Slide13-D Trademarks:
New Commercial Dimensions

Slide06

          3-D or shape trademarks are one of a wide variety of non-conventional trademarks, also known as a nontraditional trademarks. These may be considered as any new type of trademark which does not belong to a pre-existing, conventional category of trademark, and which is often difficult to register, but which may nevertheless fulfill the essential trademark function of uniquely identifying the commercial origin of products or services.

          The term is broadly inclusive as it encompasses marks which do not fall into the conventional set of marks (e.g. those consisting of letters, numerals, words, logos, pictures, symbols, or combinations of one or more of these elements), and therefore includes marks based on appearance, shape, sound, smell, taste and texture. These may also include single color trademarks, motion trademarks, hologram trademarks, and sound trademarks (also known as aural trademarks).

          Certain types of non-conventional trademarks have become more widely accepted in recent times as a result of legislative changes expanding the definition of “trademark”. Such developments are the result of international treaties dealing with intellectual property, such as the Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights, which sets down a standardized, inclusive legal definition.

          The following YouTube.com video of USPTO Senior Trademark Attorney Craig Morris is highly educational on the topic of non-traditional trademarks, including 3-D trademarks:

One example of a shape trademark recognized in Europe is the protection granted to Toblerone, a company which manufactures chocolate bars with a distinctive triangular shape. And, in November 2016, the EU General Court ruled in favor of continuing trademark protection for the 3D shape of a Rubik’s Cube. The shape is iconic, but even iconic 3D shapes can run into the problem of functionality; utilitarian aspects of a product shape typically cannot be the subject of trademark protection.

          But, trademarks and patents can be intertwined in their scope and protection as seen by the following list of U.S. patents disclosing and claiming trademark-related subject matter:

          Numerous trademarks applications seeking register shapes and non-traditional elements have been filed with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office, the pace of these filings is quickening. You can search for these and other trademarks by clicking this link for the USPTO TESS webpage. Here are some examples of recent filings, and their respective application serial numbers:

  • 87264093–3D
  • 87300830–A E
  • 87015666–AIRFARECASH
  • 87295629–ASCENT VILLAGE
  • 87284223–BBS BUSINESS BLUEPRINT FOR SUCCESS PSYCHOGRAPHICS MANAGEMENT MODEL GOALS POSITION IDENTITY MARKETS LEADERSHIP PLANS PRICES FOCUS IDEAS DELIVERY RESEARCH FINANCIALS SYSTEMS COMPETITION METRICS NEXUS STRATEGIES ACCOUNTABILITY METRICS
  • 87180319–BELLY UP EST. 1974
  • 87197795–BIOMODEX
  • 87163924–CAPCELL
  • 87198159–CASA NOBLE
  • 87074483–CERTIFIED PROFESSIONAL INVESTIGATOR FOUNDED 1947 INC CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION LICENSED INVESTIGATORS JUSTICE CALI TRUTH
  • 87297173–CHARLEYS CHICKEN FINGERS · CHEESESTEAKS
  • 87297074–EXCELLENCE IN THE WORKPLACE ORGANIZATION OPERATIONS SALES MANAGEMENT TRAINING CUSTOMER SERVICE
  • 87177977–GORP ENERGY BAR ADVENTURE ON!
  • 87299984–GPA GLOBAL INNOVATING SOLUTIONS
  • 87270551–H
  • 87041502–H-L
  • 87295748–HEIRLOOM VILLAGE
  • 87296082–HERITAGE VILLAGE
  • 87044523–HOVERBOARDX
  • 87292594–HS HOTSTYLIST
  • 87196927–HUNTINGTON AMBULATORY SURGERY CENTER HH
  • 87171976–HYGO MAX
  • 87297378–I INVESTMENT AND INSURANCE SERVICES LOCATED AT NYCB
  • 87292139–JI
  • 87298966–K G A
  • 87292075–LADYBUGS
  • 87296070–LEGENDS VILLAGE
  • 87230305–LILLY
  • 87303344–LS LUMENSIGHT
  • 87198734–LUCHA DOR
  • 87297769–M
  • 87290662–MATRIX PHYSICAL THERAPY & WELLNESS
  • 87129927–MN
  • 87159774–NEXUS PROPERTY MANAGEMENT
  • 87299796–PENINSULASTEEL
  • 87299768–PENINSULASTEEL
  • 87299761–PENINSULASTEEL
  • 87296055–PINNACLE VILLAGE
  • 87296102–PROMONTORY VILLAGE
  • 87296112–PROSPECT VILLAGE
  • 87296023–PROVIDENCE VILLAGE
  • 87043512–RED MOUNTAIN LABORATORIES
  • 87299703–SLOTS TOWN
  • 87122454–T H
  • 87067504–TANGO

          For more reading on non-traditional trademarks and intellectual property, see the following articles, papers, and blogs: