Lecture 27: Four Types of Trademarks


[Music] What are the different types of “trademarks”? The term “trademark” describes any of
the four types of marks that can be registered with the United States Patent and Trademark
Office—trademarks, service marks, certification marks, and collective marks. Trademarks identify products—physical goods
and commodities—that are either manufactured, produced, grown, or that exist naturally. A trademark is a word, name, symbol, or device—or
combination of these—used to identify and distinguish the source of that product. Examples of trademarks include the Nike “Swoosh”
symbol, the arched “M” for McDonalds, and the bitten apple symbol for Apple Computer. What is a service mark? Service marks are exactly the same in principle
as trademarks except that the words, names, symbols, or devices identify and distinguish
the source of a service. Examples of service marks include the sleek
silver greyhound dog on Greyhound buses, and UPS’s brown shield emblazoned with the bold
yellow letters “UPS.” What is a certification mark? A certification mark is any word, phrase,
symbol, or design—or a combination of any of these—owned by one party that certifies
the goods and services of another party when they meet certain standards or requirements. A certification mark identifies either the
nature of a product or service—for example, that it meets the quality standards needed
to receive the “Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval”—or the origin of products or
services, as in the certification mark “Washington State” given to apples grown in that state. What is a collective mark? Collective marks come in one of two varieties:
collective trade and service marks, and collective membership marks. A collective trade or service mark is any
word, phrase, symbol, or design that is owned by a cooperative, association, collective
group, or organization and is used by its members to indicate the source of goods or
services. An example of a collective trademark is the
“Girl Scouts” logo seen on their iconic cookies every February. A collective membership mark, by contrast,
is used to indicate that a person is a member of some organization, such as a trade union
or an association like the Rotary Club, but is not used to identify the source of goods
and services.

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