Trademark news

Issues of (semi) descriptive trademarks

From a marketing point of view, it is tempting to use semi-descriptive trademarks. With such a trademark, it is immediately clear to consumers what the attributes of a product or a service are. The disadvantage, however, is that descriptive terms cannot be claimed as trademarks and therefore, as a company, you cannot obtain monopolies on the use of such terms. But how do we know when a term is descriptive? What is considered the limit of descriptiveness? » trademark-registration

State symbol use in logo’s

Companies sometimes use elements in their logo that refer to the country where the company is based. This can lead to problems when it comes to the use of symbols as flags, state emblems and certification marks. » trademark-registration

NFT: trademark registrations in the metaverse

Ever since Mark Zuckerberg announced his plans to turn his social media platforms into a metaverse business, NFTs and metaverse have been in the spotlight. The metaverse is the new internet, in which all 3D spaces are linked together. Participants in the metaverse use an avatar, a virtual character, with which someone communicates, meets, flirts, et cetera with others. NFTs (non-fungible tokens) are unique, non-exchangeable digital items. NFTs were initially introduced for digital forms of art. » trademark-registration

When can a sound be a trademark?

With the implementation of revised trademark treaty, the requirement that a trademark must be able to be represented graphically was abandoned. This has opened the door to new sorts of trademarks. Think of movie clips, animated images, position marks and of course sound marks. Before that, a melody could only be claimed as a mark, if the melody could be represented in a music-staff. Now that this new legislation is in place, a soundmark may also be submitted as an MP3 file. However, not every application is accepted, as Ardagh learned. » trademark-registration

Coin pocket Diesel valid positionmark

Diesel has a design for its jeans with a small pocket on top of the right front pocket, the so-called coin pocket. Diesel has applied a small diagonal stripe to this small pocket. Just as Levi's sees its red vertical tab as a trademark, Diesel uses this slanted strip as a vital part of its branding too. In order to protect the rights, it applies for a position mark. » trademark-registration
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IP quiz Trademarks

Puma is one of the bigger sports and lifestyle brands in the world. The core-business is the design, development and sale of (sports) shoes, (sports) clothing and accessories. In 1960, Puma registered an international trademark for a device designed in 1958: the formstrip. Since then, Puma has registered approximately 90 formstrip trademarks with validity in the Benelux or the European Union. Puma claims that this is a serial mark. Monshoe is a wholesaler of women's shoes and related products. The company designs and develops Monshoe shoes which it largely markets itself. Monshoe sells its women's shoes under the brands Shoecolate and Pearlz. The shoe Shoecolate is offered in various colour combinations. Puma claims that Monshoe infringes its well-known formstrip trademark. Monshoe contradicts this and states that the average consumer will not perceive the device of Monshoe on the sneakers as a trademark. And if the public will recognize a trademark in the decoration, it will not make the connection to Puma. According to Monshoe, the formstrip logo is not a well-known trademark within the meaning of the BVIE and the UMVo. There is no likelihood of confusion because the sign does not or hardly evoke any association with Puma among the public. In light of the above, who is right? Does this constitute decorative use or linking to a well-known trademark?