Last week I had the honor of appearing on a panel with Commissioner of Trademark Deborah Cohn as part of an American Bar Association conference. The panel covered trademark prosecution tips.
Part of the discussion I presented was about non-traditional trademarks and the growing trend of brands protecting more and more trademarks that are not composed of words or logos.
What is registrable and protectable today? Successful and popular brands should consider protecting:
– Product and service names
– Product and service logos
– Domain names
– Features of products or services advertised or promoted with special names
– Mobile application names and icons
– Configurations of products and stores
Here are some of the more interesting non-traditional trademarks registered in the last two years:
Goods: women’s high fashion designer footwear
Description of Mark: The mark consists of a lacquered red sole on footwear. The dotted lines are not part of the mark but are intended only to show placement of the mark.
Owner: Christian Louboutin
Goods: Description of Mark: The mark consists of the sound of an oscillating humming buzz created by combining feedback from a microphone with a projector motor sound.
Owner: Lucasfilm Entertainment Company Ltd.
Goods: office supplies, namely, file folders, hanging folders, paper expanding files
Description of Mark: The mark consists of a peppermint scent or fragrance.
Owner: The Smead Manufacturing Company
Services: Advertising and marketing
Owner: Kalin Manchev
Description of Mark: The mark consists of a leather texture wrapping around the middle surface of a bottle of wine. The mark is a sensory, touch mark.
Owner: The David Family Group LLC
Goods: All-purpose straps; Straps for handling loads; Tie down straps
Description of Mark: The mark consists of the colors gold and black as used on straps, the color gold being used to cover the surface of the strap with a black line forming a border on each side of the strap. The broken or dotted lines on the outer perimeters of the mark are used to show the position of the mark on the goods and the broken lines in the repeated diamond pattern shape in the interior of the strap is not a feature of the mark but used to indicate texture.”
Owner: Kinedyne Corporation
Goods: plastic baseball bats
Description of Mark: The mark consists of the color yellow as applied to plastic baseball bats. The dotted lines show the placement of the mark on the identified goods.
Owner: The Wiffle Ball, Inc.
Services: presentation of intercollegiate sporting events and sports exhibitions rendered in a stadium, etc.
Description of Mark: The mark consists of the color blue used on the artifical turf in the stadium. The matter shown in broken lines on the drawing shows positioning of the mark and is not claimed as a feature of the mark.
Owner: Boise State University
Goods: Corn-based snack foods
Description of Mark: The mark consists of the configuration of a spiral-shaped chip.
Owner: FRITO-LAY NORTH AMERICA, INC.
Services: transmission of voice, audio, visual images and data by telecommunications networks, wireless communication networks, the Internet, information services networks and data networks
Description of Mark: The mark consists of a configuration of a human torso wearing a black collared shirt with rolled up sleeves and lime green tie with a traditional four in hand knot. The dotted lines in the drawing indicate placement of the mark. The matter shown by the dotted lines is not claimed as a part of the mark and serves only to show the position of the mark.’
Owner: The Madsen Group, LLC
Goods and Services: Carpet, furniture and drapery cleaning services; services for the restoration of structures and/or contents damaged by fire, water and other catastrophes; Mold remediation services
Description of Mark: The mark consists of the color green as applied to vehicles used to provide the services. The configuration of a vehicle shown by the dotted outline is intended to show the position of the mark on the vehicle and is not part of the mark.
Owner: Servpro Intellectual Property, Inc.
Description of Mark: The mark consists of a configuration of a red and white cake. A thick white ribbon appears crossing over the width and length of the top surface of the cake with a thick white ribbon placed on top of the intersection of the large plus sign design on the top surface of the cake simulating a large bow on top of the cake. The base of the cake contains a series of connected textured scalloped designs appearing in white. The color black appears within the ribbon, bow and scalloped designs to show texture and depth in the mark but is not claimed as a feature of the mark. The dotted lines represent the outline of the square shape and representation of the cake and are not claimed as a feature of the mark.
Owner: Image Brands, Inc. TA Red Velvet Cake
Goods: Candy mints
Description of Mark: The mark consists of a configuration of a rectangular tin container with a lid, with a red border around the outer perimeter of the lid of the tin.
Owner: Wm. Wrigley Jr. Company
Services: Tax preparation services
Description of Mark: The drawing is a two-dimensional representation of the mark, which consists of the nonfunctional elements of a three dimensional Statue of Liberty costume.
Owner: JTH Tax, Inc.
Services: Entertainment services, namely, baseball games, competitions and exhibitions rendered live and through broadcast media including television and radio, and via a global computer network or a commercial on-line service; live performances by costumed characters and performances …
Description of Mark: The mark consists of a costumed character wearing a baseball uniform and hat with the letter “B” on the hat and the wording “RED SOX” on the uniform. The mark is a two-dimensional depiction of a three-dimensional costumed character.
Owner: Boston Red Sox Baseball Club Limited Partnership
Services: Educational services, namely, providing courses of instruction in classrooms and on-line at the college, graduate, and doctorate levels, …
Description of Mark: The mark consists of the nonfunctional elements of a three-dimensional costume to be worn by a person in the advertising and rendering of the services. The proposed mark is comprised of the following specific elements: a black narrow-brimmed fedora-style hat, black shoes, a white dress shirt, a black necktie, a yellow suit with vertical black stripes, and a black briefcase featuring the white stylized lettering “WALSH COLLEGE” on two lines and “LIVE. BREATHE. BUSINESS.” on a single line below the first two lines. The dotted outline of a person is not part of the mark, but is merely intended to show the position of the costume. The drawing is a two-dimensional representation of the mark.
Owner: Walsh College of Accountancy and Business Administration