TRADEMARKING "BALLYHOO BURNY" (& how I kind of stuffed up)
17 March 2019
On the 21st November 2018, I went online to the INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY OFFICE OF NEW ZEALAND and through their MINISTRY OF BUSINESS, INNOVATION & EMPLOYMENT Department, I started the complicated process of applying to register a trademark for "BALLYHOO BURNY".
The only reason I thought to actually register Ballyhoo Burny as a Trademark was for some sort of protection, for what it was worth, knowing that the Chinese (the country where I'm planning on manufacturing my products) are known to have a penchant for copying copyright designs and producing substandard products to sell cheaply for their own financial gain.
Anyway, I had to go through long lists, choosing the products I would I would like to produce under the Ballyhoo Burny trademark and would be charged accordingly.
I was wanting to protect both the name and image (which
in hindsight, the Burny image is already copyrighted to me
anyway) and so I included a fridge magnet design of mine
as it included the name, the font I use for the name(not that
that's considered important for TMs), the image of Burny
and my signature.
I duly paid my $172.50 application fee and then got on with business.
On the 11th December, I received an email from the NZ Intellectual Property Office telling me that there had been no objections raised to my application and the Trademark had been accepted. BUT..... the trademark was the picture of my fridge magnet, including my name! I was up in arms and called them immediately, but just like many government offices, they weren't helpful at all and said if I wasn't happy, I could still withdraw my application, which would mean the $172.50 was spent in vain!
People who know me know, that I'll always search for a positive in any negative, so I kept the trademark as is because, it still covered the name "Ballyhoo Burny" but also included Burny's look, his colours, the background blue (which is very much part of the overall Ballyhoo Burny project). It seems odd that my name is included in the TM, because personal names are apparently not allowed to be trademarked, but what the heck, the name Ballyhoo Burny is still covered & protected as a registered TM of sorts and I can still apply at a later date of my choosing to reapply to register just the name as a TM as I do own it anyway!
What a palaver.....but kind of typical of me, lol! So that's how I registered Ballyhoo Burny as a TM!
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