RE: Trademark usage guidelines

Subject: RE: Trademark usage guidelines
From: "Ken Poshedly" <Ken_Poshedly/Parts/ProductSupport/GA/KFI -at- kfiusa -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 5 Apr 2001 10:00:59 -0400

> And whether they like it or not, that's exactly what happened with
> "Kleenex" facial tissue and "Xerox" photocopiers (though Xerox still
> any and all attempts to make it a generic synonym for photocopying.
> BTW, here in Atlanta, "Coke" (as in "Coca Cola") is said to be pretty
> generic for any soft drink be it a real Coca Cola, sweet tea (ice tea in
> Atlanta), root beer or whatever. Not being from here originally (very few
> of us are anymore), I guess you say "I'll have a Coke, and that would be
> sweet tea, please." And, this being the home of Coca Cola, we Pepsi fans
> are in a minority.
> -- Ken Poshedly
> Komatsu Forklift USA
> Paul Newbold <paul -dot- newbold -at- lightwork -dot- com> on 04/05/2001 09:43:37 AM
> I read that the once trademark 'Hoover' (for vacuum cleaner) became
> through common usage and can now be used without restriction - presumably
> as
> 'hoover'. Having your product name pass into widespread usage can't be
> bad for business though!
> Paul Newbold
> LightWork Design
> Sheffield, UK
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Hager, Harry (US - East Brunswick) [mailto:hhager -at- dc -dot- com]
> Sent: Thursday, April 05, 2001 2:09 PM
> Subject: RE: Trademark usage guidelines
> Rowena,
> You asked about rules for trademarks.
> Here's a rule for trademarks that I follow:
> - Do not use your trademark name as a noun. Always (almost always) use it
> as
> an adjective, especially in any advertisements, press releases, and so
> If you continually use your trademark as a noun, you run the risk of
> the trademark for the product.
> I think the rational goes something like this: If you, your customers,
> the public in general start using your trademark as a noun, it can pass
> into
> the public domain as the generic term for all like products and is no
> longer
> considered a trademark. There are several examples of this but the only
> I can remember at the moment is escalator. Escalator was a trademarked
> about 1900 but apparently the company used it as a noun too many times
> it became the generic term for all motorized moving stairs.
> Of course, the trademarks that become generic names are usually the first
> product or the most popular product in their field, so this might not
> affect
> every trademark, but why take the chance.
> H. Jim Hager
> hhager -at- dc -dot- com
> Pittsburgh Data Center


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