Three guesses as to who just filed a federal trademark infringement action in Minnesota — one that also alleges “dilution” of a “famous” mark beginning with the word LIBERTY.
Liberty Mutual? No, sorry, wrong answer.
Liberty University? Uh, no, but nice try.
Liberty Travel? Nope. O.K., four guesses.
Well, we just finished tax season, Liberty Tax? No, and this is getting a little ridiculous.
How about an owner of one of the many scores of live trademark applications or registrations at the U.S. Trademark Office for the word LIBERTY? Well, not exactly, and that’s five guesses.
Correct Answer: Liberty Building Systems. Who?
Liberty Building Systems, not to be confused with the defendant Liberty Steel Buildings, of course.
Are you implying that Liberty Building Systems is not a federally-registered mark?
The federal trademark application for LIBERTY BUILDING SYSTEMS was abandoned several months ago, here, after being finally refused registration based on a perceived likelihood of confusion with a prior LIBERTY federally-registered mark owned by yet another Liberty, namely, Liberty Homes.
One last question, how does the plaintiff credibly claim “dilution” of a “famous” mark in LIBERTY BUILDING SYSTEMS, recognizing that “niche” fame is insufficient under federal trademark dilution law, knowing all the above, and having the following disclaimer on its own website?
“Liberty Building Systems™ is a division of BlueScope Buildings North America, Inc.
Neither Liberty Building Systems nor BlueScope Buildings North America, Inc. is affiliated with Liberty Homes, Inc.”
I have no idea, and I’m tired of all the guesswork.
For your reading pleasure, you may download the Complaint with the incredible dilution claim here.