Microsoft is working on a social search application called Tulalip to compete with the Google Social Search application. Some members of the Tulalip Tribes, based in Snohomish County, Washington—not far from Microsoft's headquarters in Redmond, just east of Seattle—are upset the computer conglomerate didn't ask for permission, reported TechFlash.
A few within the 4,000-member tribe think Microsoft infringed on the tribe's name, the Everett Herald reported.
"By all accounts, it's an internal project at Microsoft and not a public thing. But in reality they should not have named it Tulalip," state Rep. John McCoy, D-Tulalip, also a tribal member, told the Everett Herald. “I have no idea what our tribal officials plan to do, but technically these Microsoft employees infringed on the Tulalip name.”
A tribal spokesman told King 5 News that the tribe was talking with Microsoft "to determine the facts." Meanwhile, a Microsoft spokesperson stated the name was simply code for an internal project, reported King 5 News.
Native American Rights Fund Executive Director John Echohawk said the Tulalip name should not be used without permission, reported the Herald.
According to Search Engine Land, the site Tulalip previously offered a “welcome” message and the explanation: "With Tulalip you can Find what you need and Share what you know easier than ever." It has since been taken down.