In my previous post I discussed three major reasons as to why descriptive words are bad trademarks. They generally will be objected to by the Registry, or they may be allowed with disclaimers and even if they are registered, they may not let you stop someone else from using a similar mark. A common way brand owners try and overcome this is by misspelling DISKRIPTIVE words to try and get them registered as trademarks.
Lawyers in general are not the most loved people on the planet. There is always a sense of caution when we’re dealt with. It’s also probably why the legal profession has two patron saints St. Ives and St. Thomas Moore (must be twice as difficult for us to get into heaven). Anyway leaving God and the Saints out of it, in any Company (more so in an FMCG one) the In-House legal team is generally disliked to a great extent by the Marketing team and are at loggerheads with each other on a fairly regular basis. Ruling out personal conflicts, the main cause of trouble, is the fact, that marketing teams like catchy product names, which leave very little doubt as to what the product is – Glass for a for a pair of glasses, Watch Kart for an online store that sells watches; which is exactly what the law does not permit. While the legal team, may seem like permanent killjoys, members of marketing teams, may consider their choice of brands more carefully, if they knew the basics of trademark law and three very important reasons not to choose descriptive or generic trademarks.
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