Friday, April 7, 2017

AOL Files 8 Trademark Applications for OATH

On April 3rd, Verizon announced it planned to bring Yahoo and AOL together under a new brand name - Oath. The new name wasn't met with the greatest reception. Regardless, on that same day AOL, Inc. filed 8 federal trademark applications for OATH (in standard characters).
The applications span eight different classes of goods or services and AOL filed each application in a separate class (hence the eight applications). Those goods and services may give us an insight into Verizon's (ed. - maybe an assignment of this mark from AOL to Verizon at some point?) plan for the new brand. Some of the goods and services covered by the applications include:
AOL filed all these applications on an intent to use basis, suggesting the mark is not yet being used in the U.S. (which makes sense given the Summer 2017 rebranding date).

Interestingly, these are not the first trademark applications filed for the OATH name by AOL (although they are the first filed in the U.S.). AOL is claiming a priority date of January 13, 2017 under Section 44(d) of the Trademark Act based on trademark applications it filed in Mauritius on that date for these same marks. See TMEP 806.01(c); 15 USC 1126(d). As I've blogged about before, such foreign filings are not uncommon for major companies, usually when the company wants to keep the trademark information from public view (not even country maintains a publicly accessible database of trademarks like the U.S.). Mauritius is one of the countries that does not maintain a searchable trademark database.

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