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Izzabelha

Using Brands or names that are TM for attention to an ad

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First, let me say that I am not in the field of intellectual property (IP) law. My firm does have a group that handles IP law, and I have had a little bit of training in IP law but much has been forgotten.

There has been some good information and some disinformation in this thread. IP law is very complicated, and if you intend to use a trademark (or service mark), be very careful. 

From what I know about the subject, as an example, if you state that you "sell Coca-Cola cheaper that any other store", you are OK (assuming that is true). If you say that your soft drink "tastes better that Coke" you should be OK. If you make a soft drink and label it Koke, you are NOT OK. If you use someone else's trademark, or something that looks like someone else's trademark, for the purpose of selling your product or implying that there is some connection between your product and the other company's product, you should check with a lawyer first. There may be a serious problem.

Note: Coca-Cola® and Coke® are registered trademarks of The Coca-Cola Company.

Disclaimer: do not use the above as legal advice. If you need legal advice, contact an attorney who works in the area of IP law.

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Actually a long time ago Coca Cola said anyone is free to use their brand in SL, like make coke cans, bottles, coke machines, coke branded clothing, etc. as long as it isn't demeaning to their brand.

http://wiki.secondlife.com/wiki/Coca-Cola

But other than Coke, it is spelled out in the guidelines not to use real life brands.

https://marketplace.secondlife.com/listing_guidelines#branding-guidelines

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Jennifer Boyle wrote:


16 wrote:

...the rules for SL governed by the safe harbor provisions of DMCA. linden apply these provisions to the letter of the law...

For the record, the DMCA is only concerned with copyright infringement, not trademark infringement, and its procedures and safe harbor provision are only applicable to copyright infringement.  

yes my bad. I should be not be so casual about these things

it depends on the application

if i make some virtual Nike shoes and then try to sell them in SL as Nikes then linden will take them down. bc to leave them up renders linden itself liable under trade laws. trademark, counterfeit, etc

f i make some virtual Nike shoes for myself only then linden wont take them down bc is not a breach of the trade laws. for me to do this

Nike can still file a notice against me under DMCA. and linden will most probably play it safe and do the takedown if Nike did that

but can be argued in Court that this is a breach of USA 1st Amendment. altho not sure why I would bother take it to court. but I could if wanted. would win as well

 

 

 

 

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I merely replied with that since your responders were only getting half of the story. Get the entire story straight before you start a he-said-she-said discussion and pitting the naive against each other.

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There is one exception: parody. Last I heard, anything can legally be used for parody purposes. Like when "Weird Al" does parody songs but uses the melody. "To the tune of" is OK in parody. He asks permission to be polite but legally does not need to.*

Last I heard.

So, a clever person could use that loophole. And of course many just use a similar name. For instance there is a very old freebie shoe called SLikes, to sound like Nike.

 

* (It is also true of things other than songs: poems, anything. Even, I think, likenesses. And to portray a public figure in book or movie is legal, too. But their actual image is almost always owned by heirs, or some company who bought the image rights, so one must pay. Which is how we see Fred Astaire dancing with a vacuum cleaner. sigh)

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