A few months back, Apple got into a bit of a hissy-fit and began to throw cease and desist orders at folks who used the term “podcast”. Apparently, they felt that it was their term (that they didn’t invent) so they had the right to defend it.
Fast forward to now, and Apple has done a 180′. Evidently, the bad publicity made them change their view, and they no longer will complain if people use the term to legitimately describe podcasting services.
Unfortunately, the letter that revealed this, written to podcaster Dave Gray at The Global Geek Podcast website, is very vague as to whether Apple will seek further litigation. Apple notes that they don’t license the term, and I’ve taken this to mean that they don’t license the term as in licensing of a song to a filmmaker – they do not charge people for use of it, however its vague as to whether this is only for uses that they consider proper (“accurately refer to podcasting services”).
Regardless of the details, the news is fantastic for podcasters. You can now describe your product correctly without fear of a shut-down order from Apple. As to others… well, why would you use the term in the first place? 🙂