Trademark news

HART – the importance of trademark research

Last summer, Museum Hermitage Amsterdam announced its name change. The museum no longer wanted to be associated with Russia. The new name HART however, did not go down well with the Belgian art magazine HART. In 2006, the company had established the logo for printing, advertising, cultural activities and magazine publishing. » trademark-registration

Sound mark - children's song

When people think of brands, they often only think of word marks and logos. However, there are many types of trademarks, such as multimedia marks, position marks and, of course, sound marks (think, for example, of the lion's cry from film company Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer). However, not every sound can be claimed as a trademark.  » trademark-registration

Refusal Put Putin In

Trademark law operates on the first-come, first-served principle. Some individuals (and companies) attempt to register trademarks linked to tragic events in order to try and make a financial gain from extremely sad events (e.g.: JE SUIS CHARLIE).The war in Ukraine seems to evoke similar actions. Until now, such marks have often been refused because of a lack in distinctiveness. The signs are so widely known that no one recognizes an indication of origin in them. » trademark-registration

TOBLERONE and the Matterhorn

It is common knowledge that state symbols should not be used in trademarks. The reason being that consumers may deem the products/services approved by the government. In Switzerland, a law was passed in 2017 that goes a bit further. » trademark-registration

Republic of Mauritius joins WIPO

Through the International Registration route, companies can easily claim trademark rights in many countries. The big advantages are the cost (relatively cheap) and the central management of trademarks, which makes the managing of these rights more efficient cheaper. Many countries have joined in recent years, including Chile, Jamaica, Cape Verde, Belize and most recently Mauritius. That brings the number of countries where protection can be claimed through WIPO to 130 countries. (Source image: Abcor) » 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?