completely redesigned profile.

“We reached out to Facebook about the confusion their app was creating, and they apologized for not contacting us sooner. But an earnest apology should come with a remedy,” the blog stated.  “There’s a simple fix here. We think Facebook can apply the same degree of thought they put into the app into building a brand name of their own. An app about stories shouldn’t start with someone else’s story. Facebook should stop using our brand name.”

According to trademark public records, FiftyThree filed for the trademark “Paper by FiftyThree” on May 11, 2012 under “Computer application software for smart phones and tablets, namely, software for use in writing on smart phones and tablets with either a stylus or finger.”  However, because the term “paper” has such broad application, the trademark may have trouble holding up in court.paper

FiftyThree’s Paper app, which won Apple’s 2012 iPad App of the Year, started out as a virtual notebook and sketching app and has expanded to include a stylus and other in-app purchase add-ons.  Still, it will likely get overshadowed by Facebook’s Paper app, which is already being called ‘the best Facebook app ever.’

FiftyThree ends its blog post by stating: “What will Facebook’s story be? Will they be the corporate giant who bullies their developers? Or be agile, recognize a mistake, and fix it? Is it ‘Move fast and break things’ or ‘Move fast and make things’?”

Let’s hope this situation gets sorted out before they each start “tearing” into each other in court.


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