TMEP 1301.04(h)(iv)(B): Title or Launch Screens

This is the October 2015 Edition of the TMEP

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1301.04(h)(iv)(B)    Title or Launch Screens

A title or launch screen is an on-screen graphic typically displayed at the beginning of entertainment content, such as video games or ongoing television programs, often with other information about the content featured. For services such as Class 41 entertainment services involving the provision, production, or distribution of entertainment content, screenshots of title or launch screens from the content may create the requisite direct association between the mark and the services. Thus, title or launch screens may be acceptable specimens as long as their nature as such is clear either from the overall look and feel of the specimen or from the applicant’s description of the specimen.

While showing the title or launch screen being displayed on any particular electronic device (e.g., television, computer, or smartphone) is not required, a specimen showing an electronic device bearing the title or launch screen may be acceptable without further explanation because it places the mark in the context of how the services are rendered. See TMEP §1301.04(i), Example 14 (OUTERNAUTS). A title or launch-screen specimen showing only the mark but not the electronic device, with no specimen description or an insufficient description, may require a specimen description identifying the specimen as a title or launch screen and placing the mark in the context of the services. See TMEP §1301.04(i), Example 13 (DELICIOSO).

While title or launch-screen specimens may be acceptable to show service-mark use, the mark must be refused if the specimen shows that the mark is the title of a single creative work (e.g., the title or name of one episode of a television or radio program, one movie, or one show presented as a single event). See TMEP §§1202.08–1202.08(f) regarding titles of single creative works and §1301.02(d) regarding titles of radio and television programs.