Doing social media wrong

And not just wrong, but outright stupidly:

Ask the NFL how well it managed to enforce #SuperBowl. Or, for that matter, #SuperbOwl.

4 comments

  1. McGehee »

    24 June 2018 · 8:05 am

    Oh glorious and blessed St. Carp.

  2. Dan T. »

    24 June 2018 · 8:30 am

    Some people don’t understand how trademark law works. To gain trademark rights (with or without a registration), you need to be using the name in commerce. To infringe on a trademark, the other person has to be using it in commerce. Simply using it in discussion doesn’t count; I can talk about McDonald’s and Coca-Cola all I want, using their trademarked names, as long as I’m not using them to falsely associate my own competing products with them.

  3. Dan T. »

    24 June 2018 · 8:35 am

    Plus, there is a defense to trademark infringement if the alleged infringer was actually using the name before it was trademarked; courts have ruled that local businesses who happened to have a name that somebody else later trademarked nationally could keep using their names, and might even have the right to prevent the national company from using it in their region. That would apply, in the unlikely event that the person here successfully trademarks the hashtag, to the person he’s trying to target who was in fact using the hashtag first.

    All of this is not to say that corporations with lots of money and high-priced lawyers haven’t stretched and abused trademark law, and compelled people who weren’t infringing by any reasonable standard to give in rather than pay huge legal fees to defend against them, but it’s unlikely the person in this case has the degree of resources somebody like the NFL has when insisting on a trademark over “Super Bowl”. (For that matter, last I heard, DC and Marvel Comics were still claiming trademark rights over the word “superhero”.)

  4. CGHill »

    24 June 2018 · 11:09 am

    Bavaria used to own the copyright (since expired) on Adolf Hitler’s Mein Kampf. There are times on Twitter I wish they owned trademark rights to “Nazi”; it would cut down my reading time substantially. (Twitter’s Mute function is not 100-percent reliable.)

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