Question of the day: 1-30-17

Question: Just 14 years after its 1860 invention, this durable floor covering gained the dubious honor of being the first product to have its proper name ruled generic, and thus non-trademark-worthy.

Answer: Linoleum! Inventor Frederik Walton failed to trademark the name immediately when he began selling his creation, and by the time he became fed up with the competition borrowing it, courts ruled that it had become a common term not distinct to his brand.

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