Oct 8, 2020

Sony and its battle for the “PS5” trade mark

While many gamers pre-order the much anticipated PlayStation 5 prior to its release on November 12 2020 in the US, Canada, Japan, Mexico and many other jurisdictions, the many gamers from India may have to wait a little longer.

On October 29 2019, a Delhi resident named Hitesh Aswani filed an application to register “PS5” as a trade mark in India. The applicant did so three months prior to Sony. It is unlikely that Aswani will be able to successfully register the mark as Sony has since opposed the registration. Sony and its PlayStation consoles have a clear presence in India so it is likely any opposition to Aswani’s application will succeed. Aswani has attempted to strengthen his legal position by opposing Sony’s similar trade mark applications for the PS5 in India. A representative for Sony has said that the opposition from Aswani does not cause an issue for Sony given the widespread use and recognition of its PlayStation marks in India.

Many brands file stealth trade mark applications by making trade mark applications in a smaller jurisdiction in order to claim priority over the mark. It appears Sony has used this strategy by claiming its application in India claims priority through its prior application in the territory of Jamaica. These stealth applications made by brands is an attempt to anticipate squatters.

Nevertheless, whether Sony successfully opposes Aswani’s application, this gives a clear indication of how important it is for brands to efficiently protect their brands especially when there is a risk of squatting.

If you have any questions on the above, please do not hesitate to contact the team at McDaniels Law on 0191 281 4000 or legal@mcdanielslaw.com

Posted by: Tom Staveley in: EU/International, Trade Marks

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