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Net core of Apple name spat


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LONDON, England (Reuters) -- Apple Computer and the Beatles' record company Apple Corps have gone to court in Britain over who gets to use the fruity name now that the computer company has entered the music business on the Internet.

The two companies reached a deal in 1991 after a fight over the trademark, signing an agreement that set out who could use the name and logo, and when.

But the British record company says the American computer company broke the deal by using the Apple name to market its new iTunes Internet music service.

In a preliminary skirmish on Wednesday, Apple Computer asked the court to rule that the full legal battle should be dealt with by California courts, not courts in England.

The computer company's lawyer said that the 1991 agreement allows Apple Computer to use the name for data transmission services, even if the data included material such as music, which was within the record label's "field of use."

The hearing, which is scheduled to last three days, coincides with news from across the Atlantic that rap superstar Eminem is suing Apple Computer on the grounds it used one of his hit songs in a TV advertisement without his permission.



Copyright 2004 Reuters. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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