Friday, September 25, 2015

MANHATTAN TAP WATER Merely Descriptive? Not So Fast...

As most attorneys [should] know, trademarks that merely describe the goods or services on or in connection with which the trademark is used are not registerable with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (with a few exceptions). See TMEP 1209.

On September 20th, the Manhattan Distilling Company, Inc. filed a federal trademark application for MANHATTAN TAP WATER. Does this trademark merely describe the goods on which the trademark is used?
Not in this case. The owner of the application should give you a hint. The specified goods are listed simply as "whiskey." This application shows how a mark that would be merely descriptive and unregisterable on certain goods (i.e. water) can be transformed into an arbitrary, and thus legally strong, trademark if used on other goods (i.e. whiskey).

Back to the trademark though - is this what they call water in Manhattan? If so, there must be a lot of thirsty New Yorkers.

No comments:

Post a Comment