Am I still protected? Or do I need to file a trademark application for each variation of my own trademark?
In order to maintain a trademark registration, you must use the trademark exactly as it is registered. Examining Attorneys will be picky about this. Failing to use the trademark as registered for all listed goods and services continuously will result in loss of the registration for the goods or services for which the trademark is not used in the form in which it is registered. You would still have common law rights to whatever you are actually using, but the scope of those rights would have to be proven in order to prove infringement. I recommend registering any and all variations you use,and using them consistently.
With respect to infringement, the standard for trademark infringement is likelihood of confusion. Small variations between a registered or common law trademark and another trademark will not avoid a finding of infringement.See question
Scenario 1: "Garden State Landscaping" performs landscaping and gardening services in and around the Newark area. If Garden State Landscaping works exclusively within the boundaries of the State of New Jersey and never accepts jobs in any other ju...
As Attorney Tencza Points out, there is a long line of cases that hold that almost any commerce somehow affects interstate commerce, and is thus subject to regulation by Congress. Furthermore, state registration is inferior to even a later-filed federal registration for a confusingly similar trademark (although the holder of an earlier state registration would also have common law rights predating the federal registration). For the best protection, federal registration is the way to go.
Regarding the geographic descriptiveness, such marks cannot function as trademarks until they develop "acquired distinctiveness" or "secondary meaning," which means that they have become primarily associated in the minds of consumers with specific sources of goods or services. For many marks, a presumption of secondary meaning can be established by five years of continuous, substantially exclusive use. For highly descriptive marks, more evidence of secondary meaning in the form of advertising expenses, sales revenue, consumer surveys, etc. may be necessary. Thus, an application for federal registration will likely result in registration on the Supplemental Register (assuming that actual use of the mark begins during the application process) until secondary meaning is established, at which time another application for registration on the Principal Register can be filed. Registration on the Supplemental Register does not provide any presumption of an exclusive right to use the mark throughout the US, and serves primarily as a placeholder in the US Patent and Trademark Office, preventing registration of a later filed application for a confusingly similar mark.See question
My organization has name and a logo, and we needed a slogan to top everything off. We came up with a short, yet profound slogan that we all agreed was the one we just had to use. So we went to go search to see if another company, or organization w...
Likelihood of confusion is determined based on an analysis of eight factors, the most important of which are the similarity of the marks and the relatedness of the goods or services. Although it is generally not trademark infringement to use a similar mark for unrelated goods or services, this can result in liability for dilution in the case of a famous mark.
Additionally, there may be numerous registered and unregistered marks which you are not aware of yet, but which could raise the issue of likelihood of confusion. Therefore, a full clearance search performed by an attorney is always a good idea before adopting a trademark.See question
Our team is giving away 2 free tickets to an NFL football game in a raffle. The contest is with our past clients. If our past clients bring us a referral name of someone they know who is possibly interested in using our services, their name gets e...
You can use a trademark owned by another only to the extent necessary to truthfully describe what you are providing, and not to an extent that could indicate affiliation with or endorsement by the NFL. If you are providing genuine tickets to the raffle, you can truthfully describe them as tickets to a specific game. Use of the NFL logo could arguably be more than what is required to describe the prize in your raffle, so I would avoid doing so in order to keep your risks at a minimum.See question
I received a notice that a request to extend the time to oppose my trademark has been granted by the trademark trials an appeals board. I have looked into the opposer and found that they have filed opposition against this particular mark multiple ...
I will echo the others in advising you to seek counsel quickly.
An extension of time means that an opposition is being considered, but not necessarily that it will be filed. However, given the history of this plaintiff, it may be filed. You should at least consult with an attorney to discuss the likely issues of contention and likelihood of success. If an opposition is filed, it will be expensive to defend unless a quick settlement can be reached.See question
I am an artist and my stage name is also the name of a clothing company, as I am planning the debut project release I am eager to have my name protected and rights to brand etc.
In general, it is not trademark infringement to use a trademark used by another for goods or services that are sufficiently unrelated that no purchasers would be likely to confuse the trademarks. However, if the clothing company's trademark is famous, then liability for trademark dilution could result.
Additionally, there could be others using similar marks for other goods or services. Thus, the first step is a private evaluation by a trademark attorney to ensure that there is no likelihood of confusion or dilution with respect to the clothing company. Next, a full trademark clearance search should be performed, and an opinion issued by an attorney, regarding the existence or lack thereof of any other potentially confusingly similar marks.
If the clearance search results are favorable, then an application for federal registration of your trademark should be filed. Federal registration provides a presumption of the right to use the mark throughout the entire country, but is inferior to any pre-existing common law rights that arose through actual use in specific geographic territories. Federal registration also puts trademark examining attorneys as well as others on notice of your trademark rights, ensuring that no one will be able to register anything confusingly similar to your trademark.See question
What should I do about the patent situation of signing over to them?
As a general rule, inventions are owned by the inventor(s) unless otherwise assigned. However, as noted by other answers, employment agreements - particularly for engineers, scientists, and others for whom invention is part of their job - often require assigning work-related (or perhaps all) inventions to the employer. The specific agreements would need to be reviewed. The circumstances under which the invention was made would have to be reviewed to determine whether they fall within any assignment requirement within the agreement.
Even if the employer does not have a right to the invention based on any employment agreement, if the invention was created during work hours and/or using work facilities or equipment, under circumstances that would lead the employer to believe that the invention is work-related, the employer would have a "shop right" to the invention, which is essentially a royalty-free, nonexclusive license to practice the invention.See question
The intent is to only use a handful of the images in a blog post book review, not to scan the entire book and post it online. I have how to draw instruction books and old design textbooks that may not have had second printings and I'm hoping to j...
Although this may be okay, I suggest a private consultation with a copyright attorney explaiining exactly what you intend to do.
Fair use is an exception to copyright infringement that is defined in 17 U.S.C. sec. 107, reproduced below.
Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 106 and 106A, the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies or phonorecords or by any other means specified by that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright. In determining whether the use made of a work in any particular case is a fair use the factors to be considered shall include—
(1) the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;
(2) the nature of the copyrighted work;
(3) the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and
(4) the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.
The fact that a work is unpublished shall not itself bar a finding of fair use if such finding is made upon consideration of all the above factors.
The factors are not weighed equally, but are applied as appropriate on a case by case basis. For example, copying small amounts can still be copyright infringement if the portions copied are particularly substantial to the work as a whole.
If your purpose is to comment on the book, and you reproduce only the amount necessary to enable such comment, without impacting the market for the book, then you are likely to be okay. However, I would encourage a private review of exactly what you intend to post prior to posting it.See question
HI i am starting a clothing line and im tryna find out if i need to simply copyright my name or trademark it... Little Rock, AR | 17 minutes ago Basically i have a clothing line im looking to start an as of now im just tryna protect the name as...
Please keep in mind that the standard for trademark infringement is likelihood of confusion. Thus, lack of registration for the identical mark does not mean that confusingly similar registrations do not exist. Additionally, trademark rights arise through actual use of a mark in connection with goods or services. Registration provides a presumption of the right to use the mark throughout the entire country, but is inferior to pre-existing "common law" rights through actual use in a given geographic area.
If the search results are favorable, then an early application for federal registration is advisable.See question
I created a VERY popular name for a parodied fictional character's alter-ego and I want to own it outright. I use it on the official website, ebooks and t-shirts, but when I went down the trademark road, I found you have to register it for each su...
Initially, I would have your work reviewed by an intellectual property attorney to ensure that there are no trademark or copyright infringement issues between the original fictional character and your parodied character. A clearance search should also be performed in order to ensure that the name is no confusingly similar to any other names used for related goods, or to any famous marks.
Once those steps are taken, it is best to register the trademark in all classes of goods for which you can reasonably begin use within about 3 to 3 1/2 years. Registration provides a presumption of the right to use the trademark throughout the entire country (subject to any pre-existing "common law" rights based on actual use in the geographic regions where the prior use occurred). Registration also ensures that any Examining Attorney examining an application for a confusingly similar mark will find your registration, preventing anyone else from registering a mark that could impact your rights.See question