Why “champagne” sorbet might be illegal

The powerful trade association that represents champagne makers has sued bloggers, water bottlers and haute couture fashion brands. They warned Apple against calling the gold iPhone “champagne” and spent three years making sure that no one but French producers could snag champagne-related wine URLs.

But recently the Comité Interprofessionnel du vin de Champagne scored an even more significant victory, when Europe’s highest court suggested in a nonbinding ruling that even products containing the French sparkling wine may not be able to use the name “champagne.”

The case in question involved “Champagne sorbet,” which Aldi sold at a number of its German stores in 2012. The dessert contained 12 percent champagne — the real kind, from France — but the Comité Champagne claimed the use of the protected name on a non-wine product risked cheapening it. Read this Washington Post article to find out the details and the likely future for the name “champagne”.

About Names: Here’s looking at you, kid, and Ingrids everywhere

Dr. Cleveland Evans writes about names for the Omaha World-Herald. In his August 29 column, he looks at the history of the name Ingrid.

Ingrid is the modern form of Old Norse “Ingríðr.” It combines the name of the god Ing or Yngvi with fríðr, “beautiful.” Other Norse names honoring Yngvi are male Ingmar, “Ing is famous,” and Ingvar, “Ing’s warrior.” Ingeborg, “Ing’s protection,” and Ingegerd, “Ing’s enclosure,” are feminine.

In the 1910 U.S. Census, there were 6,592 Ingas, 3,584 Ingeborgs and 1,812 Ingers — mostly Scandinavian immigrants and their daughters. There were only 1,222 Ingrids.

That March, Crown Prince Gustav Adolf of Sweden and his wife, Margaret (a granddaughter of Britain’s Queen Victoria), named their only daughter Princess Ingrid. She later wed Danish Crown Prince Frederik, becoming queen of Denmark in 1947.

Ingrid Bergman was named after the young princess — as were many other Swedish girls. It was Bergman herself, though, who spread the name far beyond Sweden. Read on to find out more about Ingrids in history!


Tech Talk: Brand Naming In Silicon Valley Is Convoluted

The story of how Google got its name is well-established: Larry Page was reportedly fascinated with googol, a number consisting of one and a hundred zeros, and ultimately decided to play on that word as the name for his Internet search company. But not all naming in Silicon Vally is that easy! To find out more about how tech companies come up with the right brands, click through to this article by Dominik Bosnjak at Android Headlines to learn how the pros approaching naming.


Nur Huda el-Wahabi to be commemorated in a volume of Philip Pullman’s “The Book of Dust”

Nur Huda el-Wahabi CREDIT: Facebook

On the 14th of June, 2017, residents of London awakened to the horrific news that a raging inferno had engulfed a 24 story highrise in the middle of North Kensington. According to police reports 80 lives were lost in that tragedy. In a charity event to raise money for the surviving families, British author Philip Pullman has decided to name a character in his newest publication after one of the Grenfell Tower victims. Pullman raised £32,400 after teacher James Clements suggested the character should be named in memory of his former pupil Nur Huda el-Wahabi, who died in the tragedy.

Trademark for n-word, swastika filed after legal ruling allowing disparaging marks

The US Supreme Court ruled in June that disparaging words can receive trademark protection. It said rejecting disparaging trademarks violates the First Amendment, clearing the way for an Asian American rock group called the Slants to trademark its name – and for the Washington Redskins’ maligned moniker to stay protected as well. Now, two entrepreneurs offended by the n-word filed to trademark the epithet to keep it out of the hands of racists.

Steve Maynard, who also filed to trademark the Nazi swastika, said he wanted to quash hate by getting the rights to it. Will they succeed? Read on to find out what IP lawyers think of their chances.

Stars – they’re just like us (in that we give them names)!

Star bright, star bright, first star I see tonight…every wonder how all of those heavenly bodies receive their official name? The International Astronomical Union provides detailed information about the star names and naming – including a long list of list of IAU-approved star names.

Hint: don’t try this at home.

The cataloguing of stars has seen a long history. Since prehistory, cultures and civilizations all around the world have given their own unique names to the brightest and most prominent stars in the night sky. Certain names have remained little changed as they passed through Greek, Latin and Arabic cultures, and some are still in use today. As astronomy developed and advanced over the centuries, a need arose for a universal cataloguing system, whereby the brightest stars (and thus those most studied) were known by the same labels, regardless of the country or culture from which the astronomers came.

Call for Papers: Language, place and periphery, Copenhagen, Denmark, Jan 18-19 2018

The University of Copenhagen will be holding a conference on Language, Place, and Periphery from the 18th to the 19th of January 2018. Interested presenters are invited to send in abstract proposals on one or more of the following topics: language ideology; dialect and migration; belonging and language, etc. More details about this event can be found at the conference website.

Abstract submission and registration opens 1st of September 2017. The deadline for submission of abstracts is 1st of October 2017. Abstracts should be no more than 300 words in length. Notification of acceptance: 15th of October 2017.

American Geographical Society Library Research Fellowships

Between 4 to 8 fellowships are being offered by the American Geographical Society for scholars to conduct research in the special maps collection of the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee Libraries. The fellowships range in time from two to four weeks. The library’s primary strengths are geography, cartography, and related historical topics. Interested applicants are encouraged to consult the fellowship descriptions and application process on the AGSL website. The deadline for applications is November 30, 2017.

Call for Papers: 17th International Conference of Historical Geographers 2018, Warsaw, Poland, July 15-20 2018

A call for paper proposals and sessions has been issued for the 17th International Conference of Historical Geographers (ICHG). The Conference is being sponsored by the University of Warsaw, the Tadeusz Manteuffel Institute of History, and the Polish Academy of Sciences. The Conference will be held at the University of Warsaw from the 15th to the 20th of July 2018. The deadline for proposal submissions is the 14th of October 2017. Information on submissions and registration can be found here. 

Papers and posters are welcome on any aspect of historical geography, including empirical, theoretical and historiographical aspects of the field and related disciplines, including the history of cartography, history of science and environmental history.