Timothy Talks Trademark with WKLT

Timothy Young talks to Omelette about his concerns with the Huffington Post and Chipotle Mexican Grill, and why brand and trademark are important to small businesses like Food for Thought. Click here to listen to the full interview.

3 Comments

  • Mya Gaertner Posted July 11, 2016 1:24 pm

    “Food for thought” is a phrase that has been around for decades. It was not Your idea. You just stole the phrase and copyrighted it. Fair Trade? Hum… Let me think about that one. Ethics? I don’t think so.

    • Timothy Young Posted July 11, 2016 3:03 pm

      Mya: You are not alone. A lot of people confuse copyright with trademark. Copyright is the body of law that protects original authors or works of art from copy or theft for profit. I did not copyright Food For Thought and there’s nothing preventing you from using or saying it. I registered the trademark “Food For Thought.” Trademark is intended to protect “first use” in commerce of words and symbols. It is there to protect common phrases and original works when used in commerce. That’s why you can protect things like McDonalds, Main Street Cafe, Sunrise Foods, American Airlines, Blue Planet etc. Chipotle didn’t create the word or the pepper, but Trademark law protects them from infringement because they were the first to use it as the name of a restaurant, just as I was the first to use Food For Thought. When it works it would protect you or I from starting a fast food restaurant called Chipotle or McDonalds. However it doesn’t always work when you have giant corporations infringing on small family owned businesses. It happens often and the little guys normally loose because they can’t afford the costs of civil litigation. Here’s an article about a number of small businesses just in our community that are faced with much larger adversaries in similar situations to ours.
      I hope this helps?
      http://www.traverseticker.com/story/local-businesses-facing-trouble-over-their-own-names

  • Mya Gaertner Posted July 12, 2016 2:47 am

    Mr.Young: Thank you for your response and clarifying this for me. I found it confusing. It was my error I am sorry.

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