TMEP 904.03(h): Catalogs

This is the October 2015 Edition of the TMEP

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904.03(h)    Catalogs

In appropriate cases, catalogs are acceptable specimens of trademark use. See Lands’ End Inc. v. Manbeck, 797 F. Supp. 511, 24 USPQ2d 1314 (E.D. Va. 1992). In that case, the applicant had applied to register “KETCH” for purses. The specimen was a catalog page that included a picture of the goods and, below the picture, the mark and a description of the goods. The Court stated, “The alleged trademark ‘KETCH’ appears prominently in large bold lettering on the display of purses in the Lands’ End specimen in a manner which closely associates the term with the purses.” 24 USPQ2d at 1315.

The Court determined that the catalog was not mere advertising and that it met the relevant criteria for displays associated with the goods. The Court evaluated the catalog specimen as follows:

A customer can identify a listing and make a decision to purchase by filling out the sales form and sending it in or by calling in a purchase by phone. A customer can easily associate the product with the word “KETCH” in the display.... The point of sale nature of this display, when combined with the prominent display of the alleged mark with the product, leads this court to conclude that this mark constitutes a display associated with the goods.

24 USPQ2d at 1316.

Accordingly, examining attorneys may accept any catalog or similar specimen as a display associated with the goods, provided that it: (1) includes a picture or a sufficient textual description of the relevant goods; (2) shows the mark in association with the goods; and (3) includes the information necessary to order the goods (e.g., an order form or a phone number, mailing address, or e-mail address for placing orders).

However, the inclusion of a phone number, Internet address, and/or mailing address merely as part of corporate contact information on an advertisement describing the product is not in itself sufficient to meet the criteria for a display associated with the goods. There must be an offer to accept orders or instructions on how to place an order. See In re MediaShare Corp., 43 USPQ2d 1304,1306 (TTAB 1997) (finding applicant’s fact sheet brochure, which included an address and phone number but omitted any information as to product price and how to order applicant's software, was merely advertising material). It is not necessary that the specimen list the price of the goods.