Are there any issues to consider when drawing up a list of goods that a trade mark is intended to cover? Surely cosmetics are cosmetics! Food supplements are food supplements! And medicines are just medicines! If a trade mark is genuinely used for these products, could it still be subject to revocation on the grounds of non-use in relation to a different classification of goods?… For example, if the use of a mark for food supplements is in fact a use for pharmaceuticals? Ensure you consider carefully the list of goods covered by your trade mark!
There may be a number reasons for mentioning a third party’s trade mark in your own advertising. But be careful that such advertising cannot be mistaken for that of the trade mark owner. It is also important not to mislead people about the nature of your business relationship with the trade mark owner. It is helpful to know how damages are quantified in such cases.
Climate/environmental neutrality are advertising buzzwords used to express the environmental credentials of a company. They can be found in advertisements as well as on the products themselves. Whether and when such claims are exaggerated and may mislead consumers is currently being clarified by the courts. A status update is therefore in order.
Uniqueness and memorability are the benchmark for environmental slogans. It is not easy to achieve this, but when the environmental slogan works, it communicates in a way that is hard to beat. And if it can do so exclusively, it becomes part of that brand. Stadtwerke Berlin [Municipal Utilities Berlin] believed it was home and dry with its slogan. And rightly so?
There are 2,054 folk festivals in the world called OKTOBERFEST. The oldest, largest and most famous is, of course, the Oktoberfest in Munich. So it is understandable that the city wanted to trade-mark the name of its own festival within the European Union. However, many other organisers have seen this as a threat to the identical names of their own festivals, leading them to fight the registration of the trade mark for Munich. Have they been successful?
Developing a protectable lifestyle brand is not easy. On the one hand, it should convey a clear message that benefits the company. On the other hand, it should be able to be protected as a trade mark. In practice, it is a balancing act! The case below provides some guidance.
A cultural institution may try to position its unique structure as a cultural brand within the framework of cultural marketing. Strong cultural brands attract a lot of attention and engender particularly positive images. Customers, business partners and sponsors can form a quick connection with such brands and images. Is it possible to harness the power of cultural brands for the benefit of a variety of businesses?
It is not unusual for a company to develop a trademark that contains references to its product or service. However, in order to be protected, trademarks must not contain an inherently intelligible description of the essential characteristics of those goods or services. So what might these characteristics comprise?
Food should ideally be natural, organic and healthy, and the word ‘green’ is often appropriate when referring to such qualities. But can a trademark for healthy food that contains the word ‘green’ be registered?
Allusive marks are popular. They already contain references to the relevant products and their characteristics. Brand developers therefore like to try to ‘make up’ such marks from descriptive terms. But can this lead to problems? Other companies could always build their brands from the same basic words.