Friday, June 1, 2007

TMBC now on WordPress

TMBC is now fully functional on my hosted WordPress blog.

Please visit tmbrandingcap.com for new updates.

All old posts have migrated.

Subscribe in a reader to the New and Improved TMBC.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

New WordPress Version

I've decided to make the switch to a hosted WordPress installation for this blog. Please visit tmbrandingcap.com for further posts. I am excited about exploring the many options and plug-ins available to WordPress.

I'm in the process of migrating over my old posts, but for some reason it is agonizingly slow. So don't be surprised if you see the old posts migrating over a period of days. The connection between my server and blogger seems to be timing out after a second or two. And at 114 posts, the migration will be very slow.

I've always liked the look of Scarcliff's blog at Cultural Branding: Naming Language Design Experience. As I was thinking about the switch to WordPress, I found out that they're using the Cutline WordPress Theme developed by Chris Pearson, and now owned and managed by Brian Gardner. Chris designed the look for the great blog Copyblogger and released the Copyblogger Theme for WordPress. Well, long story short, I'm using the Cutline theme for the new TMBC. Hope you like it as much as I do.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Band Agreement Checklist

Thinking of starting or forming a band? Danica Mathes has a nice article with a list of issues to consider in drafting a band agreement.

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Any takers?


My blog is worth $9,032.64.
How much is your blog worth?

Hat tip: Red Hot Copywriting

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Fast Company on Brand Authenticity

Some branding articles from the May 2007 issue of Fast Company

Slide show: What Makes a Brand Authentic

Who Do You Love? (The appeal -- and risks -- of authenticity)

Will the Real Juan Valdez Please Stand Up? (To evoke authenticity, marketers use many tactics. Here's how five pairs of industry rivals tackle the challenge.)

An Authenticity Timeline (From Disney's opening of Main Street USA in 1955 to user-generated content, here's a look at how authenticity has evolved over time.)

Sixth Circuit vacates order in Ford Motor Company v. Mustangs Unlimited

The Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals vacated the district court's order setting aside the parties consent judgment. (Ford Motor Company v. Mustangs Unlimited, Inc.)

Ford claimed that Mustangs breached the terms of its consent judgment by continuing to sell automobile accessories and other merchandise bearing the Ford trademarks. The district court agreed and set aside the consent judgment.

The Sixth Circuit vacated the order because the record showed no basis upon which the Sixth Circuit could hold that the district court acted within its discretion in granting relief from judgment in the case.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Donald, I love you on Howard, but things don't seem to be going well

Mark Cuban calls out the Donald and has this to say about what Trump could do now that he "quit" The Apprentice:

You can travel the world over and give speeches on brand dilution. Explaining how a brand that was once synonymous with the finest real estate in the world is now synonymous with a canceled TV show, water, steaks, a doll, vodka, a perfume, a game and an online University that tries to sell questionable advice and products and is one of the biggest spammers on the Internet.


Ouch. Trump held a "free" seminar here in Columbus a few months back. I signed up to go to see what it's all about, but I had to clip my toenails that night, so I didn't go.

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STL on Litigation Websites

The Seattle Trademark Lawyer has a nice post on the impact of litigation websites on publicity and sales.

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Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Even potheads infringe trademarks from time to time

Hershey Co. recently sued convicted trafficer Kenneth Affolter for selling pot-laced treats and soft drinks with the names Stoney Rancher, Rasta Reese's and Keef Kat. Bummer dude.

UPDATE 5/23: Stoners unite to boycott Hershey.

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Friday, May 11, 2007

DerbyBox.com gallops over Kentucky Derby

TicketNews.com reports that ticket broker DerbyBox.com did not violate the terms of its Consent Decree with Churchill Downs.

Friday, May 4, 2007

Oscar Trademark Cases

The Holloywood Reporter, Esq. reports on two lawsuits brought by Oscar owner the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

The first involves AMPAS's suit against the website Oscarwatch.com for trademark infringement [complaint]. THR, ESQ. quote's AMPAS's attorney, which sounds like a good PR quote to me:

"The Academy isn't really pursuing monetary damages," said David Quinto of Quinn Emanuel Urquhart Oliver & Hedges. "The Academy's interest here is putting a stop to the offensive conduct and not in trying to make a buck."


The second suit is against broadcaster RAI International, who produces two Italian-language programs with the name "Wine Oscars" and "Fashion Oscars." The shows are distributed in the US by EchoStar.

While I haven't yet read the court's decision dening AMPAS's motion for summary judgment, this quote certainly peaked my interest:

Whether the practice violates U.S. law remains to be seen. A judge in March refused an Academy motion for summary judgment against RAI, suggesting cultural semantic distinctions might mean that Italians view the word Oscar more generically than Americans.


THR, ESQ's original story on "Oscar" being possibly generic in Italian here.

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Thursday, May 3, 2007

INN = Generic

What's INN? INN stands for International Nonproprietary Names which are the generic names used to identify pharmaceutical substances or active pharmaceutical ingredients. It's a list of some 7000 names maintained by the World Health Organization. The purpose of INN is

to provide health professionals with a unique and universally available designated name to identify each pharmaceutical substance. The existence of an international nomenclature for pharmaceutical substances, in the form of INN, is important for the clear identification, safe prescription and dispensing of medicines to patients, and for communication and exchange of information among health professionals and scientists worldwide.

So what's the trademark significance of INN's? According to the WHO:

Over the years, the need to maintain the integrity of the INN system has become urgent. This is reflected in the following extract from the Fifth Report of the WHO Expert Committee on the Use of Essential Drugs which met in November 1991 :

"The procedure for selecting INNs allows manufacturers to contest names that are either identical or similar to their licensed trade-marks. In contrast, trade-mark applications are disallowed, in accordance with the present procedure, only when they are identical to an INN. A case for increased protection of INNs is now apparent as a result of competitive promotion of products no longer protected by patents. Rather than marketing these products under generic name, many companies apply for a trade-mark derived from an INN and, in particular, including the INN common stem. This practice endangers the principle that INNs are public property; it can frustrate the rational selection of further INNs for related substances, and it will ultimately compromise the safety of patients by promoting confusion in drug nomenclature."

These concerns were debated during the sixth International Conference of Drug Regulatory Authorities (ICDRA), in Ottawa, in October 1991. Based on recommendations made by the WHO Expert Committee on the use of Essential Drugs, the resolution WHA46.19 on Nonproprietary names for pharmaceutical substances was adopted by the Forty-sixth World Health Assembly in 1993, requesting Member States to:

- "…enact rules or regulations, as necessary, to ensure that international nonproprietary names (or the equivalent nationally approved generic names) used in the labelling and advertising of pharmaceutical products are always displayed prominently; - …encourage manufacturers to rely on their corporate name and the international nonproprietary names, rather than on trade-marks, to promote and market multisource products introduced after the expiry of a patent; - …develop policy guidelines on the use and protection of international nonproprietary names, and to discourage the use of names derived from them, and particularly names including established stems, as trade-marks."

In the note verbale, attention is drawn to this resolution concerning the use and protection of INN.

As a matter of principle, it may thus be recommended that trade-marks should not be derived from INN. In particular, the intentional incorporation of meaningful INN stems in trade-marks should be avoided.


So, pharaceutical companies, when naming their next blockbuster drug will, in addition to a trademark search, will conduct an INN search. For instance, the job description for Trademark Counsel with GlaxoSmithKline includes "INN search and clearance."

If you're looking for a place to search for INNs, IP Australia has a search engine for INNs.

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Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Backstory on the Fig Newton - Fig Newmans license

So I was reading my wife's Marie Claire yesterday and came across this interesting backstory on the licensing of the Fig Newton trademark. [Yes, I'm not ashamed to say that I read my wife's magazines. I'm a bit of a magazine junkie.]

Newman's Own Organics sell a fig cookie called Fig Newmans™. According to NOO's website:

The new cookie wouldn't have come to fruition without the cooperation of Kraft, as the name is being used under license from them. "We really salute Kraft for all their help with our Fig Newmans™," states Paul Newman.


Here's what Paul's daughter Nell told Marie Claire about the licensing:

Q: How did you ever convince Nabisco, the original owner of Fig Newtons, to let you use the name “Fig Newmans” for your fig bars?

A: My dad wrote a very sweet, short letter to the president of Nabisco that said, “My daughter’s got a great idea for a product. Could we sit down and talk about a small royalty deal? All the profits will go to charity.” And the guy just sent back a letter that said, “Dear Paul, I love what you’re doing, we’ll just say it’s a dollar a year, and I’d love to sit down and have a beer with you.” The legal department of Nabisco had a fit, but there was nothing they could do.

Way to go Nabisco/Kraft. From this, they've earned some good trademark karma and some good PR to boot.

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Tuesday, May 1, 2007

More on the Red Hat / Hibernate trademark hubbub

Follow up to this post. Just found Bill Dudney's post regarding the adverse reaction to Red Hat's trademark enforcement. Bill offers an excellent analysis on why the open source community reacted as it did. He also argues that "RedHat is not evil for enforcing their trademarks." Hear hear!

Again, they have every right to enforce the use of their trademarks. I’m not arguing against that at all. The issue is ownership. It is one company (and only one company) that owns the trademark. The thousands of developers that invested in groking Hibernate, JBoss etc have zero ownership in that trademark. They can’t do anything with the mark that is not allowed by the owner or law. So from my current understanding I could offer ‘Training for the Hibernate Implementation of JPA’. Some might ask, well is that so onerous to you? Is it that much trouble to put the extra verbiage into the marketing stuff? No its not, and you can bet if I ever publicly offer anything related to Hibernate or JBoss I will be putting that verbiage in.
Side note: be sure to check out the link to Simon Phipps' presentation on The Zen of Open.

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Monday, April 30, 2007

Now if we can just get Google to index state trademark databases

From cnet - Googling state government documents

Trademarks and Open Source

More news on the open source / trademark front. eWeek reports on Ubuntu's trademark policy.

Trademarks have recently become something of an issue in open-source circles. Debian, for example, recently took exception to Mozilla's Firefox trademark rules and called its version of the popular browser, IceWeasel. So, Ubuntu has decided to address possible trademark issues by creating its own trademark policy.
As many of you know, open source licenses generally grant the licensee the right to freely modify and distribute the subject software's source code. In essence, open source takes away the copyright restrictions that so many proprietary software companies use to protect their code.

However, open source licenses do not grant the licensee rights to use the licensor's trademarks. In fact, trademarks rights are enforced strictly by companies that distribute branded open source software.

As Mark Webbink, Red Hat's deputy general counsel and secretary, said in 2004, Red Hat has no problems with anyone using its source code. But Red Hat does have problems with anyone using its name or its trademark "shadowman." That, Webbink said, Red Hat guards zealously. "In the open-source economy, it's the Red Hat brand, as well as its service, that carry value."


Thus, as eWeek points out, while CentOS' operating system is derived from Red Hat's code, it can't use the Red Hat trademark to identify its code. And so CentOS says that "CentOS is an Enterprise-class Linux Distribution derived from sources freely provided to the public by a prominent North American Enterprise Linux vendor."

So open source companies such as Red Hat and Ubuntu sell commodities and build their value by building brands that customers prefer. If the value of these companies exist solely in the brand, then you'd expect them to vigourously protect their trademarks. See excerpt from Open Sources: Voices from the Open Source Revolution talking about Red Hat:

If we do not own intellectual property the way almost all of today's software companies do, and if those companies insist that their most valuable asset is the intellectual property represented by the source code to the software they own, then it is safe to say that Red Hat is not in the Software Business. Red Hat is not licensing intellectual property over which it has ownership. That's not the economic model that will support our customers, staff, and shareholders. So the question became: What business are we in?

The answer was to look around at other industries and try and find one that matched. We wanted an industry where the basic ingredients were free, or at least freely available. ...

We looked at the commodity industries and began to recognize some ideas. All leading companies selling commodity products, including bottled water (Perrier or Evian), the soap business (Tide), or the tomato paste business (Heinz), base their marketing strategies on building strong brands. These brands must stand for quality, consistency, and reliability. We saw something in the brand management of these commodity products that we thought we could emulate. ...

This was Red Hat's opportunity: to offer convenience, to offer quality, and most importantly to help define, in the minds of our customers, what an operating system can be. At Red Hat, if we do a good job of supplying and supporting a consistently high-quality product, we have a great opportunity to establish a brand that Linux OS customers simply prefer. ...

The power of brands translate very effectively into the technology business. We have evidence of this in the Venture Capital investors who have recently invested in several Open Source software companies. The one common denominator between all of the investments to date have been that the companies or their products have great name recognition, and are recognized as being quality products. In other words, they have successfully established a brand.



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Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Good Bank Brands Make Bad Bank Trademarks

Law review article by John M. Conley and Jayne C. Hunter - The Curse of History: Good Bank Brands Make Bad Bank Trademarks.

From the conclusion:

From a normative standpoint, it is clear that trademark law has never offered any special accommodations to the banking business, and shows no likelihood of doing so in the future. Nor should it. Unlike patent and some aspects of copyright law, which have developed highly technical and frequently unpredictable doctrines, trademark decisions have consistently been based on common-sense assessments of how consumer markets work. Although new technologies have sometimes posed novel questions (for example, whether use of someone else’s trademark as an Internet metatag is infringement), the framing of the analyses has been remarkably consistent and the answers given tolerably predictable over time and across industries. Neither banking’s economic and social significance nor its quirky history creates a mandate for special treatment.

This means that banking must come to terms with trademark law in its present state. As the case law we have reviewed indicates, banking has seemingly ignored trademark law for much of its history. There may have been understandable reasons for this in the past, but those reasons are now irrelevant. As bankers (and their lawyers) show increasing interest in making aggressive “offensive” use of trademarks, they must do the work of understanding how trademarks are established, strengthened, and protected. With that in mind, we offer the following practical thoughts:




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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Brough Superior Trademarks for Sale

Auctioneer Bonhams & Butterfields has for sale the ‘Brough Superior’ Trademark and Logos. This Lot consists of the UK, European Community and Japan rights to the trademark and company name, ‘Brough Superior Engineering Limited’ and its associated logos. [HT: Motor Cyclist]

The Trademark, ‘Brough Superior Engineering Limited’ is registered in the UK under ‘1457563’ (renewable in September 2009) [TMBC Note, the number is a misprint, it should be 1467563] Trademark Journal ‘6232’. The European Community application number is ‘1093392’. The Japan trademark application is number ‘11-68981’, Certificate of Trademark Registration ‘4392842’ [run search for "BROUGH" here, then click on "Index" to see results].

However, US Reg. No. 2553038 for BROUGH SUPERIOR is not for sale. Perhaps it's because the US owner, Alan Scott Kvasnik of Minneapolis Minnesota, is not the same owner as listed in the UK and European Community mark, Alec Card of the UK. If I were the purchaser, I'd want to see what's up with this. After all, the US is a big market, and the estimated price for the trademark is $220,000 to $250,000.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Friday Rush - Train Speed Record

Not trademark or branding related, but what a rush. Watch as Alstom, the French Rail Network and SNCF break the world rail speed record by attaining the speed of 574.8 km/hr (that's 357.16 miles per hour for us Americans). Interesting that the record speed had to be officially ratified by two lawyers!



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Amazon sues Alexaholic and the Web 2.0 community is not happy

Alex Graham has an excellent post about the trademark/IP dust up between Amazon's Alexa Internet and Ron Hornbaker, creator of the very popular alexaholic.com (now known as statsaholic.com).

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Copyright issues on the Trademark Blog

Venturing off the trademark path, Marty Schwimmer has a nice post regarding the use of music in audio visual works. His short post illustrates the complexities involved.

Google renames Froogle to Google Product Search

CNet news story here.

Acknowledging that it's better to be clear than clever, Google is rebranding "Froogle" as "Google Product Search" ... The ill-named Froogle was a problem from the start. "I don't think we understood the complications with rolling out another brand," Marissa Mayer, Google's vice president of search product and user experience, said in an interview with CNET News.com. "While it was a cute and clever name, it had issues around copyright and trademark, as well as internationalization…The pun (to "frugal") isn't obvious."

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Unnecessarily long trademarks

From time to time I run into what appears to be excessively long trademarks. For example, check out this long mark:

JUST PLAIN JOE COFFEE COMPANY "GOURMET COFFEE AT A REASONABLE PRICE" THE JUST PLAIN JOE COFFEE COMPANY, IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE CAROLINA COFFEE ROASTING COMPANY, GOES ALL-OUT TO BRING YOU THE FRESHEST WHOLE BEAN COFFEE WITHOUT ALL THE PRICEY TRAPPINGS. OUR IDEA IS THAT A FIRST-RATE CUP OF COFFEE SHOULDN'T COST AN ARM AND A LEG AND OUGHT NOT FORCE YOU TO HOCK YOUR STUFF TO BUY A POUND OR TWO. OUR HOPE IS THAT YOU ENJOY THIS REASONABLY PRICED COFFEE AS MUCH AS WE ENJOY PRODUCING IT FOR YOU PROUD TO BE AN AMERICAN COMPANY P.O. BOX 884, STEVENSVILLE, MD 21666 NET. WT. 1 LB


The trademark owner, who filed the application himself online, meant to register JUST PLAIN JOE COFFEE COMPANY.



But instead of selecting a "Standard Characters" mark, the applicant selected "Special Form (Stylized and/or Design)."



And then he attached an image containing the above text:


I'm pretty certain Joe didn't mean to register such a long mark. He just didn't realize that the PTO considers all of the literal elements of the submitted image as the "word mark." While the applicant saved money in attorney fees, he did pay the following fees to obtain registration of the above mark:

$335 - processing fee
$100 - petition fee to revive (11/21/2005)
$150 - extension of time to file statement of use (11/21/2005)
$100 - petition fee to revive (3/24/2006)
$150 - extension of time to file statement of use (3/24/2006)
$100 - statement of use

Related: Erik J. Heels' pointer to the mark:

THE SLEEP SHOP (NOTE: IF THIS NAME IS NOT ACCEPTABLE, AS AN ALTERNATIVE, I WOULD BE SATISFIED WITH THE TRADEMARK "THE SLEEP SHOPPE")


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Interview with Trademark Attorney Scott Duvall

The Seattle Trademark Lawyer links to an interview with Mosley's Trademark Attorney Scott Duvall. Nice link.

Friday, April 13, 2007

The Sanjaya Brand Association Map

Related to my Sanjaya trademark post, now comes the Sanjaya Brand Association Map from Nielsen BuzzMetrics. Here's a discussion over at the Consumer Generated Media blog.




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Thursday, April 12, 2007

What is Electix?

What is Electix? That's what the site electix.net asks. The site will reveal what electix is on July 21, 2007. In the meantime, it conducting a contest to win 1 in 20 of the main product or service which 'electix' will offer visitors.

Okay, I'll take a stab. I searched the USPTO, WIPO, EU, and UK trademark databases, but did not come up with one hit on the exact search for ELECTIX. So moving on, I checked out the whois record. The Registrant Contact info is Firebath Music and Mark Newby or Manchester, Great Britain. So maybe the company has something to do with the concert and event ticket business, hence the "tix" at the end. But alas, maybe I'm wrong because advert-eyes says that the site was created by advertising agency Firebath Creations whose studio manager is Mark Newby. But, also advert-eyes says that Firebath's client is Garcon Limited. As does electix's privacy page.

So just who is Garcon Limited? It appears it was created on February 21, 2006 with an address in Leeds, West Yorkshire. Or is it Le Garcon Limited? This is pretty much a dead end, since I don't want to pay for corporate documents for a little fun investigation.

Turning back to electix, I googled it (um, sorry, I performed an internet search for the term electix using the Google search engine). Looks like a test forum with the title electix was created on March 21, 2007. There's a manufacturing company from Connecticut by the name Electix, Inc. It's most likely not the right one. It's a band from the UK. It's also the name of a Pakistani company. But, at least potentially troubling for Garcon, it's the name and trademark of a site claiming to be "The Ultimate Gadget Site" from The Netherlands.

It appears Electix has done a good job in hiding what they aim to be. So I guess, your guess is as good as mine.

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No Sanjaya trademarks ... yet

I'm voting for Sanjaya! Are you? Seriously, I suspect that it's only a matter of time that we see a trademark application for SANJAYA.
After all, William Hung applied for registration (since abandoned).

Martha Stewart Katonah Update

Opposition to Martha Stewart's KATONAH trademark applications. News Report. Opposition Numbers 91176691 and 91176705.


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Limited Stores sues Quiksilver for trademark infringement

Columbus, Ohio based Limited Stores, LLC sued Quiksilver, Inc. for trademark infringement over Quiksilver's use of "The Limited Collection" (link to Women's Wear Daily story).

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Wednesday, April 11, 2007

8 criteria of a credibility based logo

Dr. Bill Haig guest writes over on The Credibility Branding Blog on Credibility Based Logo Design (part 1, part 2).

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Happy Ernst and Young day

I'm thinking that the folks over at Ernst & Young did not think of the negative branding effect (also here, here, and here) of what appears to be an E&Y recruitment video.

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SEC filings - full text search

It's about time! The SEC now allows for full text searching of EDGAR filings from the last four years. What an excellent source for competitive intelligence. For example, from the trademark prospective, I ran the search "trademark license" and found the following agreements:

Now if only we can get the PTO to initiate full text searching on TDR and TTAB documents.

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Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Foreign Trademark Owner Statistics

How many trademark records exists for foreign based owners? 3,625,679.

Here's the search strategy:

not ("united states" Alabama Alaska Arizona Arkansas California Colorado Connecticut Delaware Florida Georgia Hawaii Idaho Illinois Indiana Iowa Kansas Kentucky Louisiana Maine Maryland Massachusetts Michigan Minnesota Mississippi Missouri Montana Nebraska Nevada "New Hampshire" "New Jersey" "New Mexico" "New York" "North Carolina" "North Dakota" Ohio Oklahoma Oregon Pennsylvania "Rhode Island" "South Carolina" "South Dakota" Tennessee Texas Utah Vermont Virginia Washington "West Virginia" Wisconsin Wyoming "american samoa" "federated states of micronesia" guam "northern mariana islands" "midway islands" "puerto rico" "u.s. virgin islands" "us virgin islands")[ow]

Okay, taking that search, I wanted to see what filing basis foreign owners use. So, here's the results:

1A (Filed under Section §1(a) {use in commerce}) - 153,409
1B (Filed under Section §1(b) {intent to use}) - 292,961
44D (Filed under Section §44(d) {foreign application}) - 139,686
44E (Filed under Section §44(e) {foreign registration}) - 96,358
66A (Filed under Section §66(a)) - 35,377
NO FILING BASIS (No filing basis claimed) - 555

So as with my filing habits post, the majority of foreign owners file under an intent to use basis, rather than based on a foreign trademark application or registration. But the numbers may be incomplete, becuase when you add up the above basis numbers you get 718,346. What happened to the other 2,907,333 records? What basis were they filed under? Most likely, the PTO did not record original filing basis from way back. If anyone knows the reason, please leave a comment in the comment section.

Here's the complete search strategies for the above results:

153,409
1a[ob] not ("united states" Alabama Alaska Arizona Arkansas California Colorado Connecticut Delaware Florida Georgia Hawaii Idaho Illinois Indiana Iowa Kansas Kentucky Louisiana Maine Maryland Massachusetts Michigan Minnesota Mississippi Missouri Montana Nebraska Nevada "New Hampshire" "New Jersey" "New Mexico" "New York" "North Carolina" "North Dakota" Ohio Oklahoma Oregon Pennsylvania "Rhode Island" "South Carolina" "South Dakota" Tennessee Texas Utah Vermont Virginia Washington "West Virginia" Wisconsin Wyoming "american samoa" "federated states of micronesia" guam "northern mariana islands" "midway islands" "puerto rico" "u.s. virgin islands" "us virgin islands")[ow]


292,961
1b[ob] not ("united states" Alabama Alaska Arizona Arkansas California Colorado Connecticut Delaware Florida Georgia Hawaii Idaho Illinois Indiana Iowa Kansas Kentucky Louisiana Maine Maryland Massachusetts Michigan Minnesota Mississippi Missouri Montana Nebraska Nevada "New Hampshire" "New Jersey" "New Mexico" "New York" "North Carolina" "North Dakota" Ohio Oklahoma Oregon Pennsylvania "Rhode Island" "South Carolina" "South Dakota" Tennessee Texas Utah Vermont Virginia Washington "West Virginia" Wisconsin Wyoming "american samoa" "federated states of micronesia" guam "northern mariana islands" "midway islands" "puerto rico" "u.s. virgin islands" "us virgin islands")[ow]


139,686
44d[ob] not ("united states" Alabama Alaska Arizona Arkansas California Colorado Connecticut Delaware Florida Georgia Hawaii Idaho Illinois Indiana Iowa Kansas Kentucky Louisiana Maine Maryland Massachusetts Michigan Minnesota Mississippi Missouri Montana Nebraska Nevada "New Hampshire" "New Jersey" "New Mexico" "New York" "North Carolina" "North Dakota" Ohio Oklahoma Oregon Pennsylvania "Rhode Island" "South Carolina" "South Dakota" Tennessee Texas Utah Vermont Virginia Washington "West Virginia" Wisconsin Wyoming "american samoa" "federated states of micronesia" guam "northern mariana islands" "midway islands" "puerto rico" "u.s. virgin islands" "us virgin islands")[ow]


96,358
44e[ob] not ("united states" Alabama Alaska Arizona Arkansas California Colorado Connecticut Delaware Florida Georgia Hawaii Idaho Illinois Indiana Iowa Kansas Kentucky Louisiana Maine Maryland Massachusetts Michigan Minnesota Mississippi Missouri Montana Nebraska Nevada "New Hampshire" "New Jersey" "New Mexico" "New York" "North Carolina" "North Dakota" Ohio Oklahoma Oregon Pennsylvania "Rhode Island" "South Carolina" "South Dakota" Tennessee Texas Utah Vermont Virginia Washington "West Virginia" Wisconsin Wyoming "american samoa" "federated states of micronesia" guam "northern mariana islands" "midway islands" "puerto rico" "u.s. virgin islands" "us virgin islands")[ow]


35,377
66a[ob] not ("united states" Alabama Alaska Arizona Arkansas California Colorado Connecticut Delaware Florida Georgia Hawaii Idaho Illinois Indiana Iowa Kansas Kentucky Louisiana Maine Maryland Massachusetts Michigan Minnesota Mississippi Missouri Montana Nebraska Nevada "New Hampshire" "New Jersey" "New Mexico" "New York" "North Carolina" "North Dakota" Ohio Oklahoma Oregon Pennsylvania "Rhode Island" "South Carolina" "South Dakota" Tennessee Texas Utah Vermont Virginia Washington "West Virginia" Wisconsin Wyoming "american samoa" "federated states of micronesia" guam "northern mariana islands" "midway islands" "puerto rico" "u.s. virgin islands" "us virgin islands")[ow]


555
("no filing basis")[ob] not ("united states" Alabama Alaska Arizona Arkansas California Colorado Connecticut Delaware Florida Georgia Hawaii Idaho Illinois Indiana Iowa Kansas Kentucky Louisiana Maine Maryland Massachusetts Michigan Minnesota Mississippi Missouri Montana Nebraska Nevada "New Hampshire" "New Jersey" "New Mexico" "New York" "North Carolina" "North Dakota" Ohio Oklahoma Oregon Pennsylvania "Rhode Island" "South Carolina" "South Dakota" Tennessee Texas Utah Vermont Virginia Washington "West Virginia" Wisconsin Wyoming "american samoa" "federated states of micronesia" guam "northern mariana islands" "midway islands" "puerto rico" "u.s. virgin islands" "us virgin islands")[ow]


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Wednesday, April 4, 2007

What the Duck - Copywrong


What the Duck is my new favorite cartoon. The author even allows reproducing the strip on blogs: "What the Duck is an online comic strip. Viewers are welcome to link, post, copy/paste, or save the strips to their own sites, blogs, forums, newsletters, etc."

More place name news

Recall the hubbub going on about Martha Stewart applying to register the name of the town Katonah as a trademark for indoor lighting, paints, home furnishings, and furniture. Well, I agree with The Trademark Blog's assessment on the issue.

But what to think of this?

The Orange County Register reports on Coto de Caza resident Joseph Lewis Aguirre's trademarking activities. It appears Mr. Aguirre has applied for trademark registration on Coto de Caza and other California communities.

In fact, Mr. Aguirre has the mark COTO DE CAZA registered on the supplemental register for "retail store service and online retail store services featuring a wide variety of consumer goods for others, namely, hats, golf equipment, golf accessories and clothing suitable for golf course wear."

According to the OCR, Mr. Aguirre contacted the Coto de Caza Golf & Racket Club demanding payment of some sort:


Aquirre applied for trademark registration of many of the symbols used by the Coto de Caza Golf & Racquet Club, but that registration has not yet been granted according to the government's Web site.

"He (Aguirre) made contact with us. According to our legal department he has no standing. We have not paid him any money," said Matthew Gabos, director of operations at the club.

He also contacted various other organizations telling them to cease using his trademarks.

On March 4, Aguirre wrote a letter to the CZ Master Homeowners' Association saying it did not have permission to use his trademarks, including community names and symbols that have long been used by the association and other area businesses.

"He tried to tell us we could not use the name 'Coto de Caza,'" said Bob Varo, president of the CZ Masters' Association board of directors.


For some reason the comments in the OCR story are not too complementary towards Mr. Aguirre. Wonder why?

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Thursday, March 29, 2007

I ♥ NC opposition dismissed


The News & Observer reports that the New York State Department of Economic Development's opposition to the registration of "I ♥ NC" was recently dismissed by the Patent and Trademark Office. NYSDED opposed stating that the I ♥ NC mark is likely to cause confusion with its I ♥ NY mark. Unfortunately for NYSDED, it didn't properly introduce into the record its priority of use of the I ♥ NY mark.
The TTAB stated that there are two aspects to a likelihood of confusion claim: priority and likelihood of confusion. The TTAB didn't get to the issue of likelihood of confusion because NYSDED failed to prove that it has made use of any trademarks and thus it cannot show priority of use.


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Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Blawg Bracket

Inspired by the Brand Autopsy's Marketing Bloggers Bracketology post, I decided to put up a bracket for blawgs, i.e. legal blogs. This is for entertainment purposes only, so please, no betting.

Anyways, the blogs that I included are those that I'm aware of, or of blogs that were linked to from other blogs. Of course, I'm certain that I've excluded some very fine law blogs, and to those blogs I apologize.

I determined ranking by way of the number of links each blog has on Google. For example, the number one ranked blog, The Volokh Conspiracy, has 39,800 links to it. Enjoy.

UPDATE: By the way, I purposely left out TMBC, which would have been a 16 seed in the East with 144 hits. If that were the case, I'm sure I would have been thoroughly trounced by Professor Bainbridge.








Blawg Hits Seed
The Volokh Conspiracy 39800 1M
lessig blog 26400 1W
Professor Bainbridge 19700 1E
Balkinization 14500 1S
Over Lawyered 11800 2M
Scotus blog 11300 2W
Freedom to Tinker 10400 2E
PrawfsBlawg 8140 2S
Bag and Baggage 7710 3M
Ernie the Attorney 7440 3W
Point of Law 7030 3E
Concurring Opinions 7010 3S
WSJ.com Law Blog 6720 4M
Be Spacific 6240 4W
Copyfight 5520 4E
LawMeme 5090 4S
JURIST - Paper Chase 4770 5M
Dennis Kennedy 4680 5W
Susan Crawford blog 4650 5E
The Patry Copyright Blog 4000 5S
Above the Law 3720 6M
Adam Smith, Esq. 3610 6W
Blawg Review 3430 6E
The Legal Reader 3410 6S
The Trademark Blog 3400 7M
Sports Law Blog 3370 7W
Patently O 3130 7E
May it Please the Court 3100 7S
Appellate Law & Practice 2620 8M
Silicon Valley Media Law Blog 2370 8W
Arbitrary and Capricious 2290 8E
PHOSITA 2160 8S
bIPlog at boalt.org 2020 9S
I/P Updates 1970 9E
Technology & Marketing Law Blog 1840 9W
GrepLaw 1830 9M
Law Pundit 1790 10S
IPKat 1720 10E
Likelihood of Confusion 1520 10W
The Barrister Blog 1410 10M
f/k/a … 1300 11S
InHouse Blog 1290 11E
Internet Cases 1150 11W
Consensus at Lawyerpoint 1100 11M
Info/Law 983 12S
Counterfeit Chic 850 12E
Florida Intellectual Property Law Blog 800 12W
The Invent Blog 784 12M
271 Patent Blog 748 13S
The TTABlog 663 13E
43(B)log 626 13W
Mass Law Blog 325 13M
Have Opinion, Will Travel 320 14S
Academic Copyright 301 14E
The Becker-Posner Blog 234 14W
Guiding Rights Blog 223 14M
Erik J. Heels 184 15S
Now, Why Didn't I Think of That? 181 15E
Inside the Firm of the Future 175 15W
Human Law 160 15M
Photo Attorney 148 16S
Canadian Trademark Blog 129 16E
ICANN Watch 82 16W
Seattle Trademark Lawyer 74 16M
Likely to be Confused 41 Bubble
Legal Fixation 36 Bubble
Cobalt 32 Bubble
Patry Treatise Blog 23 Bubble
Golf Patents 22 Bubble
Bridging the Gap 0 Bubble

Katonah and Martha Stewart Update

A few months back, Marty Schwimmer posted about the uproar in Katonah, NY about Martha Stewart's attempt to register the mark KATONAH for indoor lighting, paints, home furnishings, and furniture.

The town expresses concern as to the effect that Martha Stewart's ownership of the KATONAH trademark. However, there will be no effect. The local businesses will continue to be able to truthfully claim that they are located in Katonah, even the furniture stores. They, like us, however, will not be able to use KATONAH as a trademark for the goods covered by Stewart's registrations. So, in the end, it's a good thing.

Now comes this news report about the Katonah Village Improvement Society's vote to "authorize its trademark committee to take whatever action it deems necessary regarding Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia's proposals to use the hamlet name for lines of furniture, paints and other homemaking products." The article further said that the vote authorized the trademark committee to file an opposition to the trademark application and authorized spending $200 toward legal cost.

In addition to the Katonah Village Improvement Society, the following entities have filed for extensions of time oppose: Katonah Architectural Hardware Limited, and Katonah Paint & Hardware, Inc.