Trademarks

Just to keep everyone update with regard to trademarks (worth noting that we pursue TMs not to restrict others from using our names and digital assets, but to ensure that we are not restricted in their use). Our strategy for the TM ‘maidsafe’, for example, has been to file to protect the word (as it offers broader protection than a logo) within the UK and once registration has been confirmed, use the Madrid System to spread that registration internationally. This has worked well for ‘maidsafe’ and we now have protection in the UK, Europe, US and Japan (refused in Australia and China).

I have started to go through the same process for ‘safecoin’ and ‘Safe Network’ with limited success. I was unable to overcome objections for ‘safe network’ and this is ultimately refused, although I have passed through the first stage with ‘safecoin’. However, there is a EU community mark for safecoin that is likely to hamper international progress. I may try and get around this by filing for protection on the safecoin logo itself as a backup.

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What about SAFEnet or just safenet?

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or safernet?

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I was hoping someone would mention this one :smiley:

I really like the term SAFE (Secure Access For Everyone), from where we can have

SAFEnetwork
SAFEcoin
SAFEphone
SAFEwallet
SAFEXCHANGE

To name a few, this will give the same recognizable names like Bitcoin has with the word BIT in front of everything that is being developed around Bitcoin.

Don’t know if you can do something with SAFE regarding to trademarks ?

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Secure… Access For Everyone!

It’s not GNU :slight_smile:

SAFE is to general to trademark as is, but in combinations like those it should be fine.

Depending on cost - maybe crowdfund? - we could trademark the most important ones to limit the chances of people or corporations squatting, or capitalising on the brand with non-SAFE products.

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Absolutely or find a way of public attribution like we can with images (creative commons) I am not sure if we had a CC image if it prevents trademark squatting etc. the law in europe changed to now allow even copy marks, but the UKPTO informs everyone.

I wonder what the world order now thinks of CC for images (pretty well know) but in relation to trademarks. I wonder if we created create images and got them on the maidsafe wikipedia page or better a SAFE page there if it qualifies as prior art seen by patent offices etc.

Then the bigger point, if we could achieve the same with the names alone? I know the patent attorneys and trademark specialists would hate this, but if we can get stuff public enough then it protects if from later infringement issues. We lose the ability to stop folks mimicking us but that is the cost of freedom. Look those counterparty msafe tokens that were being touted as the real thing, but I think thats part of life nowadays. Let folk copy and even try top scam, we can work out better ways to protect people than highly paid lawyers and court time

Maybe trademarks is something we can do a bit different ? I do not know, so just brainstorming as usual

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The problem with the incorporating 'SAFE" in the eyes of the UK IPO:

"The application is not acceptable in Classes 9, 38 or 42. There is an objection under Section 3(1)(b) and © of the Act. This is because the mark consists exclusively of a sign which may serve in trade to designate the kind and intended purpose of the goods/services e.g. software, network telecommunications services, Development of software solutions for internet providers and internet users, Development of software for secure network operations, all for providing and/or relating to providing a ‘safe network’.

The objection stands because the mark ‘safe network’ could apply to any undertaking in the same field, it does not distinguish the goods or services of one single undertaking.Marks are unacceptable as trademarks “if they cannot be recognised as signs that differentiate your goods or services from someone else’s”

You have said, and I quote “while the platform is certainly safe or put another way secure (through cryptography) the aim of the platform is to focus on the storage and accessibility of data” and “The word safe is in fact an acronym for Secure Access For Everyone and therefore the focus for the platform is accessibility”
Please note that as the word ‘safe’ is a recognised dictionary word, and that the mark ‘safe network’ is the mark you have applied for, that is all we are in view of when it comes to examining a mark. If an acronym reads as an actual dictionary word, that recognised word is all we can examine in relation to the goods or services applied for.

As far as I am concerned at this time ‘the mark is a sign which may be used in trade to designate the kind and intended purpose of the goods and services e.g. software, network telecommunications services, Development of software solutions for internet providers and internet users, Development of software for secure network operations, all for providing and/or relating to providing a ‘safe network’.

Without any further evidence that this is not the case, the objections are being maintained."

I would expect that we will encounter similar issues with ‘safernet’

I should have added that ‘your mark is not distinguishable’ is the most common rebuttal by the UK IPO. Acquired distinctiveness is often something that is achievable through use and proving that ‘acquired distinctiveness’ has been achieved usually relies on sales figures and advertising budgets. So we are at a dis advantage trying to protect a mark that it is not yet ‘in use’.

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As I understand it, the prior art laws that exist with patents do not exist with trademarks in the UK. It is really the first to file the TM that controls the situation. Section 5 of the Trade Marks Act states:

(1)A trade mark shall not be registered if it is identical with an earlier trade mark and the goods or services for which the trade mark is applied for are identical with the goods or services for which the earlier trade mark is protected.

Interesting to note that the UKIPO leave it up to the existing TM holder to object to a competing mark. This is why we have @justine_mclevy search the applications journal every week (lucky her!).

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Awwwww @Seneca, well at least we tried…

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