A generic trademark is the name of a product/service/brand name which is the actual name for the product/service/brand name. Examples include: APPLE for apples, or LAW FIRM for a law firm. A generic term that could even obtain secondary meaning will not help that term become eligible for trademark protection. The rationale behind this prohibition is that to allow a single business, entrepreneur or inventor, the exclusive right to the generic term would give them a monopoly and an unfair competitive advantage over other businesses.
Starbucks, the massive Seattle based coffee company worth about $16.447 billion in 2014, sent the owner of a small town brewery outside of St. Louis, Missouri, a cease and desist letter to prevent them from infringing a Starbucks trademark. The trademark in question, FRAPPUCCINO.
In March 2014, the makers of Alamo Beer filed a lawsuit for trademark infringement in the Western District of Texas. Alamo Beer Company alleged that a competitor was using a confusingly similar trade dress (likelihood of confusion), including a similar design depicting a silhouette of the Alamo. In this case, the State of Texas, owner of […]