Tag Archives: Webster’s Dictionary

Museum of genericization

The Merriam-Webster Online dictionary has a cute little feature:  The “Top Ten Words from Trademarks.”  You know, mainly the usual suspects:  Band-Aids, etc.  It’s a study in what can go wrong if you don’t “police” your trademark, yada-yada-yada.

Noah Webster

A Webster, not a webster

Speaking of brand management and equity, when I saw this link — hat-tip to Jane Coleman! — it reminded me of how much the Merriam-Webster people need to do stuff like this to build back the primacy they ought to have online but which I have the impression has been ceded to Dictionary.com.

That, in turn, made me think of one very famous “word from a trademark” — the one damnable genericized mark — Merriam-Webster left out of the list!

UPDATE:  I didn’t take a screen shot when I first published this post, but as of June 29, 2011, here’s how Merriam Webster shows up in a Google search for the word DICTIONARY, at least from my desktop in New York:

Looking it up

Second result — not too shabby.