Intellectual Property Law
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I ended the chat early by mistake.
Single words are protected by Trademark Law.
"GROUPON" is a registered Trademark owned by Groupon, INc.
Class of Goods
So you would not be allowed to use the word "GROUPON" for promoting goods and services of others via coupons, rebates, etc.
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I wish to verify you have read the additional information below as it is important.
Class of Goods
IC 035. US 100 101 102. G & S: Promoting the goods and services of others by providing a website featuring coupons, rebates, price-comparison information, product reviews, links to the retail websites of others, and discount information.
FIRST USE IN COMMERCE: 20081130 (November 30, 2008)
Thus, one would not be allowed to use the word "GROUPON" for promoting goods and services of others via coupons, rebates, etc.
Unless, one can prove they used the word "GROUPON" in commerce for promoting goods and services via coupons prior to November 30, 2008.
what is the best way to get a trademark, do you need to do a seach, before applying
One is not required to do a search but it would be very unwise to file a trademark application without searching the trademark database.
Here is a link to the USPTO website: http://www.uspto.gov/
Click on "Trademarks" (to the middle right);
Then Click on "TESS Search Trademarks"
Try "Basic Word Mark Search" first and enter the word or phrase you wish to trademark.
Best way to get a trademark :
Think of a word that has nothing to do with your product; i.e. an arbitrary word
Example: Apple as a mark for Computers (Apples have nothing to do with computers)
The closer your desired mark gets to the name of the actual product or surface the more unlikely the USPTO will approve the Mark.
Example: "Computer" for "Computers" No way one gets that mark.
Whatever mark you wish to use search it on the internet and the USPTO database.
If you find nothing you can then approach a trademark service company for help in filing an application.
Also note that such trademark service company can do the searches for you; such simply costs more.
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