–Dan Kelly, Attorney

Certain late-baby boomers and gen X’rs will know that 3 is “The Magic Number.”  Don’t believe me?  See here.

I raise this cultural referent principally because I once stumbled upon, quite by accident and for reasons that I cannot now recall, the following items in the U.S. Trademark database:

  • The English translation of “SAMSUNG” is “three stars.”
  • The English translation of “MITSUBISHI” is “three rhomboids.”
  • The English translation of “SANYO” is “three oceans.”

I was starting to wonder if I was on to something, like the blue oval phenomenon, thinking that there might be some Asian cultural affinity to the number three, but I was hard pressed to find other well-known (in the U.S.) brands from Asian companies that also had ties to the number three.  Alas, another great theory down the drain.  But I did find some telling design trademarks for these companies, some of them admittedly old:

And, of course, astute readers will know that Samsung’s current logo is…


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–Dan Kelly, Attorney

I recently had another experience of coming across a branding trend that, while perhaps old in the creative world, hit me squarely through close-in-time repetitive encounters with the phenomenon, starting with these three marks:

Not to get too complex, but the “My 29” station carries broadcasts of nearly all home and away

What do you think, is Overstock.com selling bling with the Fordless blue oval logo?

Enamel Turquoise with Blue Ovals Bangle Bracelet

As you may recall from my post back in September, Ford Motor Company is attempting to register the below shown non-verbal logo as a trademark for a variety of goods in Int’l Class 12:

Mark Image

And, as you may recall from Dan’s I See Blue Ovals post back in August, there are far more than a handful of blue oval logos out there besides this one:

 

The pending Fordless blue oval intent-to-use trademark application recently was examined by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (PTO), and on October 23, 2009, the PTO found no substantive bases for refusal, but instead it issued an initial refusal noting only a couple of purely procedural or technical deficiencies, concerning the wording in the lengthy description of goods and the need for Ford to submit a claim of ownership to some related registrations (here, here, and here).


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–Dan Kelly, Attorney

I think Steve once remarked something to the effect that the Internet is employment security for trademark attorneys.  Road tripping is too.  On one such recent occasion, my wife remarked on the similarity of Culver’s blue oval signage to Ford’s famous blue oval.

Obviously, there is no issue here from a trademark