Could you identify the candy in your Halloween trick or treat bag just by its shape? Many of us could identify a lot of them based on a blind taste test. Or from their logos or wrappers.
But did you know that the configuration or shape of products can be registered ‘non-traditional’ trademarks? And in fact, many candy configurations are registered. Here are some examples. Consider it a Halloween treat for my readers!
Click candy name for link to USPTO registration data:
Which is your favorite candy configuration?
(c) 2012 Erik M. Pelton & Associates, PLLC
Hershey just got a trademark registration for their 12 segment chocolate bar. Now all you have to do is find a house giving away full-size candy bars!
Is it legal to use familiar shapes of candy in a video game as central characters? While also not making reference to the name(i.e. tootsie roll, dum dum, etc).
That is a very interesting question! While I can’t give specific legal advice in this space, I can say: If the shapes are protected (see above, but that list is not comprehensive, just some examples) or the shapes make it clear to viewers what candy is being referenced, use of them without permission in video game could very well cause legal problems.