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Old April 26th, 2012, 06:31 PM   #1
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Project titles - trademark?

Okay, so I'm looking for a name for my project. From what i've found I can't use a title name that has been trademarked. Trademarks can be searched for on Trademarks Home

So, as a test I went on here and typed in Star Trek. Up came Star Trek, Star Trek The Next Generation, Star Trek Deep Space Nine, etc etc... So clearly the site works and displays film and television show titles.

After this I typed in a few title ideas that I had, one of which was a failed TV pilot that never aired. And another is the title of a romantic comedy. There were no results for these titles.

So the question is, if the title is not on the .gov site, is it fair game to use as the title of my project?

Thanks
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Old April 26th, 2012, 07:03 PM   #2
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Re: Project titles - trademark?

Early in the 21st century, you can bet most 'project titles' have been used more than once without any serious recriminations ..
as long as you're not directly copying or simulating the project to the point where you WILL be sued.

Except I'd stay off anything that James Cameron and Scorsese have used and obviously keep away from titles with Ford, Kellogs etc.

Cheers.
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Last edited by Allan Black; April 26th, 2012 at 07:30 PM. Reason: I'm not a lawyer.
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Old April 29th, 2012, 08:52 AM   #3
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Re: Project titles - trademark?

While it may not answer your particular question, here's an interesting article on the subject: Reuse and Confuse?: Hollywood’s Recycling of Movie Titles | LawLawLandBlog.com
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Old April 29th, 2012, 06:20 PM   #4
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Re: Project titles - trademark?

Great find Chris, an interesting read and pretty well expands on what I said. For anyone who doesn't have time to read it, with appropriate credit to the author, here's a great quote from the Marx Bros adventures...

"In one of the earliest examples of an MPAA title dispute, Warner Bros. registered the title Casablanca in 1942, and then demanded that the title of the Marx Bros.’s A Night in Casablanca be changed. In what could be the best-ever response to a cease-and-desist letter, Groucho Marx reportedly stated that he “had no idea that the City of Casablanca belonged exclusively to Warner Brothers . . . What about ‘Warner Brothers’ — do you own that too? You probably have the right to use the name Warner, but what about Brothers? Professionally, we were brothers long before you were.” Warner Bros. later dropped its objection, and in 1946, A Night in Casablanca was released."

Paul, I'd stay off all the titles in the above to :)

Cheers.
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