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(Slate)   "Students with diabetes" has been trademarked by the University of South Guess Where   (slate.com) divider line 42
    More: Florida, diabetes, West Virginia University, University of Colorado, Chronicle of Higher Education  
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4210 clicks; posted to Main » on 11 Mar 2014 at 3:07 PM (26 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



42 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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2014-03-11 03:00:45 PM
img2.wikia.nocookie.net

"I'm Scott Malkinson. I've got a lisp and I've got diabetes."
 
2014-03-11 03:09:42 PM
Go Beetus Bulls!

/c/o 2003.
 
2014-03-11 03:09:58 PM
This crap shouldn't be legal, trademarking common phrases?
 
2014-03-11 03:15:51 PM

strangeluck: This crap shouldn't be legal, trademarking common phrases?


Excuse me, but I own the trademark on "This crap shouldn't be legal, trademarking common phrases?"™

There will be a knock on the door shortly.
 
2014-03-11 03:18:32 PM
I liked "touched by a nurse"
 
2014-03-11 03:21:42 PM
West Virginia University sued a company selling blue-and-gold shirts (they said "Let's Go Drink Some Beers!"-which WVU claimed was too close to their trademarked "Let's Go Mountaineers!").

*snort*
 
2014-03-11 03:25:02 PM
The article also mentions 1) the University of South Carolina, 2) Eastern University, 3) Marquette University, 4) the University of Illinois, 5) Washington University in St. Louis, 6) Cornell College, the University of Colorado, 7) the University of Texas, 8) the University of Kansas Hospital, 9) the University of Virginia, 10) the University of Alabama, 11) East Carolina University, 12) West Virginia University but Smitty still went for the cheap green light by using the Florida tag?

Way to go Fark.
 
2014-03-11 03:30:11 PM
The university of the peninsular state what's south of Georgia?

/ squidbillies FTW
 
2014-03-11 03:34:21 PM

StrikitRich: The article also mentions 1) the University of South Carolina, 2) Eastern University, 3) Marquette University, 4) the University of Illinois, 5) Washington University in St. Louis, 6) Cornell College, the University of Colorado, 7) the University of Texas, 8) the University of Kansas Hospital, 9) the University of Virginia, 10) the University of Alabama, 11) East Carolina University, 12) West Virginia University but Smitty still went for the cheap green light by using the Florida tag?

Way to go Fark.


Because only Florida had "students with diabetes" trademarked. I get why almost all the other phrases would be uses, but seriously WTF Florida
 
2014-03-11 03:34:45 PM
Call Liberty.
 
2014-03-11 03:36:34 PM
I am at the University of Florida, right now, so I am getting a real kick, etc.
 
2014-03-11 03:39:18 PM
Sort of a misuse of the Florida tag, whenit is only one place from an article filled with stupidity.

/Would argue "Student Life™" is even stupider that "Students with Diabetes™", as there are more live students than diabetic students, hence the former is even more generic
 
2014-03-11 03:41:16 PM
"Duke Sucks" trademarked yet?
 
2014-03-11 03:42:54 PM

StrikitRich: The article also mentions 1) the University of South Carolina, 2) Eastern University, 3) Marquette University, 4) the University of Illinois, 5) Washington University in St. Louis, 6) Cornell College, the University of Colorado, 7) the University of Texas, 8) the University of Kansas Hospital, 9) the University of Virginia, 10) the University of Alabama, 11) East Carolina University, 12) West Virginia University but Smitty still went for the cheap green light by using the Florida tag?

Way to go Fark.


Don't hate the player, hate the game.

//not subby
//I was going to guess "Mississippi" myself.
 
2014-03-11 03:51:36 PM
South Wales?
 
2014-03-11 03:58:58 PM

Arkanaut: StrikitRich: The article also mentions 1) the University of South Carolina, 2) Eastern University, 3) Marquette University, 4) the University of Illinois, 5) Washington University in St. Louis, 6) Cornell College, the University of Colorado, 7) the University of Texas, 8) the University of Kansas Hospital, 9) the University of Virginia, 10) the University of Alabama, 11) East Carolina University, 12) West Virginia University but Smitty still went for the cheap green light by using the Florida tag?

Way to go Fark.

Don't hate the player, hate the game.

//not subby
//I was going to guess "Mississippi" myself.


Me too.
 
2014-03-11 04:03:52 PM
I still can't fathom a context for which 'students with diabetes' applies. Did Wilford Brilmley go there?
 
2014-03-11 04:04:26 PM
touched by a nurse

Huh huh. huh huh.
 
2014-03-11 04:20:09 PM

AlanSmithee: I still can't fathom a context for which 'students with diabetes' applies. Did Wilford Brilmley go there?


My friend's son had Type 1 and he and another child are both students with diabetes at-

*phone rings*

Oh, shiat.
 
2014-03-11 04:22:43 PM
Students With Diabetes is a non-profit organization that provides support and resources for... students with diabetes. They've got quite a few chapters at various universities, but it started at and is primarily supported by USF. The trademark is along the lines of something like "Doctors Without Borders" and is not some random marketing phrase like "Tomorrow starts here."

http://hscweb3.hsc.usf.edu/studentswithdiabetes/

Not so ridiculous now, eh?
 
2014-03-11 04:23:51 PM
Note the top comment is :

"Touched by a Nurse -  Was also Trade Marked back in '96 by Brazzers1".

/now that is funny....
 
2014-03-11 04:35:14 PM

ragnarok: Students With Diabetes is a non-profit organization that provides support and resources for... students with diabetes. They've got quite a few chapters at various universities, but it started at and is primarily supported by USF. The trademark is along the lines of something like "Doctors Without Borders" and is not some random marketing phrase like "Tomorrow starts here."

http://hscweb3.hsc.usf.edu/studentswithdiabetes/

Not so ridiculous now, eh?


Have a coke.
 
2014-03-11 04:36:55 PM
My guess is if anyone wants to fight this that all of these were used elsewhere first and are thus untrademarkable.  The question is does anyone want to fight it?  In any case this is BS and all of these phrases will be used for a year or two and then dropped as marketing demands something new as a catchphrase.
 
2014-03-11 04:43:38 PM

StrikitRich: The article also mentions 1) the University of South Carolina, 2) Eastern University, 3) Marquette University, 4) the University of Illinois, 5) Washington University in St. Louis, 6) Cornell College, the University of Colorado, 7) the University of Texas, 8) the University of Kansas Hospital, 9) the University of Virginia, 10) the University of Alabama, 11) East Carolina University, 12) West Virginia University but Smitty still went for the cheap green light by using the Florida tag?

Way to go Fark.


We hardly ever get to use the Florida tag so we need to make excuses.
 
2014-03-11 04:49:52 PM

vudukungfu: ragnarok: Students With Diabetes is a non-profit organization that provides support and resources for... students with diabetes. They've got quite a few chapters at various universities, but it started at and is primarily supported by USF. The trademark is along the lines of something like "Doctors Without Borders" and is not some random marketing phrase like "Tomorrow starts here."

http://hscweb3.hsc.usf.edu/studentswithdiabetes/

Not so ridiculous now, eh?

Have a coke.


Omission of offer of included smile noted.
 
2014-03-11 04:53:19 PM
i487.photobucket.com
 
2014-03-11 05:16:09 PM

Vlad_the_Inaner: vudukungfu: ragnarok: Students With Diabetes is a non-profit organization that provides support and resources for... students with diabetes. They've got quite a few chapters at various universities, but it started at and is primarily supported by USF. The trademark is along the lines of something like "Doctors Without Borders" and is not some random marketing phrase like "Tomorrow starts here."

http://hscweb3.hsc.usf.edu/studentswithdiabetes/

Not so ridiculous now, eh?

Have a coke.


My Grandfather loved Coke!

/He died of diabetes.
 
2014-03-11 05:42:05 PM

interstellar_tedium: My guess is if anyone wants to fight this that all of these were used elsewhere first and are thus untrademarkable. The question is does anyone want to fight it? In any case this is BS and all of these phrases will be used for a year or two and then dropped as marketing demands something new as a catchphrase.


You can trademark words and phrases that were used before.  If you couldn't we would never have companies with marks like APPLE or AMERICAN AIRLINES.  All you need to do is show that consumers associate the mark with goods or services provided by your company (or school).

Also to sue someone, they also need to be using the mark in commerce for a product or service confusingly similar with yours.  Thus no one can or will sue you for saying the words "students with diabetes," only for creating a support services group and advertising using that phrase.  Even then, nominative fair use would likely protect you if your advertisement was actually talking about students who happened to have diabetes.
 
2014-03-11 05:48:09 PM

monoski: I liked "touched by a nurse"


s8.postimg.org
 
2014-03-11 06:01:19 PM
A couple of unregulated keggers ought to solve this problem
 
2014-03-11 06:18:55 PM

interstellar_tedium: My guess is if anyone wants to fight this that all of these were used elsewhere first and are thus untrademarkable.


My guess is that you have no idea how trademarks work.
 
2014-03-11 06:19:55 PM

Lord Farkwad: monoski: I liked "touched by a nurse"

[s8.postimg.org image 319x480]


If she's wearing those stilettos rather than clogs, then she's no night nurse.
 
2014-03-11 07:30:27 PM
I thought you couldn't trademark common everyday phrases or words?
 
2014-03-11 08:11:48 PM

ReapTheChaos: I thought you couldn't trademark common everyday phrases or words?


You're fired.
 
2014-03-11 08:32:26 PM

ragnarok: Students With Diabetes is a non-profit organization that provides support and resources for... students with diabetes. They've got quite a few chapters at various universities, but it started at and is primarily supported by USF. The trademark is along the lines of something like "Doctors Without Borders" and is not some random marketing phrase like "Tomorrow starts here."

http://hscweb3.hsc.usf.edu/studentswithdiabetes/

Not so ridiculous now, eh?


No, still absolutely ridiculous.
 
2014-03-11 08:46:08 PM

Theaetetus: interstellar_tedium: My guess is if anyone wants to fight this that all of these were used elsewhere first and are thus untrademarkable.

My guess is that you have no idea how trademarks work.


Guess I don't, I always thought that if you could show that it was used before it was trademarked, especially if it was by you, then you couldn't get it trademarked out from under you.  Guess I have to add trademarks to patents and copyrights as another broken bit of law.
 
2014-03-11 11:30:31 PM

interstellar_tedium: Theaetetus: interstellar_tedium: My guess is if anyone wants to fight this that all of these were used elsewhere first and are thus untrademarkable.

My guess is that you have no idea how trademarks work.

Guess I don't, I always thought that if you could show that it was used before it was trademarked, especially if it was by you, then you couldn't get it trademarked out from under you.  Guess I have to add trademarks to patents and copyrights as another broken bit of law.


"I don't understand X, therefore X, Y, and Z must be broken!!"

Multiple people have pointed out how you're wrong about X - a term need not be unused to be trademarked, e.g. AppleTM, WindowsTM, Driving ExcitementTM, it's what for dinnerTM, the other white meatTM, etc.

But yet, in spite of that, you continue insisting that not only must your interpretation of X be correct and the law about X must be broken,  other areas of law that you don't understand must be broken too!

Do you realize that this is the very definition of insanity - believing that failure, when repeated, will result in success?
 
2014-03-12 08:04:48 AM

Theaetetus: interstellar_tedium: Theaetetus: interstellar_tedium: My guess is if anyone wants to fight this that all of these were used elsewhere first and are thus untrademarkable.

My guess is that you have no idea how trademarks work.

Guess I don't, I always thought that if you could show that it was used before it was trademarked, especially if it was by you, then you couldn't get it trademarked out from under you.  Guess I have to add trademarks to patents and copyrights as another broken bit of law.

"I don't understand X, therefore X, Y, and Z must be broken!!"

Multiple people have pointed out how you're wrong about X - a term need not be unused to be trademarked, e.g. AppleTM, WindowsTM, Driving ExcitementTM, it's what for dinnerTM, the other white meatTM, etc.

But yet, in spite of that, you continue insisting that not only must your interpretation of X be correct and the law about X must be broken,  other areas of law that you don't understand must be broken too!

Do you realize that this is the very definition of insanity - believing that failure, when repeated, will result in success?


Forget about it Theae, it's IP town.
 
2014-03-12 04:51:36 PM

Teiritzamna: Theaetetus: interstellar_tedium: Theaetetus: interstellar_tedium: My guess is if anyone wants to fight this that all of these were used elsewhere first and are thus untrademarkable.

My guess is that you have no idea how trademarks work.

Guess I don't, I always thought that if you could show that it was used before it was trademarked, especially if it was by you, then you couldn't get it trademarked out from under you.  Guess I have to add trademarks to patents and copyrights as another broken bit of law.

"I don't understand X, therefore X, Y, and Z must be broken!!"

Multiple people have pointed out how you're wrong about X - a term need not be unused to be trademarked, e.g. AppleTM, WindowsTM, Driving ExcitementTM, it's what for dinnerTM, the other white meatTM, etc.

But yet, in spite of that, you continue insisting that not only must your interpretation of X be correct and the law about X must be broken,  other areas of law that you don't understand must be broken too!

Do you realize that this is the very definition of insanity - believing that failure, when repeated, will result in success?

Forget about it Theae, it's IP town.


Hey I was thinking more "Frank's Pizza" runs a place for 20 years and suddenly a big company decides to start producing something called "Frank's Pizza" and the little guy gets shafted, but hey lets just defend IP law automatically.

I said it was a guess, and I admitted I was wrong and so what do you want?  I still can think it is silly as it allows someone to move in just because they were the first to think of trademarking it and kill off businesses that have been using the name for years.
 
2014-03-12 05:09:46 PM

interstellar_tedium: Hey I was thinking more "Frank's Pizza" runs a place for 20 years and suddenly a big company decides to start producing something called "Frank's Pizza" and the little guy gets shafted, but hey lets just defend IP law automatically.


Putting aside the issues regarding trademarking a business in the context of a person's name (making it very tricky for a national chain to preclude anyone from using thier name in business), let us assume that the guy who runs the business called Frank's Pizza does not have a federally registered mark, but the big business does.  Even without a federal registration, the guy who runs Frank's pizza would be considered the senior user of that trademark - he has 20 years in the business using that name.  He could not be sued for using it within the geographic area his business was in.  In fact, under state law he might have a claim against the national chain iof it tries to operate in his area.  Now if he tried to, himself make a national chain, things would become a bit more complicated, but the scenario you fear is precluded under the law.

The reason we defend IP law "automatically" is because we generally have to contend with people who know nothing about a system complaining about outcomes from that system that have already been avoided . . . by the very system the people are complaining about.
 
2014-03-12 09:20:41 PM

Teiritzamna: interstellar_tedium: Hey I was thinking more "Frank's Pizza" runs a place for 20 years and suddenly a big company decides to start producing something called "Frank's Pizza" and the little guy gets shafted, but hey lets just defend IP law automatically.

Putting aside the issues regarding trademarking a business in the context of a person's name (making it very tricky for a national chain to preclude anyone from using thier name in business), let us assume that the guy who runs the business called Frank's Pizza does not have a federally registered mark, but the big business does.  Even without a federal registration, the guy who runs Frank's pizza would be considered the senior user of that trademark - he has 20 years in the business using that name.  He could not be sued for using it within the geographic area his business was in.  In fact, under state law he might have a claim against the national chain iof it tries to operate in his area.  Now if he tried to, himself make a national chain, things would become a bit more complicated, but the scenario you fear is precluded under the law.

The reason we defend IP law "automatically" is because we generally have to contend with people who know nothing about a system complaining about outcomes from that system that have already been avoided . . . by the very system the people are complaining about.


I actually have dealt with copyrights as an author (and I mean in print and not just on the web) and found the system biased toward the publishers although for me the process was not bad or negative, and my father had to deal with (and get screwed by) the patent system, so I have a little IP experience.

I guess my thought was if you were using a phrase or mark then someone could not trademark it out from under you which you seem to be saying is the case, so I am wondering how my initial post was really wrong.  I guess because I said anyone could fight it instead of just the original user.  Some of the phrases also seemed as simple as my "Frank's Pizza" example, and again I ask why should they be protected.

I can understand and approve of the idea that you should be able to trademark something that you have originated and have put the effort into making a brand, I just don't want to see trademarks go the way of so much else and be used to hammer the little guy, especially when they were in the marketplace first.
 
2014-03-12 11:01:53 PM

interstellar_tedium: Some of the phrases also seemed as simple as my "Frank's Pizza" example, and again I ask why should they be protected.


Trademark is not copyright - and i mean that not as a facile tautology, but an actual important first principle.  Copyright exists as part of a theoretical quid pro quo wherein the government incentivizes the creation of art by promising a monopoly to the author.  While we can debate how well this actually works, we can agree the system is entirely focused upon protecting the person who created an original work - it is focused upon the author.

Trademark, by contrast, has a totally different purpose.  It is a creation of law that seeks to protect consumers from being ripped off by not knowing who made a product. Almost the entirety of trademark is thus focused not on the rights holder, but the consuming public.  Simple phrases can be trademarks just as well as outrageously original ones, as long  as it can be shown that consumers associate that common phrase with a provider of particular goods.  Of course an uncommon phrase or made up word (EXXON KODAK HEROIN and the like) have an easier time becoming trademarks than common words, because it is easier to show that a consumer, when seeing the word EXXON on a product would likely assume that that term is being used in a trademark sense - as a signifier of source, but if a company actually can show that consumers understand that DISCOUNT SHOE WAREHOUSE or SPEEDY DELIVERY or THE MAIDS is being used as a brand.name, then those are ok as trademarks too.

There are further limits based on this principle.  I noted above that it is in fact very hard to get common names as a trademark. First because they are too common, it is unlikley that people will think of them as brand names.  Frank's pizza could just as well refer to a company's product, or the pizza made by frank at that company i cannot remember.  Second, its unfair to all the franks out there who might want to use their own name in advertising.

Thinking about trademark as a consumer protection provision rather than a reward for creativity explains a lot.  For example, as discussed here how seemingly common phrases can be trademarked.  Just because they are trademarked doesnt mean you cannot use them.  But it does mean that you cannot use them in commerce as such a use could likely confuse consumers and end up with someone getting ripped off.

As an example, TIDE is a common word.  You can talk about the tides, write a movie called Tide, name your kid Tide.  But you couldn't sell your off-market brand of detergent as TIDE.  We all know many people might buy your product thinking it was the major brand TIDE.  And if your product was shiat, the major brand would be the one getting the hate mail and the lost customers.

Similarly the consumer confusion focus vs property rights difference between trademark and copyright/patent explains why rights holders in copyright and patent can be selective in who they attempt to sue - its a property right that they own and thus they can sue or not sue whenever they please.  Trademark holders have to seek to prevent known infringement. If they fail to "police" their mark, they will lose it.  Because if consumers cannot trust that a certain mark is in fact a signifier of source - if anyone can just use the mark without consequence - it stops being a signifier of source and becomes just a generic word again.  You may have head of some like escalator, thermos, zipper or yo-yo.
 
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