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Now that the UK has voted to leave the EU, a messy process will begin to formally separate the country from the union. One issue to be resolved is the affect of the “Brexit” on UK trademark rights for holders of Community Trademarks (aka CTM or OHIM or EU or EUIPO trademarks).

Here are a few articles discussing some of the issues that will need to be resolved:

Bottom line: No one really know exactly what will happen to trademark rigths as negotiations and agreements will be necessary to formalize the exit.

Beware of “Trademark Renewal Service” in Washington, DC

Posted by ipelton on: June 22nd, 2016

Last week, I received a  trademark solicitation regarding a trademark registration renewal. The company calls itself “Trademark Renewal Service” with an address in Washington, DC. See the image of their mailing that I scanned below.

The document could easily be mistaken as coming from the government – the name, the look and feel of the document, the registration number, and the Washington address.

Their “fee” is $250 “to receive all documentation to renew your trademark…” Yet it is not clear what services they provide? Does receiving all the documentation mean that they are handling the renewal filing? Is the fee for a Section 8 renewal, or 8 and 15? Does the $250 include all the fees? Does the $250 include the government USPTO filing fees? The form asks for a “REPLY NO LATER THAN 6/30/16” yet the Section 8 filing is not due until 7/5/2017.

The form also came with an enclosed slip that makes the fee quote even more confusing.

Do “Trademark Renewal Service” provide legal advice about whether a Section 15 is appropriate, and whether the mark is in use or in use for all the goods and services in the registration, or what the options may be if the mark is not currently in use? Are they attorneys and members of the bar?

If this was a legitimate service at a reasonable value, why would they mask who they are, and why would they choose the odd (generic!) name of “Trademark Renewal Service”? Properly protecting trademarks – and trademark registrations – is more than just filling out a form.

Beware of such scams. Read the fine print. Contact your attorney. Report scams to the FTC and USPTO.

For more information, see USPTO’s WARNING: Non-USPTO Solicitations That May Resemble Official USPTO Communications

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Recent Client Trademark Registrations LXXXIX

Posted by ipelton on: June 20th, 2016

Here is another update of recent Erik M. Pelton & Associates client trademark registrations obtained from the public records of the USPTO so readers can see real  examples of brands and marks which are being protected – and the wide range of variety in brand names, logos, products and services. [Click trademark or logo to open USPTO records in a new window]

  • BRONZEDBERRY – Sunless tanning preparations; cosmetics, namely beauty and skincare preparations; Sunless tanning mobile business kits containing sunless tanning preparations, tanning tent, tanning curtain, shirts, and spray equipment for sunless tanning preparations
  • GENUINE COACHING – Coaching, namely, professional coaching and developing customized in-company leadership and executive development programs in the field of sales, marketing, leadership, management, human resources, and customer service; providing motivational and educational speakers in the field of business; training in the field of business; providing classes, seminars, workshops in the field of business leadership, sales, and careers; providing training services for others in the fields of business, leadership, customer service, and sales and distributing educational materials in connection therewith
  • LIVEFREE – Industrial protective eyewear; safety eyewear
  • OCTANE – Industrial protective eyewear; safety eyewear
  • DEVOTED –  Providing a website featuring information in the field of elections, balloting, and voting as it pertains to business and politics
  • Trademark image –  Promoting and marketing the goods and services of others by creating and distributing print, audio, video, internet, and other media; marketing service; Computer coding services in the nature of computer programming; web site hosting services; development and design of websites for others; content management services for websites, namely providing software as a service services featuring software for business and data management, and providing online non-downloadable software for website content management
  • CLOUD LOUNGE – cafe; restaurant; hookah lounge services
  • ROMAN LATIN RANTIN’ – Providing a website featuring nondownloadable educational materials, tutorials, assessments, games, online classes, workbooks, lesson plans, and training aids in the field of Latin grammar and vocabulary
  • LEAN RECRUITING – Business consulting in the field of sales, leadership, staffing, and business management
  • SIDEWALL PIZZA COMPANY – Restaurant and restaurant carry-out services
  • CRIME FIGHTING EYES FOR COPS – Binoculars, Monoculars, Spotting Scopes, Telescopes; Camera Lenses
  • SUITLESS, INC. – Human resources services, namely, personnel selection for businesses; personnel recruitment for business; consulting in the fields of human resources and recruitment; business and business strategy consulting
  • COOKS – Flip Flops
  • GET PACKING – Online retail store services featuring moving, safety, office, janitorial, shipping, and packaging supplies and equipment; inventory management; Business consulting regarding packaging and equipment in the consumer products industry
  • NAMASTAY – Management of hotels and restaurants
  • DAYLOAD – Organizing and hosting parties; Arranging and conducting nightclub parties
  • ARTEMIS PLUS – Nutritional and dietary supplements
  • ZOMBIE ALICE – Dolls, Toy figures

Since my last Trump inspired post in December, there have been many more trademark filings inspired by businessman and presidential candidate Donald Trump. Many are likely to be rejected by the USPTO because they create a false suggestion, or because they fail to function as a mark, or due to a likelihood of confusion with registered Trump trademarks. Click marks below for USPTO records:

Creative puns:

Other recent filings:

  • TRUMPMOJI – Computer application software for mobile phones, namely, software for sharing information on social media; Computer graphics software; Downloadable computer graphics; Downloadable graphics for mobile phones
  • trumpsingles.com – Web site services featuring on-line dating club
  • MAKE JERKY GREAT AGAIN – On-line retail store services featuring meat-based snack foods
  • MAKE MY BODY GREAT AGAIN – Hats; Pants; Shirts; Shorts
  • MAKE AMERICA SANE AGAIN – Hat bands; Hats for infants, babies, toddlers and children; Sweat shirts; T-shirts; Athletic apparel, namely, shirts, pants, jackets, footwear, hats and caps, athletic uniforms; Baseball caps and hats; Children’s and infant’s apparel, namely, jumpers, overall sleepwear, pajamas, rompers and one-piece garments; Gloves for apparel; Hooded sweat shirts; Sports caps and hats; Toboggan hats, pants and caps; Women’s hats and hoods
  • MAKE AMERICA WHOLE AGAIN – Headgear, namely, hats; Wearable garments and clothing, namely, shirts
  • MAKE AMERICA GAY AGAIN logo – Clothing, namely, t-shirts
  • MAKE SEX GREAT AGAIN -online wholesale and retail store services; and other goods
  • TRUMP FENCE COMPANY logo – Installing fencing plus a variety of goods
  • DUMP TRUMP – Polo shirts; Shorts; Sweatpants; Sweatshirts; T-shirts
  • TRUMPOCRAT – Bandanas; Belts; Bottoms; Hats; Headwear; Pajamas; Pants; Scarves; Shirts; Shoes; T-shirts; Ties; Tops; T-shirts

Trademark image

Related: Trump inspired trademark filings: The Donald, Trump Start America, Pump for Trump, In Trump We Trust, and more

Gun configuration trademarks – why?

Posted by ipelton on: June 15th, 2016

Last week while traveling, I snapped the photo below because I was stricken by how brazen and, in my opinion, inappropriate it is. Of course, free speech protects a business’ rights to market and brand their products how they wish. However, the USPTO under Trademark Act Section 2(a) may decline registration and protection for a brand if it is scandalous, immoral, or disparaging, among other reasons (but these refusals are under constitutional attack in the courts in several cases).

Regardless of the potential trademark registrability issues, why would a brand want to associate itself with a weapon used for killing?

Days later the news was filled with the horrors in Orlando. Regardless of one’s position on the 2nd Amendment, I find it odd that a brand would want to immediately turn off a sizable percentage of potential customers.

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The USPTO registered this shape trademark configuration, see here? I’m not sure the government should be determining what is scandalous or immoral as it is virtual impossible to remove subjectivity from the assessment and standards change over time and differ from one person to another. But I have no problem if the public is outraged and refuses to support this business and calls it out for promoting a culture of guns and violence.