1. Free Legal Help, Legal Forms and Lawyers. TheLaw.com has been providing free legal assistance online since 1995. Our most popular destinations for legal help are below. It only takes a minute to join our legal community!

    Dismiss Notice

Tshirt Trademark - Common Words

Discussion in 'Copyright, Trademark, Patent Law' started by dsanchez, Jun 22, 2010.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. dsanchez

    dsanchez Law Topic Starter New Member

    Messages:
    1
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    HI!

    Can I trademark tshirts with commonly used words using the I (heart) design.

    Examples:

    I love law

    I love school

    I love college
     
  2. Michael Wechsler

    Michael Wechsler Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    9,172
    Likes Received:
    622
    Trophy Points:
    113

    While I never provide specific answers without a full and proper legal consultation and a full review.

    This is a great question.

    Off the top of my head, the answer I think is "yes" but you would not be trademarking the heart - you'd be trademarking the look of the phrase with your artistically rendered version. I didn't read extensively on this issue but the articles I'm reading point to some famous "I Heart NY" or "I ♥ NY" trademark infringement lawsuit - a mark owned by the state of New York.

    This article in Business Week discusses something along the lines of differences of appearance concerning a lawsuit for an "I ♥ NC" lawsuit and also references the "I ♥ Yoga" lawsuit where New York State shut down a Bikram Yoga based effort that used the instantly recognizable heart.

    There is more about it in Wikipedia as well, even though it's not always the most reliable source. :)

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/I_Love_New_York

    So my gut feeling here is that if you design a shirt that doesn't make people instantly think of the famous black typewriter text, big red heart "I heart NY" t-shirt and that there might be an association, you might be fine with a nice blue Arial font and tye dye colored heart. :)
     
  3. Michael Wechsler

    Michael Wechsler Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    9,172
    Likes Received:
    622
    Trophy Points:
    113

Share This Page

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.