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Booking.com Will Make Brands ‘Think Twice’ on Generic Names

Managing IP

08 May 2020

Jennifer Taylor spoke to Managing IP about the U.S. Patent and Trade Office v. Booking.com U.S. Supreme Court case, which could have implications for how brands select generic names in the future.

While Booking.com has claimed it has no desire to prevent companies from using the term generically, Jennifer said this shouldn’t influence the court’s decision. “The Supreme Court decision isn’t going to say that they can register it but can’t use the registration to stop competitors from using similar marks like ebooking.com. They can’t write that into a decision, and there’s nothing to stop Booking.com from broadly enforcing its trademark.”

Jennifer added that some companies are already overly aggressive when enforcing descriptive terms and try to stop marks that don’t actually cause consumer confusion, noting that “if you start to allow generics.com domain names to be registered, it could exacerbate that problem.”

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