Thursday, February 24, 2011

WYHA? TTAB Affirms Refusal Of "LUVD G & Design" over "THE LOVED DOG" for Clothing

Pro se Applicant Cheryl Lynn Ingberg lost her appeal from a refusal to register the mark LUVD G & Design (shown below) for various human clothing items. The Board found her mark likely to cause confusion with the registered mark THE LOVED DOG for overlapping human clothing items. If it were up to you, would you have appealed? In re Ingberg, Serial No. 776633 (January 31, 2011) [not precedential].

Since the goods in the application and cited registration are in part identical, the Board must presume that they travel in the same channels of trade to the same classes of customers. This factor weighed heavily against Applicant Ingberg.

Moreover, the greater the similarity in the goods, the lesser the degree of similarity in the marks necessary to support a Section 2(d) refusal.

The dominant portion of the cited mark is LOVED DOG, since THE is merely an article. Applicant's mark would clearly be viewed as "LOVEDOG." The connotations of the two marks are similar: either a loved dog or one who loves dogs.

Applicant feebly pointed to several pending applications involving marks containing the words "love" and "dog," but they were not issued registrations and so had no probative value. In any case, each mark must be evaluated on its own merits, and even if the cited mark is a weak mark, it is still entitled to protection.

And so the Board affirmed the refusal.

TTABlog comment: Well, was this appeal a dog, or what? If you had to spend your own time and/or money, would you have appealed? Or is your bark worse than your bite?

Text Copyright John L. Welch 2011.


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