Sabermetrics to Remain in Public Domain
On February 3, 2010, Deep Focus, Inc. withdrew its application to trademark the term “sabermetrics” for social media consulting services.
Sabermetrics was coined by statistician Bill James, who first introduced the word to readers of his Abstract in March 1980, writing: “Sabermetrics is the mathematical and statistical analysis of baseball records.” Since that time, sabermetrics has become a ubiquitous part of the baseball landscape at all levels and by players, front office staff, the media, and fans alike. Most major league teams use sabermetrically derived statistics as part of their player evaluations. Members of the Baseball Writers Association of America and others who report on baseball refer to sabermetrics and its metrics on a regular basis. Recently James has said that sabermetrics is a “declaration of no ownership of knowledge.”
“SABR appreciates that Deep Focus has seen the value of keeping the term ‘sabermetrics’ in the public domain,” said Executive Director John Zajc. “We now understand that there was no intent to restrict free use of the word, and we are glad that they respect that free use of the word benefits everyone.”
“The intent to use the term ‘sabermetrics’ was solely to describe our approach to evaluating engagement within social media, and not to own the term outright. In no way did we mean to restrict others’ use of the word,” said Deep Focus’ CEO Ian Schafer. “We are fans of the game and fans of the sabermetric approach of statistical evaluation. We owe great thanks to Bill James and other sabermetricians for inspiring us to think more objectively about performance.”
The Society for American Baseball Research is an international, member-driven organization whose mission is to foster the research, preservation, and dissemination of the history and record of baseball. More information is available on SABR’s website at: www.sabr.org.
Deep Focus is a leading full-service interactive marketing agency focused on measurable, results-driven engagement. More information is available on Deep Focus’ website at: www.deep-focus.net.