TMEP 1209.01(c)(iii): Generic Matter: Case References

This is the October 2015 Edition of the TMEP

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1209.01(c)(iii)    Generic Matter: Case References

Marks Held Generic

In the following cases, the matter sought to be registered was found generic: In re Nordic Naturals, Inc., 755 F.3d 1340, 111 USPQ2d 1495 (Fed. Cir. 2014) (CHILDREN’S DHA found generic for “nutritional supplements containing DHA”); In re 1800Mattress.com IP, LLC, 586 F.3d 1359, 92 USPQ2d 1682 (Fed. Cir. 2009) (MATTRESS.COM generic for “online retail store services in the field of mattresses, beds, and bedding”); In re Hotels.com, L.P., 573 F.3d 1300, 91 USPQ2d 1532 (Fed. Cir. 2009) (HOTELS.COM generic for “providing information for others about temporary lodging; [and] travel agency services, namely, making reservations and bookings for temporary lodging for others by means of telephone and the global computer network”); In re Reed Elsevier Properties Inc., 482 F.3d 1376, 82 USPQ2d 1378 (Fed. Cir. 2007) (LAWYERS.COM generic for “providing an online interactive database featuring information exchange in the fields of law, legal news and legal services”); In re Boston Beer Co. L.P., 198 F.3d 1370, 53 USPQ2d 1056, 1058 (Fed. Cir. 1999) (THE BEST BEER IN AMERICA for beer and ale held to be “so highly laudatory and descriptive of the qualities of [applicant’s] product that the slogan does not and could not function as a trademark to distinguish Boston Beer’s goods and serve as an indication of origin”); In re Gould Paper Corp., 834 F.2d 1017, 5 USPQ2d 1110 (Fed. Cir. 1987) (SCREENWIPE held generic as applied to premoistened antistatic cloths for cleaning computer and television screens); In re Northland Aluminum Products, Inc., 777 F.2d 1556, 227 USPQ 961 (Fed. Cir. 1985) (BUNDT, a term that designates a type of cake, held generic for ring cake mix); In re Meridian Rack & Pinion, 114 USPQ2d 1462 (TTAB 2015) (BUYAUTOPARTS.COM held generic for “on-line retail store services featuring auto parts”); In re ActiveVideo Network, Inc., 111 USPQ2d 1581 (TTAB 2014) (CLOUDTV held generic for software, non-downloadable software, broadcasting television programs, providing telecommunication connectivity services, and provision of audiovisual and multimedia content); In re Cordua Rests. LP, 110 USPQ2d 1227 (TTAB 2014) (CHURRASCOS held generic for a restaurant featuring churrasco steaks); Sheetz of Del., Inc. v. Doctor’s Assocs. Inc., 108 USPQ2d 1341 (TTAB 2013) (FOOTLONG held generic for sandwiches, excluding hot dogs); In re Greenliant Sys., Ltd., 97 USPQ2d 1078 (TTAB 2010) (NANDRIVE held generic for electronic integrated circuits that include high-speed solid state flash memory drives); In re Wm. B. Coleman Co., Inc., 93 USPQ2d 2019 (TTAB 2010) (ELECTRIC CANDLE COMPANY held generic for “light bulbs; lighting accessories, namely, candle sleeves; lighting fixtures”); In re Tires, Tires, Tires, Inc., 94 USPQ2d 1153 (TTAB 2009) (TIRES TIRES TIRES held generic for retail tire store services); Stuart Spector Designs, Ltd. v. Fender Musical Instruments Corp., 94 USPQ2d 1549 (TTAB 2009) (product design configurations of “the body portion of a guitar” held generic for “guitar bodies”); In re Noon Hour Food Prods., Inc., 88 USPQ2d 1172 (TTAB 2008) (BOND-OST held generic for cheese); In re Rosemount, Inc., 86 USPQ2d 1436 (TTAB 2008) (REDUCER generic for “flow meters used for measuring flow through pipes; vortex flow meters”); In re Lens.com, Inc., 83 USPQ2d 1444 (TTAB 2007) (LENS held generic for “retail store services featuring contact eyewear products rendered via a global computer network”); In re Active Ankle Sys., Inc., 83 USPQ2d 1532 (TTAB 2007) (DORSAL NIGHT SPLINT generic for “orthopedic splints for the foot and ankle”); In re Int'l Bus. Machs. Corp., 81 USPQ2d 1677 (TTAB 2006) (ESERVER generic for “computer network access products, namely, computer hardware and operating software therefor that allow connectivity to and the administration of public and proprietary computer networks and the processing of information contained thereon”); In re The Outdoor Recreation Grp., 81 USPQ2d 1392 (TTAB 2006) (OUTDOOR PRODUCTS generic for a class of goods worn and used by persons engaged in outdoor activities); In re Rodale Inc., 80 USPQ2d 1696 (TTAB 2006) (NUTRITION BULLETIN held generic for “providing information in the field of health and diet via a web site on the Internet”); In re DNI Holdings Ltd., 77 USPQ2d 1435 (TTAB 2005) (SPORTSBETTING.COM held generic for “provision of casino games on and through a global computer network wherein there are no actual monetary wagers; provision of contests and sweepstakes on and through a global computer network; [and] providing a web site on and through a global computer network featuring information in the fields of gaming, athletic competition and entertainment”); In re Eddie Z’s Blinds & Drapery, Inc., 74 USPQ2d 1037 (TTAB 2005) (BLINDSANDDRAPERY.COM generic for retail store services featuring blinds, draperies, and other wall coverings, conducted via the Internet); In re Candy Bouquet Int’l, Inc., 73 USPQ2d 1883 (TTAB 2004) (CANDY BOUQUET generic for “retail, mail, and computer order services in the field of gift packages of candy”); In re Cell Therapeutics Inc., 67 USPQ2d 1795 (TTAB 2003) (CELL THERAPEUTICS INC. generic for pharmaceutical preparations and laboratory research and development services); In re Am. Inst. of Certified Pub. Accountants, 65 USPQ2d 1972 (TTAB 2003) (CPA EXAMINATION held generic for “printed matter, namely, practice accounting examinations; accounting exams; accounting exam information booklets; and prior accounting examination questions and answers”); In re Am. Acad. of Facial Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, 64 USPQ2d 1748 (TTAB 2002) (FACIAL PLASTIC SURGERY held generic for training, association, and collective membership services, where evidence showed that the phrase “facial plastic surgery” is a recognized field of surgical specialization); In re A La Vieille Russie, Inc., 60 USPQ2d 1895 (TTAB 2001) (RUSSIANART generic for dealership services in the field of fine art, antiques, furniture, and jewelry); Cont'l Airlines Inc. v. United Airlines Inc., 53 USPQ2d 1385 (TTAB 1999) (E-TICKET generic for computerized reservation and ticketing of transportation services); In re Log Cabin Homes Ltd., 52 USPQ2d 1206 (TTAB 1999) (LOG CABIN HOMES generic for architectural design of buildings and retail outlets selling kits for building log homes); In re Web Commc'ns, 49 USPQ2d 1478 (TTAB 1998) (WEB COMMUNICATIONS generic for consulting services to businesses seeking to establish sites on a global computer network); In re Cent. Sprinkler Co., 49 USPQ2d 1194 (TTAB 1998) (ATTIC generic for sprinklers installed primarily in attics); In re Stanbel Inc., 16 USPQ2d 1469 (TTAB 1990), aff’d, 20 USPQ2d 1319 (Fed. Cir. 1991) (ICE PAK for reusable ice substitute for use in food and beverage coolers held generic); In re The Paint Prods., Co., 8 USPQ2d 1863 (TTAB 1988) (PAINT PRODUCTS CO. for “interior and exterior paints and coatings, namely, alkyd, oil, latex, urethane and epoxy based paints and coatings” held so highly descriptive as to be incapable of becoming distinctive); In re Analog Devices Inc., 6 USPQ2d 1808 (TTAB 1988), aff’d, 871 F.2d 1097, 10 USPQ2d 1879 (Fed. Cir. 1989) (ANALOG DEVICES held generic for devices having analog capabilities); In re Mortg. Bankers Ass’n of Am., 226 USPQ 954 (TTAB 1985) (CERTIFIED MORTGAGE BANKER (“MORTGAGE BANKER” disclaimed) for “educational services, namely providing qualifying examinations, testing and grading in the field of real estate finance” held so highly descriptive as to be incapable of functioning as a mark notwithstanding evidence of acquired distinctiveness); In re Half Price Books, Records, Magazines, Inc., 225 USPQ 219, 222 (TTAB 1984) (HALF PRICE BOOKS RECORDS MAGAZINES for retail book and record store services “is incapable of designating origin and any evidence of secondary meaning can only be viewed as ‘de facto’ in import and incapable of altering the inability of the subject matter for registration to function as a service mark”).

Marks Held Not Generic

In the following cases, the matter sought to be registered was found not to be generic: In re Steelbuilding.com, 415 F.3d 1293, 75 USPQ2d 1420 (Fed. Cir. 2005) (STEELBUILDING.COM not generic for “computerized on line retail services in the field of pre-engineered metal buildings and roofing systems,” but evidence submitted by applicant insufficient to establish acquired distinctiveness under §2(f)); In re Dial-A-Mattress Operating Corp., 240 F.3d 1341, 57 USPQ2d 1807 (Fed. Cir. 2001) (1-888-M‑A-T-R-E-S-S not generic for “telephone shop-at-home retail services in the field of mattresses”); In re Am. Fertility Soc'y, 188 F.3d 1341, 51 USPQ2d 1832 (Fed. Cir. 1999) (SOCIETY FOR REPRODUCTIVE MEDICINE not generic for association services in the field of reproductive medicine); In re Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Inc., 828 F.2d 1567, 4 USPQ2d 1141 (Fed. Cir. 1987) (CASH MANAGEMENT ACCOUNT for “stock brokerage services, administration of money market fund services, and providing loans against securities services” held merely descriptive, rather than generic, and remanded to Board to consider sufficiency of §2(f) evidence); H. Marvin Ginn Corp. v. Int'l Ass’n of Fire Chiefs, Inc., 782 F.2d 987, 228 USPQ 528 (Fed. Cir. 1986) (FIRE CHIEF not generic for publications); Alcatraz Media, Inc. v. Chesapeake Marine Tours Inc., 107 USPQ2d 1750 (TTAB 2013) (ANNAPOLIS TOURS, with TOURS disclaimed, not generic for “conducting guided tours of historic districts and other areas of cities,” but cancellation granted on ground that mark was merely descriptive and had not acquired distinctiveness); Baroness Small Estates, Inc. v. Am. Wine Trade, Inc., 104 USPQ2d 1224, 1229 (TTAB 2012) (CMS not generic acronym for “wine” made from the grape varietals cabernet, merlot, and syrah; the Board noted that “the fact that a term is derived from individual generic words or even a listing of generic words does not necessarily make the derived term generic”); In re Tennis Indus. Ass’n, 102 USPQ2d 1671 (TTAB 2012) (TENNIS INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION not generic for “association services, namely, promoting the interests of tennis facilities, tennis manufacturers, tennis retailers and tennis court contractors; providing market research services to track the economic vitality of the tennis industry,” but applicant failed to prove that the mark had acquired distinctiveness); In re Country Music Ass’n, 100 USPQ2d 1824 (TTAB 2011) (COUNTRY MUSIC ASSOCIATION, with ASSOCIATION disclaimed, not generic for “association services, namely, promoting country music entertainers and the country music recording industry;” evidence submitted by applicant held sufficient to demonstrate acquired distinctiveness under §2(f)); In re Am. Online, Inc., 77 USPQ2d 1618 (TTAB 2006) (INSTANT MESSENGER not generic for telecommunications services and computer services related to providing real time text messages; evidence submitted by applicant held sufficient to demonstrate acquired distinctiveness under §2(f)); Zimmerman v. Nat'l Ass’n of Realtors, 70 USPQ2d 1425 (TTAB 2004) (collective service marks REALTOR and REALTORS not generic for real estate brokerage, management, appraisal, and planning services); In re Federated Dept. Stores Inc., 3 USPQ2d 1541 (TTAB 1987) (THE CHILDREN’S OUTLET (“OUTLET” disclaimed), while merely descriptive of applicant’s “retail children’s clothing store services,” held capable of functioning as a mark, with evidence submitted by applicant sufficient to establish acquired distinctiveness pursuant to §2(f)); Hunter Publ'g Co. v. Caulfield Publ'g Ltd., 1 USPQ2d 1996 (TTAB 1986) (SYSTEMS USER for periodic trade journal held merely descriptive, rather than generic, and applicant’s evidence held sufficient to establish acquired distinctiveness pursuant to §2(f)); In re Failure Analysis Assocs., 1 USPQ2d 1144 (TTAB 1986) (FAILURE ANALYSIS ASSOCIATES, for “consulting services in the field of mechanical, structural, metallurgical, and metal failures, fires and explosions; engineering services in the field of mechanical design and risk analysis” and “consulting engineering services in the metallurgical field,” found to be merely descriptive of applicant’s services rather than incapable of distinguishing them from those of others; evidence submitted by applicant held sufficient to demonstrate acquired distinctiveness under §2(f)).