Protecting Your Marks

Because lost marks cannot be revived, companies must be vigilant to protect against misuse of their marks that can lead to loss of rights. Following are some tips to promote proper use of marks:

  • Marks should be used as adjectives, not as nouns. Marks used as nouns run the risk of becoming generic. Thus, it is acceptable to say ''DRAMAMINE® pills prevent motion sickness'' and risky to say ''Dramamine is a motion sickness remedy.'' Famous marks are allowed some latitude, so the well-known jingle ''Have you driven a Ford lately?'' is permissible because of the long-standing fame of the FORD® trademark.

  • Marks should not be used in the possessive or plural form. Thus, saying ''Give me some dramamines'' may convert the mark into ...

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