Last year, 100% thunderstorms caused wailing in the cross-border circle. The common listing words that have always been regarded as harmless are actually registered trademarks, and a rogue law firm was entrusted to sue for infringement, which really caught everyone by surprise.
Unexpectedly, just after the 100% haze dissipated, there was another common word "problem". According to the seller’s sharing, more than 10 of his links have been changed because of the abuse of the trademark ONE. Later, some sellers also said that they had received the notification.
It is reported that this incident of trademark abuse mainly occurred in industrial products, affecting multiple sites in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, and Japan. The sellers who received the email all felt that it was outrageous that the word one could be registered as a trademark.
After inquiry, it was indeed found that the trademark registration information of ONE, the link was taken off the shelf, and the seller had no choice but to knock his teeth down. Fortunately, most sellers reported that it is not difficult to restore the link, just modify or delete "one". In the next few days, the affected sellers received Amazon's "technical error" emails one after another, which seems to be a misjudgment Oolong.
Although it was a false alarm, it also sounded the alarm for sellers. Common listing words or product keywords may hide the risk of infringement, especially product keywords, which have caused many sellers to stumble and have to guard against them.
In those years, the seller stepped on the keyword infringement pit
Keyword infringement pits are mainly divided into two categories: one is that keywords have the same meaning in Chinese and English, and have long been registered as trademarks, and sellers use them as pollution-free words without knowing the infringement. For example, HULA HOOP, which translates to hula hoop, so before the brand filed a case to defend its rights, "HULA HOOP" could be seen everywhere on Amazon.
There are also Frisbee (Frisbee), off-white (off-white), Tetris (Tetris), snore stopper (snore stopper), etc. Once these brands sue for infringement, many sellers will be affected.
The other type is that product keywords are preemptively registered as trademarks by interested people, and then malicious complaints are initiated based on this. For example, TWS, TWS is the abbreviation of True Wireless Stereo, which means true wireless, and is widely used in earphones, Bluetooth speakers and other products.
Malicious cybersquatting is generally aimed at seizing the market or extorting money. After TWS was registered as an EU trademark, many sellers were complained. Not only was the product listing removed from the shelves, but the seller was also extorted for a $3,000 withdrawal mediation fee, and the other party also proposed an authorization fee of $10,000 a year.
Some sellers have shared the situation of preemptive registration of keyword trademarks before, and also called on the victimized sellers to form a group, ask the law firm to write a statement of defense, and object to these trademarks during the publicity period.
In addition to keywords, malicious squatters will also focus on the seller's brand. Cross-site squatting and cross-category squatting are common spoofing methods. Sellers need to pay attention to prevent brand trademarks from being squatted.
How can sellers avoid stepping on pitfalls?
First of all, we should pay attention to the trademark search work. It is recommended to search for commonly used product keywords or unsure words. This will not only avoid the situation of unknowing infringement, but also detect squatting in time and respond promptly.
What should I do if I find that keywords/brand trademarks have been preemptively registered?
① For trademarks that are under application and have not yet been approved for registration, you can file an objection to the Trademark Office as soon as possible.
② For a trademark that has been successfully registered, an application can be made for invalidation or cancellation.
write at the end
Trademark infringement should not be underestimated. Often a word can remove the listing, freeze the account funds, and even lead to the removal of sales authorization. Once a trademark is preemptively registered, no matter which method is used to deal with it, it will suffer heavy losses. Therefore, while preventing infringement, don’t forget to prevent cybersquatting.
How to prevent trademark squatting?
①Strengthen trademark detection. If the enterprise/seller has plans to enter the US market, it should pay attention to the US trademark application announcement, and promptly file an objection or lawsuit if it is found that the squatting registration is found, and the squatting registration will be killed in the cradle.
②Register the trademark as soon as possible. Trademark registration is strictly territorial and is only protected in the place of registration. Domestically registered trademarks are not protected by law in the United States. Therefore, sellers need to register overseas trademarks as soon as possible to protect their own interests.
③ Defensive registration. Trademark protection can be divided into categories. Defensive registration can be carried out on similar or non-similar commodity categories to the trademark, and the trademark layout should be done well to avoid infringement.
If you want to know the trademark registration status of a certain vocabulary, or if you encounter infringement problems and don’t know how to solve them, please leave a message for consultation~