Prosecuting Eco-Marks Part V: Acquired Distinctiveness Wins the Day for GREEN PATENT BLOG

In a previous post, I discussed the new argument and accompanying evidence of acquired distinctiveness that I raised in prosecuting the GREEN PATENT BLOG eco-mark application.

Acquired distinctiveness is a trademark law concept which means that the mark, though it may not be inherently distinctive enough for trademark protection, has become sufficiently distinctive through use so that consumers have come to recognize it as a source identifier for the goods or services.

The argument was presented in a Request for Reconsideration after the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office (PTO) issued a final Office Action rejecting my application on descriptiveness grounds.

Last month the PTO issued a Notice of Publication (gpb_notice.pdf), which means the Examining Attorney was persuaded by the acquired distinctiveness argument and believes the GREEN PATENT BLOG trademark application is allowable.

The next step is that my trademark information is published for opposition, and if nobody opposes registration within 30 days, it will become a registered trademark.

Many thanks to those of you who provided evidence for me in the form of e-mails stating that GREEN PATENT BLOG has come to identify my blogging services.  I couldn’t have done it without you, my readers.

I can’t help but recall a comment on one of my earlier posts in this series from an anonymous reader who outlined his or her rather bleak view of my options at the time:

Let’s see. Your options are (1) give up; or (2) request reconsideration by the Examining Attorney, and lose; and/or (3) file an appeal and lose; and/or (4) change the name of your blog to something that might be registrable.

If there’s one lesson to learn from this experience, it’s don’t get discouraged by ‘nonymous nabobs of negativism.

Eric Lane Avatar

Eric Lane

Eric Lane, the founder and principal of Green Patent Law, is an intellectual property lawyer and registered U.S. patent attorney in New York and is a member of the bar in New York and California. Eric has more than two decades of experience working with wind, solar PV, CSP, biofuels, and geothermal, energy storage technologies, carbon capture and sequestration, medical devices, data communications, mechanical, chemical, internet and software.