TEETHING RINGS AND BREAST PADS
Natalie Waldbaum, the lady behind Easy Nurse, has registered her logo for all kinds of baby related products, such as baby cream, teething rings, sheets for cots and breast pads. The easyGroup filed an opposition against this application for registration.
However, on 12 May the UK trademark office rejected easyGroup’s objections. Although the easyGroup has registered its trademarks broadly, including for products that come close to the baby products mentioned, the trademark office still believes that the trademarks are not sufficiently similar. Of course, Easy Nurse also contains the word Easy, but that is a very ‘basic English’ word with little distinctiveness. Moreover, the image elements in the Easy Nurse logo also make for enough distinction.
LOSS AFTER LOSS
Now, would a lot of people be surprised by this ruling? We don’t think so. We regularly write about all the procedures that the easyGroup instigates against companies that use the word Easy. Almost everything is lost by the easyGroup. Why do they keep on doing that, this time against such a sympathic brand with a completely different logo? On the WIPR website, a spokesperson for the easyGroup explains why they continue to do this.
‘EasyGroup takes the protection of the easy name and its associated marks very seriously. Our licensees pay good money to use it as a legitimate part of their business marketing strategy so it is simply unacceptable for others to come along and use it as and when they please—free, gratis and for nothing.’
Well, that may be so, but the fact that those licensees pay a lot of money is independent of whether you can have a monopoly on the non-distinctive word easy.