ADOTAS – Did you remember that the androids in Philip K. Dick’s novel “Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?” — which was made into the classic film “Blade Runner,” duh — were “Nexus-6” models? I completely forgot about that, and here I was trying to pass myself off as an uber-nerd.
So Nexus One, Google’s new handset, is an homage to science fiction great Dick (and not “Star Trek Generations”), which I think is pretty awesome but the author’s daughter, Isa Dick Hackett, is not so amused.
As the executive for Electric Shepherd Production, the film adaption arm of the Dick estate (are there any Dick stories/books that haven’t been made into movies?), she’s threatening to sue Google for infringement of intellectual property rights.
Noting the correlation between the Android operating system and Nexus name, she told the Wall Street Journal: “It’s not lost on the people who are somewhat familiar with this novel.”
WSJ quotes some trademark attorneys who think the Dick estate’s case isn’t clear cut. Let me answer for you — there is no case. Instead of delighting in the hat tip to her dad, Hackett is making a mockery of his memory by trying to get a slice of Google pie, a la George Lucas getting a paycheck from Verizon for the name Droid (which was equally pathetic). It’s called an homage, it’s a tribute — you don’t have to make a frackin’ buck off it.
However, if Google paid off Dick’s estate so they would stop selling the rights to Dick short stories that get turned into crap films like “Paycheck” and “Next,” I would be very pleased.