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socrateaser
socrateaser, Lawyer
Category: Intellectual Property Law
Satisfied Customers: 37971
Experience:  Retired (mostly)
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I am co-authoring a book that we've decided to title "Shift

Customer Question

I am co-authoring a book that we've decided to title "Shift Into Thrive: Six Strategies for Women to Unlock the Power of Resiliency". I just did a google search and found a company that has a service they identify as "Shift into THRIVE™: Create Rapid Change with our Expert Coaches."
I searched the USPTO database but did not find any entries for "Shift Into Thrive".
Could I be in hot water if I move forward with publishing the book using this title? Should I try to submit an application to PTO to trademark this name before anyone else?
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Intellectual Property Law
Expert:  socrateaser replied 4 months ago.

Hello,

The TM symbol is generally used to indicate a "common law trademark," which is a branding mark that is not registered with the USPTO, and can only provide exclusivity in a limited geographic area where the owner operates its business.

A book title is not a trademark, and vise versa. The title is intended to identify a single entity: the book. A trademark is intended to identify a brand of products or services used in commerce.

Even if your competitor were to argue that your book title infringes its mark, since it doesn't actually have a trademark, it could only prevent you from marketing your book in the same geographic region in which your competitor markets its products. You cannot be prevented from using the title anywhere else in the USA.

If it were me, I'd choose a different name for the book, just because it eliminates controversy in advance. But, you can use the name, if you choose. And, you can register a trademark, but your competitor can continue to use the same name in its geographic locale.

I hope I've answered your question. Please let me know if you require further clarification. And, please provide a positive feedback rating for my answer (click 3, 4 or 5 stars) -- otherwise, I receive nothing for my efforts in your behalf.

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Expert:  socrateaser replied 4 months ago.

Hello again,

I see that you have reviewed my answer, but that you have not provided a rating. Do you need any further clarification concerning my answer, or is everything satisfactory?

If you need further clarification, concerning this matter, please feel free to ask. If not, I would greatly appreciate a positive feedback rating for my answer (click 3, 4 or 5 stars) – otherwise, I receive nothing for my efforts in your behalf.
Thanks again for using Justanswer!