Google Jumps Over Another Trademark Hurdle

Google Glass Trademark

July 29, 2014

Google has jumped through a major hoop in its efforts to register the word “Glass” as a federal trademark.

Google’s goal is to allow it’s product, which allows you to access features via a mobile device via worn glasses, to be simply referred to as “Glass” instead of “Google Glass.”

Last year, Google’s application for the word “Glass” was rejected by the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) after two other patent holders objected. Google already owns the trademark for “Google Glass” but had sought out another registration for the word “Glass” and a version with its stylistic font and color used for its packaging. 

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Google has also ended its two year long battle with other trademark holders who contended that their own trademarks were “confusingly similar” to the tech giant’s Google Glass. Google had been struggling to cancel the companies’ trademark registrations through the USPTO.

The USPTO will not approve an applicant’s application for a trademark that is confusingly similar to another trademark. Trademark owners must prove a likelihood that a reasonable person would confuse or mistaken the source of the services or goods for another.

In addition, the USPTO will not register a trademark that it sees “merely descriptive.” A merely descriptive trademark is one that only describes the goods or services for which the mark is being used rather than identifying the source of the goods or services. And although Google has overcome the confusion hurdle, there is a chance that the tech giant will face another hurdle.

All the details of the settlement agreement have not been made public but records do indicate two factors. First, the companies have transferred their ownership interests in their registered trademarks to the companies and second relinquished their domain names containing the word “Glass.” 

Attorney for the two companies, Stephen Driscoll, stated that they have resolved their disputes with Google to “mutual satisfaction of each party.” Google declined to comment beyond that their issues have been resolved.  



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