Trademark types know all about Park ‘N Fly, whether they travel or not. That’s because it is more than a nearly fifty year old airport parking and travel service brand and federally-registered service mark, it is short-hand for a famous U.S. Supreme Court trademark case from 1985.
In that decision, the Supreme Court recognized the importance and power of federal registration, ruling that after a registration has become incontestable, someone accused of infringing that federally-registered trademark may not defend itself by arguing or otherwise attempting to show that the registered mark is merely descriptive. Such a defense is simply no longer available. So, good luck overcoming this registration refusal, EZ ParkFly, issued two weeks ago by the USPTO.
One of the added benefits of federal registration is that the USPTO helps out on trademark enforcement, and to some extent, does the trademark owner’s bidding in keeping the Principal Register clear of confusingly similar marks, as demonstrated by the EZ ParkFly registration refusal referenced above. But, when the USPTO doesn’t do the trademark owner’s bidding, and no registration refusal is issued, then the trademark owner needs to step up and oppose, so that is exactly what Park ‘N Fly did a few months ago in opposing registration of this mark:
Who do you think wins this one? Are you surprised the USPTO didn’t refuse registration based on the decades old incontestable Park ‘N Fly registration?
I suspect it is no accident that the applicant is using different coloration of the word PARK and the word FLY to provide a graphic separation of those adjacent terms, for reasons that appear likely motivated by the point of this post.
The question remains though, will that be enough to avoid likelihood of confusion with Park ‘N Fly? It’s kind of hard to interject graphics when the mark is spoken, right?