If you have eyes and ears, then you've probably seen, heard about, or wasted many hours of your life playing Angry Birds. Well, you're not alone. Rovio Entertainment Ltd., the owners of the Angry Birds trademark, said that its games have been downloaded over 1 billion times, with 3.33 million hours per day wasted on mindless Angry Bird gaming.
Angry All Around
So, with such a valuable trademark to protect, when it found out about Angry Clubs, a golf equipment company, with a logo curiously evocative of the Angry Birds trademark, Rovio sued to protect its assets.
At the end of November, District Judge Marcia G. Cooke, for the Southern District of Florida, entered a final judgment and permanent injunction against Angry Clubs, LLC . As part of the settlement, Angry Clubs did not admit liability, but agreed to stop using the name Angry Clubs or the "A" logo that is on its products.
This was great work on the part of Rovio, as it acted to protect its marks, and prevent any further dilution that may occur. Which leads us to ask, what is your company doing to protect its trademarks?
One of the main ways that you can monetize the legal department and turn it into a profit center is by protecting your IP. Your mark is only as strong as your protection efforts. Constant monitoring is necessary to make sure that other infringing marks or products don't dilute your products, and as a lawyer, this responsibility falls to you (or someone in your department). Figure out who that person is, and make sure that there are procedures in place to search out new marks coming into the market that could in any way dilute your company's valued IP.
What does you company do to police its IP? Let us know on LinkedIn.