Meghan Markle’s trade mark application for the word “Archetypes” has been refused by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”).
The application was filed under Harry & Meghan’s audio-first production company Archewell Audio and has been provisionally refused on the grounds there is a “likelihood of confusion” with an earlier trade mark.
Markle has until 18 April 2023 to respond to the provisional refusal and should she fail to do so, the mark will be considered to have been abandoned. In order to proceed with the application, Markle will have to file arguments to persuade the examiner at the USPTO that no likelihood of confusion will occur. There is also an option of getting consent from the earlier rights holder.
Should Markle fail to persuade the examiner there is no likelihood of confusion, or not respond to the provisional refusal, she would still be able to proceed with the podcast without having the mark registered. However, the owner of the similar, earlier mark may bring action for trade mark infringement, should they reasonably wish to do so.
It is to be seen how Markle will choose to proceed.
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