TMEP 1205.01(b)(i): Nature of the Mark

This is the October 2015 Edition of the TMEP

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1205.01(b)(i)    Nature of the Mark

Under 36 U.S.C. §220506(a), no applicant other than the USOC is capable of having lawful use in commerce of marks containing the designated Olympic-related words and symbols, or any combination thereof, and an applicant cannot obviate the spirit of the law by crafting a mark that combines a designated Olympic-related word or symbol with a non-designated word or symbol. U.S. Olympic Comm. v. O-M Bread, Inc., 29 USPQ2d 1555, 1557-58 (TTAB 1993) (sustaining opposition to registration of OLYMPIC KIDS).

A refusal for unlawful use pursuant to §§1 and 45 of the Trademark Act, 15 U.S.C. §§1051 and 1127 or §§1, 3, and 45, 15 U.S.C. §§1051, 1053, and 1127, is required if the applicant’s mark contains the exact words or symbols, or any combination thereof, enumerated in the statute. See, e.g., In re Midwest Tennis & Track, Co., 29 USPQ2d 1386, 1388 (TTAB 1993) (reversing the refusal to register OLYMPIAN GOLDE since the mark did not comprise any of the forbidden words themselves, or a combination of them, and the statute did not encompass “simulations” of the listed words); U.S. Olympic Comm. v. Olymp-Herrenwaschefabriken Bezner GmbH & Co., 224 USPQ 497, 500 (TTAB 1984) (denying USOC’s opposition because OLYMP was not the same as OLYMPIC or OLYMPIAD, or a combination thereof, and, therefore, USOC cannot claim exclusive right of use).