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19 December 2008 @ 11:21 am
Okay, it probably only means other package delivery services, but WTF?  
"© 2008 United Parcel Service of America, Inc. UPS, the UPS brandmark, and the color brown are trademarks of United Parcel Service of America, Inc. All rights reserved." [emphasis added]
Arthur and Kevin's Nelloratnellorat on December 19th, 2008 04:40 pm (UTC)
I think Mattel has trademarked "Barbie pink."

Also makes me wonder if I violate UPS trademark when I go to the bathroom.
Janet Miles, CAP-OMjanetmiles on December 19th, 2008 04:49 pm (UTC)
I have a vague idea that UT has trademarked UT Orange and Aconda White, but I'm not actually sure about either of those.
rivka on December 19th, 2008 04:44 pm (UTC)
I suppose that your hair is juuuust light enough that you can get away with not paying them royalties, but others of us are not so lucky.
Janet Miles, CAP-OM: humorjanetmiles on December 19th, 2008 04:50 pm (UTC)
Who knew!?
El Coyote Gordo: pythagorassupergee on December 19th, 2008 04:50 pm (UTC)
Trademarks are for very limited purposes. A rolling-papers company owns "1.5" but you can still use it for equations and things.
Janet Miles, CAP-OM: competencejanetmiles on December 19th, 2008 04:53 pm (UTC)
*nods* I do know that, but I still suffer a brain-twitch whenever I see trademarks or service marks attached to everyday words and phrases (I remember that Carl's Jr. had a service mark for "Where do you want to eat?"), or, as here, a common color.
fatcook: ?????fatcook on December 19th, 2008 04:54 pm (UTC)
Harley-Davidson trademarked "potato-potato-potato" as the noise that their motor-cycles make. I don't remember what hertz.
Janet Miles, CAP-OM: i-own-an-almanacjanetmiles on December 19th, 2008 04:58 pm (UTC)
siliconshaman on December 19th, 2008 04:55 pm (UTC)
Umm....that's, special, alright...

Man, this copyright thing is getting out of hand. I mean, what they are they going to do, sue you for copyright infringement everytime you take a dump?!
Janet Miles, CAP-OMjanetmiles on December 19th, 2008 04:59 pm (UTC)
Well, as supergee noted, trademarks are limited, and in all likelihood this just applies to other package delivery services. I was just, well, as I put it, I get a brain-twitch when I see things like that.
Franklin Veauxtacit on December 19th, 2008 05:09 pm (UTC)
It's important to understand the difference between copyright and trademark. They're totally separate things, handled by different laws and different oversight (trademarks are administered by the Patent and Trademark Office in the US, not by the Copyright Office).

You can not copyright a word, phrase, expression, or color. You can trademark these things, but a trademark applies only to a specific trade. Caterpillar has trademarked their shade of yellow, but the trademark applies only to the construction equipment manufacturer trade. Toy makers, tax consultants, dentists, computer makers, and anyone else not in the business of making construction equipment can use Caterpillar yellow however they like.
Joe Morrisonargonel on December 19th, 2008 04:59 pm (UTC)
I'm not positive that it is trademarked, but caterpillar yellow is an official color. It is primarily used for construction equipment obviously.
Adrian Turtleadrian_turtle on December 19th, 2008 08:34 pm (UTC)
Trademarks are extremely specific. The insanity over copyright gets people all flinchy, but trademarking the color brown only means UPS is allowed to sue anybody who wears brown clothes (or uses a brown truck) *to deliver packages*.

Trademarks are only defensible so long as there is a strong association between the trademark (the name, the color, the emblem) and the company or product. If a lot of UPS workers are seen delivering packages in cold weather, wearing coats that are not brown over their uniforms, it weakens the association between UPS and the color brown...and thus makes the trademark less defensible in court. (A company I used to work for had a legal department that sent out frantic memos along these lines. Always capitalize "Z" in the company name! Never capitalize "z" for the powder! Always capitalize the printer names! Never verb the printer names, always write, "print with [printer name]." Lab notebooks are legal documents! We could lose our trademarks!)
Janet Miles, CAP-OMjanetmiles on December 19th, 2008 11:46 pm (UTC)
I knew about the importance of capitalizing trade names and not verbing nouns, but I didn't know that something as simple as too many workers wearing the wrong color jacket could weaken a trademark. Thank you!
Maggiesillymagpie on December 20th, 2008 12:17 am (UTC)
Nannimuejohn on December 20th, 2008 02:03 am (UTC)
Supershuttle has trademarked the specific shade of blue their vans are painted. You'll see plenty of blue shuttle vans at the airport, but not the same shade.