If you do not know what a netbook is... Stop reading this and march yourself straight over to google. And after that, come out of that WW2 bunker you have been in and smell the sweet air of freedom.
Once you have caught up on your lingo, be advised that the term 'netbook' seems to have been trademarked by a company called 'Psion' sometime back in the mid 90's. They made a product called a netbook and are now trying to cash in on the name by threatening to sue us bloggers as well as every other company under the sun using the term.
That being said, a group calling themselves "Save the Netbooks" started a campaign to appeal Psion's claim to fame and glory. Ok, so we have a trademark infringement issue yes? Not quite.
The term 'netbook' combines the terms 'notebook' and 'internet'. Back when we all first started getting into the craze, we were calling these things 'subnotebooks' or 'UMPC's'. UMPC is a term that is already used to describe tablet like internet browsing devices that also have some computing function. (Think t-mobile sidekick on steroids) This term obviously didn't fit. The world came up with 'netbook' as it was (and still is) the best term to use to identify and describe the little monsters.
Save the Netbooks website was set up on Feb. 16th 2009. They were set to dig in for the long haul... Now they are shutting down operations... 3 days after starting... Why?
Dell has filed a petition requesting that Psion's claims be null and void. They have stated that the netbook line by Psion has been abandoned, and that the company is making fraudulent claims that they are still selling the line. They have a very good (albeit brief) case built up that is making the world believe that they have more or less already won. Which is why savethenetbooks.com is shutting down operations 2 days after starting them. We bloggers can now breathe a bit more easily, thanks to Dell computers.
Whom by the way has had their netbook out for the shortest time period of all the manufacturers, I might add... Where was Asus in all this?
Save the Netbooks
Psion Cease and Desist Letter
Dell Cancellation Petition
Wikipedia Netbook Article