Category: Trademark Registration

Devils Hand Sign

Rocker Gene Simmons Attempts to Trademark Devil’s Horn Hand Sign

Even among casual music fans, Gene Simmons and the band KISS are well known and easily recognizable. With their elaborate make-up and costuming, the rock band has iconic status, and although they have been performing for multiple decades, only just recently Simmons decided to file for trademark protection on one of his signature symbols, the devil’s horn hand sign. But even with decades of use and a strong association with the band, the hand gesture may have too many hurdles to overcome for trademark protection.
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ganjagonia trademark dispute

Patagonia Challenges Trademark Application for Ganjagonia

It’s an interesting time for marijuana related businesses. At the state level, several states have given them a green light. On the federal level, however, the light is still very much red. In states where marijuana laws have been eased, entrepreneurs have been actively developing businesses around pot culture. But these entrepreneurs run into problems with federal trademark registration because the US Patent & Trademark Office is federally regulated. Trademark examiners have typically rejected marijuana related marks. However, one Colorado based web producer has passed the federal hurdle for his trademark application on Ganjagonia – a marijuana themed web cartoon, but now faces a more traditional trademark challenge from an actual company, as the outdoor retailer Patagonia is challenging his trademark application. Continue reading “Patagonia Challenges Trademark Application for Ganjagonia”

Hasbro Play Doh Trademark

Hasbro Seeking Trademark Protection on Distinctive Play-Doh Scent

Few smells can transport someone back to childhood like the distinctive scent of opening a can of Play-Doh. The unique fragrance, in use since 1955, is a clear signal that you are about to play with the official Hasbro modeling clay. After more than 60 years of production, Hasbro is now taking steps to make sure that the scent remains a clear indication that you have official Play-Doh and not some other imitator. That’s why Hasbro recently filed for federal trademark protection on the Play-Doh smell.
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chipotle trademark

Chipotle’s New Burger Business May Have Hit a Trademark Snag

In spite of a few recent hiccups, Chipotle has done pretty well in the Mexican food market. Now, the Denver based company wants to expand its business to include a burger chain. The name and logo the group chose may be problematic though, as a Boston based burger chain says that the branding infringes on its trademark.

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no trademark for whole foods

Trademark Office Rejects Whole Food’s Trademark Application

Whole Foods has marketed itself as a healthy and organic grocer and claims that it is “America’s Healthiest Grocery Store”. This branding effort has paid off as consumers tend to view the brand as a fresh alternative to big box grocery stores. But the Trademark Office recently put a damper on the grocery chain’s health hype when it rejected the company’s attempt to trademark “World’s Healthiest Grocery Store” because the mark is “self-laudatory” or a “puffing mark.”

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Park City Trademark

Locals Protest Park City Trademark Application

After several hundred protestors turned out in Park City, Utah to fight Vail Resorts attempt to register the trademark “Park City”, the business group has decided to abandon its trademark application. This is a change of course for the Colorado based ski resort ownership, which had been pursuing trademark protection on its recently acquired Utah asset, Park City Mountain Resort. Local residents are now relieved to know that the name of the town will not be trademarked and local businesses will have less concern over branding conflicts.
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The Slants

USPTO Appeals to the Supreme Court Over “Slants”.

An appeal to the United States Supreme Court is the latest move in an ongoing battle between the Asian-American band “The Slants” and the USPTO over whether the band’s name is disparaging and should be granted trademark registration or not. After a panel of Federal Appeals Court judges reversed the Trademark Office’s decision rejecting the mark, the Office has now appealed to the highest court in the land in an effort to allow it to retain discretion over whether some marks are too offensive for registration. Time will now tell whether the Supreme Court will accept the case and continue its increasingly active role in intellectual property law.

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Milano Cookie

Milano Cookie Trademark: Pepperidge Farms versus Trader Joe’s

While a traditional cookie is round, they can come in all kinds of delicious shapes and sizes. A cookie that ventures outside the cookie shape norm is Pepperidge Farms’ Milano cookie. The Milano is a distinctive oval shaped cookie sandwich with chocolate in the middle. It has been a big hit for Pepperidge Farms and they intend to keep it that way. That’s why they recently filed a lawsuit for trademark infringement against Trader Joe’s alleging Trader Joe’s Crispy Cookies infringe the look and package design of Pepperidge Farm’s iconic Milano cookies. Continue reading “Milano Cookie Trademark: Pepperidge Farms versus Trader Joe’s”

Donald Trump Trademark

Trump Trademark Registration: “Make America Great Again” Campaign Slogan

Donald Trump may be an outsider when it comes to politics, but he is certainly not an outsider when it comes to business. Unquestionably he understands the importance of creating a brand and protecting it. Obviously, that’s why he filed a trademark application in anticipation of a presidential run on the phrase “Make America Great Again”. The USPTO granted Trump a trademark registration for this mark for political action committees service and political fundraising. With this registration in hand, Trump is looking to expand his trademark protection into other classes as well. Indeed, Trump has filed three additional trademark registration applications with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

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Guitarist playing an electric guitar. Shallow depth of field. Grunge filter.

Federal Appeals Court to Review “The Slants” Trademark Application

Portland, Oregon based rock band “The Slants” isn’t planning to change its name anytime soon. It just wants the Trademark Office to recognize its chosen name and grant it a trademark registration. After determining that “The Slants” is a disparaging term and rejecting its application, the Trademark Office has stuck to its guns despite multiple attempts by the band to appeal the decision. The band now rests its hopes in a panel of federal appeals judges, hoping they will overrule the U.S Patent and Trademark Office. The question of whether free speech rights should trump trademark law’s prohibition on immoral, scandalous or disparaging marks will now go before this group. Continue reading “Federal Appeals Court to Review “The Slants” Trademark Application”