Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Generic zumba, anyone?

Is there such a thing as “generic” zumba (as opposed to Zumba®)? And why not? People are happily practicing (copyright-free) yoga or dancing (non-trademarked) salsa. Even Pilates now is considered a generic term free for unrestricted use. Personally, I have aversion to trademarks, logos and their kin. So, in principle, I shouldn’t mind.

Except I do. As it is all too often the case, here is a point where “in principle” and “in practice” are two different things. For, when I hear that someone “is already giving Pilates classes here and thinks of starting zumba classes soon”, that spells for me “sorry buddy, this place is already taken”. As if Zumba is something that you just add on top of your existing Pilates or Spinning programme when there is enough demand. I can ascribe it to a generally relaxed attitude here: zumba, Zumba®, are you or are you not licensed to teach it — who cares?

The official Zumba website gives quite a list of “proper” and “improper” usage of the word Zumba. (How many ZIN™ members actually read it, I wonder in parentheses.) For example: ‘It is proper to say “I love the ZUMBA fitness program” and improper to say “I love ZUMBA”. (I am quite positive nobody ever would say “I love the ZUMBA fitness program”.) Or: ‘Do not change the spelling, insert hyphens or combine two words into one.’ Or: ‘“The California Zumba Center” is not allowed’. By the same token, “zumbafuerteventura” is most likely “improper”. Ah, well, who cares.

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