Trademarkology: The Law of the Brand

Trademarkology: The Law of the Brand

Category Archives: Trademarks

Subscribe to Trademarks RSS Feed

March! What a month! (Part 1)

Posted in Brands, Copyright, Registrations, Trademarks
No, I’m not going to write about MARCH MADNESS® – that annual ritual of college basketball and the NCAA® basketball tournament. Rather, I’m writing about the crazy winter weather which battered the East Coast with four Nor’Easter storms dumping record snowfall this March. After last week’s Storm Skylar and this week’s Storm Toby, some parts… Continue Reading

Specimen Pilot Program

Posted in Brands, Copyright, Trademarks
The United States Patent and Trademark Office (the “PTO”) has launched a new pilot program designed to ensure that specimens of use submitted to the PTO reflect actual use of the mark in commerce. A mark is “used in commerce” within the meaning of the federal trademark statute (the Lanham Act) when the mark is… Continue Reading

Olympic Marks

Posted in Brands, Copyright, Copyright, Trademarks
The opening ceremonies for the 2018 Olympic winter games take place Friday, February 9, but competition has already begun. In addition to competitions on the ice and slopes, there are competitions among brand owners. Official sponsors of the Olympic games pour lots of dollars into exclusivity, promotions, and advertisements related to the Olympics. And sometimes… Continue Reading

A PR Headache for the CROCK-POT Trademark

Posted in Brands, Trademarks
Fans of the tear-jerking NBC drama This Is Us will be aware of a certain incident with a kitchen appliance that had a big effect on the show’s Pearson family. (Fans who don’t know what I’m talking about and don’t like spoilers should read no further.) Fans already knew that one of the main characters… Continue Reading

The Fight Over the “Golden Knights”

Posted in Brands, Trademarks
Since becoming a Nashvillian a little over a year ago, I’ve fallen in love with a new sport: hockey. Hockey fever is infectious and its contraction was almost unavoidable as the Nashville Predators made it all the way to the Stanley Cup Final for the 2016-2017 season. This year, there is a new team that… Continue Reading

Good Intentions

Posted in Brands, Trademarks
We are two weeks into 2018. Have you kept your new year’s resolutions so far? If you are like me, you have good intentions, but that may be all you have. If one of your intentions this year is to use a new mark with a good or service (or to begin using an existing… Continue Reading

Prescriptions for Pharmaceutical Marks

Posted in Trademarks
Some types of applications have a more difficult time than others proceeding to registration before the United States Patent and Trademark Office (the “PTO”). Sometimes the nature of a mark (such as product packaging) requires more evidence to demonstrate eligibility for registration. But sometimes the industry or goods with which the mark is used present… Continue Reading

Going Bananas for Halloween – Costume Wars

Posted in Trademarks
Are you a Halloweenie? If you are, you value all things Halloween on this spooky day filled with tricks, treats, and… you guessed it – costumes. The National Retail Federation estimates that Americans will spend over $9 billion this year, with about $3.4 billion attributable to costumes. Costumes are big business. The banana costume is… Continue Reading

Phantasmarkgoria

Posted in Trademarks
In the spirit of Halloween, this post will be about the ghostly subject of phantom marks. Generally, a trademark application filed in the United States may seek registration of only one mark. This is not always the case in other countries. For example, in the United Kingdom, Australia, and Hong Kong, it is possible for… Continue Reading

Nike Plays Defense Against Gronkowski

Posted in Trademarks
In April 2016, Gronk Nation LLC filed two applications for registration of himself in silhouette form spiking a football. Gronk’s “trademark move” is the Gronk spike, so it is no wonder that the logo he is seeking to protect looks like this: One of the applications was for use in connection with clothing and the… Continue Reading

Promoter of Pugilist Products Fails to Prove Priority

Posted in Brands, Trademarks
In a case of first impression, the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (the “TTAB”) decided that a licensee, even an exclusive licensee who has been appointed by the licensor as its representative for protecting intellectual property rights, cannot assert her licensor’s purported priority rights to prevail in a claim of likelihood of confusion. Moreno v.… Continue Reading

CHEERI-NOS

Posted in Brands, Trademarks
Cheerios® may have a trademark registration for the slogan The One and Only®, but the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board shot down its attempt to register the color yellow for its box, finding that it was not the one and only cereal with a yellow box. Cheerios have been a staple on the American family’s… Continue Reading

The Beyhive® is buzzing . . . about Trademarks!?

Posted in Trademarks
Beyoncé, also referred to as “Queen Bey”, has cultivated and inspired arguably the largest and most influential fan group in the world, known as the “Beyhive”. Beyoncé’s devoted legion of fans have become well-known for stirring a “buzz” on social media platforms like Twitter. The “hive” is always on high alert for all things Beyoncé… Continue Reading

University Licensing Programs

Posted in Trademarks
Can you believe summer is almost over and students are heading back to school? Already some local high schools have begun their fall semester. And college students will be back on campus soon. When I began my freshman year of college, I promptly purchased a sweatshirt with the university’s name emblazoned across the front. That… Continue Reading

CAN YOU SPOT A FAKE INVOICE? Don’t Lose Out by Paying Official-Looking Trademark Registration Renewal and Maintenance Invoices.

Posted in Trademarks
Today, we have a public service announcement in hopes you don’t fall victim to this ever-growing problem. If you have filed a federal trademark application or own a trademark registration with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), you are probably going to receive—if you haven’t already—fake or misleading invoices. These scams are on the… Continue Reading

Benefits of Registration

Posted in Brands, Trademark Basics, Trademarks
Recently, Amazon rolled out its revamped brand registry. This is a recent example of an online marketplace encouraging intellectual property owners to embrace the platform by taking steps to protect such owners’ rights. Amazon encourages participation in the brand registry by noting that those who enroll “can work together [with Amazon] to reduce potential intellectual… Continue Reading