[consulting] Trademark policy [OT]

George D. DeMet demet at palantir.net
Thu Aug 13 15:57:26 UTC 2009

Eric Tucker wrote:
> Because the term Drupal is still known primarily to those who own or 
> operate web sites, it does not reach into "common use" vocabulary?
> If the term does not reach into the wider public, is it at less risk?
To be clear, I believe the term Drupal is currently at no risk of losing 
its trademark protection due to being genericized or abandoned.  If it 
were to be considered a "famous" mark, i.e., one that is widely known by 
the general public, it would actually receive some additional 
protections, however the burden of policing it would also increase.
> At least in America, since it's outside in the domain of what Drupal 
> is used for ... seems less likely this would cause problems?  Since 
> one can in principle trademark a certain term in a certain domain 
> whether or not it is used in another as long as not in the same 
> domain, if the term is in a different domain but does not meet the 
> standards of "common use" is the trademark not still valid?
Multiple trademarks can exist for a single term, provided that there's 
little or no chance of consumer confusion between them.  If someone were 
to apply for a trademark for "Drupal" as it relates to the manufacturing 
and sales of kitchen sinks, for example, one of the questions that would 
come up is whether or not granting that trademark could cause consumer 
confusion and/or diminish the strength of the Drupal mark as it applies 
to Web content management software.

George D. DeMet
2211 North Elston Suite 202
Chicago IL 60614
p 773.645.4100 x306
f 773.645.4105 

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