What do a small Canadian metal manufacturing shop and the band Metallica have in common? They share the same name. The metal shop chose the name Metallica Manufacturing in the late 1990s, well after the heavy metal band had established itself worldwide. But the metal shop owners didn’t imagine choosing the same name as the band would cause any confusion or perceived endorsement of the metal shop by the band. They just thought it had a nice ring to it. So they file a trademark application for the mark Metallica. It turns out, however, that the band’s trademark attorneys didn’t take lightly to use of the band’s name, even if the band’s metalwork was musical and not mechanical.
Internet-based content streaming providers have been a thorn in the side of the major TV networks for the last few years. Streaming technology has made it possible for viewers to do their own thing, without regard for the networks’ advertising systems. Lately, the legal implications of this controversial technology have been the focus of much attention. In fact, now there is a new twist in the legal battles. Trademark attorneys have now become involved in some of the newest battles.
Not long ago, with plenty of fanfare and speculation, Facebook Inc. went public. Since then, Facebook has been implementing new changes to its website operation and layout. Some people like the changes more than others. One company, Timelines.com, an online scrapbooking company based in Chicago, took issue with one of the changes — the profile “timeline” element. Apparently, Timeline.com’s trademark attorney believes Facebook’s timeline infringes Timeline.com’s “timeline” brand.