Sunday, September 06, 2009

Malaysian McDonald's-McCurry case mimics US trademark dilution issue

Although this posting does not directly involve US trademark law (and dilution) this case in Malaysia certain fits the spirit of dilution concerns in the US, so I posted it here rather than on the International blog.

A restaurant called McCurry, which produces well known Malaysian fast food, has been in litigation with McDonald’s, in a case that is called copyright infringement but that sounds more like the US concept of trademark dilution. To a well-educated western consumer, the case sounds silly. No one would be confused by the Irish prefix “Mc” in multiple corporate names. And no one would confuse the restaurants, even if McDonald’s offers similar Asian fare (probably as a low-fat, healthful offering).

Jadeep Kumar has a story (Malaysian) “Court to take up McDonalds-McCurry issue on Monday” in Singapore’s paper “Top News.”

1 comment:

Richard Baron said...

The recent McDonald's v. McCurry ruling is not surprising. Just by the three main DuPont factors alone, appearance, sound and meaning, these two marks are arguably not confusingly similar. Add to that the difference in menus, and the difference in trade dress, and you have a pretty strong case for McCurry, which the panel seemingly accepted. The letters "Mc" cannot be totally, exclusively owned by one entity worldwide. And it's not as if people are going to mix up McCurry with McDonalds. Now, if McCurry used the golden arches, had a clown and similar characters associated with the restaurant, that would be problematic. Those elements were not present in this case. On our site,,we help with these trademark issues and any trademark questions.