Register your trade mark… and then keep an eye on it!
News earlier this year (reported worldwide!) of the lawyers’ letter received by the Star Inn at Vogue unsurprisingly caught our eye. After landlords Mark and Rachel Graham incorporated their established business as a limited company, Condé Nast, publishers of Vogue magazine, wrote to say that use of the word “Vogue” as part of the company name “might cause problems”.
It’s not the first time a letter defending a trade mark has hit the news for being a little heavy-handed. In this case at least the publishers have apologised and admitted that “further research” should have been done before firing off the letter. The swift correction seems to have done the trick, and the mistake apparently hasn’t caused any serious hard feelings.
The publishers of Vogue very sensibly have trade mark registrations protecting their valuable brand. Your business may well have done the same. But do you have a watching service to monitor for potential conflicting marks or business names which come into use? Ongoing watching for conflicting trade mark registrations, company name registrations, and other uses of your brand is a vital part of protecting the value and uniqueness in your name. Nowadays, technology makes effective automatic watching affordable for businesses of all sizes – and this really is something that everyone should have in place. As the Vogue story demonstrates though, you do need the human touch as well – a real person to check the notices from the computer-based watch and to decide what (if anything!) needs to be done with them.
At Albright IP we can provide both of these essentials – computer-based watching, and a team of attorneys who promise to check carefully before sending letters. So if you want to discuss protection of your brand, please get in touch.