U.S. Senate Passes Resolution To Increase Trademark Protection Awareness

The U.S. Senate passed Senate Resolution 580 recognizing and supporting public awareness of trademark protection. Senator Chuck Grassley (Iowa) introduced the resolution and it was unanimously agreed to by the Senate Judiciary Committee.

The Resolution states that “consumers in the United States encounter an average of 1,500 trademarks each day.” This is a staggering statistic and means that in a year a consumer will encounter 547,500 trademarks. Some of these trademarks may indicate the same source, but even if there is some duplication this number is impressive. This number highlights the importance of trademark protection, which starts with selecting a distinctive trademark. And working with a naming firm is extremely helpful in developing that distinctive mark.

Moreover, if we encounter 1,500 trademarks in a day, it suggests that we do not spend a meaningful amount of time with each mark. In fact, we are spending on average less than a minute on each mark because there are only 1,440 minutes in a day. This means there is a high probability that confusion can occur between two similar marks for similar goods or services, which can result in lost sales. This is why conducting a trademark search, protecting your trademark rights by filing trademark applications, and then enforcing your trademark rights against confusingly similar trademarks is important to any business.

We try our best to educate entrepreneurs about the importance of trademarks and trademark protection because there is a clear disparity between the number of businesses that are started each year and the number of trademark applications filed each year. According to the 2017 Kauffman Index, about 540,000 adults became business owners in a given month. For a year, that means about 6,480,000 new businesses were started in a year. And this number does not reflect the number of existing businesses that launch new products or services under new names. However, only 594,107 federal trademark applications were filed in 2017. Lack of awareness about the importance of trademarks is likely the culprit for the disparity.

The Senate Resolution also states that:

[E]ducating the public about the value of brand names and trademarks in an increasingly competitive global marketplace serves the public interest of helping to safeguard consumers against deception and confusion in the marketplace.

Everyone working with entrepreneurs and businesses generally should work to spread the word about the importance of trademark protection because intellectual property fuels innovation, which create jobs in the United States.

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