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Google has unsuccessfully been trying to trademark the word "Glass" for its hip tech toy Google Glass, but the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has denied all attempts.
The product's name, "Google Glass," has already been successfully trademarked by Google, but the tech company is struggling with the slightly more succinct "Glass," reports The Huffington Post.
Why is "Glass" difficult for Google to trademark?
Trademarking a Generic Name
Google isn't the only one trying to trademark a generic name. Not surprisingly, Facebook tried the same thing with "book," but CNET reports that it has only succeeded in trademarking "F," "Face," "FB," and "Wall."
So what's so difficult about "Glass?" Luckily, we don't have to guess, since the USPTO already sent Google a letter in September 2013 telling them exactly why "Glass" was a problem.
For starters, "Glass":
Business owners should already have considered some of these issues when choosing the names for their businesses.
Don't Overestimate Your Brand
While "Google" may be a household name by now, part of the struggle to register "Glass" is that Google overestimated its clout. According to The Wall Street Journal, in response to the USPTO's letter, Google sent a 1,928-page defense of its "Glass" application -- though most of those pages were news articles about Google Glass.
Trademarks are largely about customer confusion and association, and Google may have confused the company's own largess with consumer association with "Glass." Business owners would do well to heed the advice of the USPTO and consult an experienced trademark attorney in situations like these.
Especially for a product that, as of April, still isn't available to the public.
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