Thursday, May 10, 2018

If you drive around to nearby states, you notice a lot of potential trademark disputes waiting to happen

No “stupid patent” today, or even stupid trademark.

But I’ll mention a few brands I’ve seen “on the road”.

One is a boutique called “Tuesday Morning” in Centerville VA.  I guess a day of the week could make an attractive brand, but common words could get more scrutiny. (Of course, I’ve long eaten at “Friday’s”, at Tyson’s (near the AMC), or near Bailey’s Crossroads (just barely in Alexandria.)  And there the well known chain “Ruby Tuesday” which is also nearby. Often well-known words do get grabbed by franchise owners (but Trump is also franchised – it would be bad if you couldn’t use your own name for a domain because a company had franchised it).  

The (new?) brand seems to recognize Monday holidays. 

A couple startups got into a trademark dispute with the Washington Nationals baseball team in MLB. Post story.

But doesn’t the Walgreens logo match that of the Nats?  (The curl at the tip is slightly different.) They are in different line of business.  But trade dress is probably more sensitive than wordmark alone. (The Nats' W is usually white on red background; Walgreen's the opposite.) 
Driving Rt 9 into Berkeley Springs W Va I noticed a “Black Dog” shop.  Remember July 28, 2012 I talked about the “Lost Dog” controversy. 

Update: Sunday, May 27, 2018

I needed to go to a Best Buy in Dallas to get an accessory that I had forgotten to pack. On US 75 (north of Park Lane) there is one of the largest Best Buy's in the US.  Next to it -- guess what -- a big sign pointing to "Tuesday Morning," 

I had tried to look in a CVS earlier -- and I noted that a CVS store around Beltline had exactly the same floor plan as a large store in Arlington VA.  Does branding mean the same conveniences in the same place? 

It's getting to the point that anyone who wants to own a business open to the public in the usual sense of conducting retail transactions has to pay attention to the world of franchises.