Can You Trademark Awareness Of A Disease?

from the someone's-trying dept

BoingBoing has the latest story of trademark insanity, where a "charity" focused on the rare, but apparently serious disease of Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia (CDH), is trying to trademark the phrase "Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia Awareness" and appears to be threatening other charities for using the phrase, and (according to this petition) has filed complaints to get fundraising stores shut down for using the phrase. The whole thing is so bizarre, and so far outside the purpose of trademark law that it's really difficult to understand how this issue could have gone as far as it has. But, you have to say one thing for the charity doing this: they have "raised awareness" of CDH.

Filed Under: awareness, congenital diaphragmatic hernia, trademark

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  1. identicon
    usmcdvldg, 9 Jan 2009 @ 11:10am


    As u probably know, I'm usually the first to note when this site cry's wolf but....

    Actually, another charity organization would not be able to use the phrase, CDH awareness because this charity would own in. Just like Adidas can't use "Just do it" because its owned by Nike, any organization that performs a function simalar to that of CDH awareness,Breath of Hope, Inc would be bared from using this phrase in association with themselves. For instance, they couldn't say "we provide CDH awareness" or "we support CDH awareness" because that phrase is the legal "mark" of all trade pertaining to Breath of Hope, Inc.

    Know I'm not that well verse in trademark law so I can't speak to the actual legality of this, but the idea does seem distasteful at the very least!

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