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Old Feb 08, 2006, 09:18 PM
2dogrc's Avatar
WHere Flight Was Born, North Carolina
Joined Apr 2005
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Tower Hobbies scared by 2 little dogs and a TP 21

Hey Guys,

You will not believe what I got from fed-ex today. I got a Trademark infringement letter from a lawyer representing Tower Hobbies. They seem to think that calling a TowerPro motor by its name is an infringement on the "Tower Hobbies" trademark...even though they don't carry the TowerPro motor.

I was wondering if anybody else has received one of these letters..or if there are any lawyers that would like to input here? I have a few weeks before I have to "comply". I was also thinking about renaming everything on my website to Tower Servo, Tower Dualsky, Tower 3.5 mm bullet connectors...

I will scan the letter in later so all can read!

What do you guys think about this?

2dogrc..the Violater!
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Old Feb 08, 2006, 10:25 PM
Seeing the Farside.
Blaze.45's Avatar
Seattle WA, USA
Joined Aug 2005
4,285 Posts
lol! this is great stuff.

Reminds me of the time when Spike Lee tried to sue the creators of Spike TV... hahahha. (He lost. Horribly)

Or how Texas A&M tries to claim the phrase "The 12th Man" away from the Seahawks... lol, too funny. If anything, Paul Allen will just BUY the number 12. Then what?

Tower Hobbies doesn't own the TowerPro trademark/corporation do they?

-Chris
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Old Feb 08, 2006, 10:58 PM
Flying motor mount master
fly_boy99's Avatar
San Jose, California, United States
Joined Oct 2004
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Well there's more $$$ spent legally then need be I'd say...

Btw, What do you call a lawyer gone bad??
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A Senator!!!

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Old Feb 08, 2006, 11:02 PM
2dogrc's Avatar
WHere Flight Was Born, North Carolina
Joined Apr 2005
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Nice one!

I wonder if lawyers take TowerPro 21's as payment? 1 hour equals 10 motors? SOund close?
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Old Feb 09, 2006, 12:00 AM
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icrashrc's Avatar
Indiana
Joined Jul 2003
1,064 Posts
Eiffel tower
Tower of Power
Sears tower
cell phone tower
Tower Records
Tower Bridge
radio tower


WOW! tower hobbies better hire more lawyers!
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Old Feb 09, 2006, 12:35 AM
KC5UH transmits -------->
ham2405's Avatar
Arlington, Texas
Joined Aug 2002
678 Posts
I'd sure like to see that letter. Do they acuse you of labeling the motor yourself??? I'd shoot back with the fact that 'TowerPro' is a name not only on motors, but also ESCs and servos AND that you are a reseller, not a manufacturer.

I'm going to PM you with some info.

David
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Old Feb 09, 2006, 12:58 AM
2dogrc's Avatar
WHere Flight Was Born, North Carolina
Joined Apr 2005
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I will have the letter scaned in tommorow..I have to do some other work tonight.

Control Tower...
Leaning Tower of Piza..
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Old Feb 09, 2006, 01:09 AM
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Joined Mar 2004
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Sorry to say, but they are likely right. Trademark law is on their side. In fact, they have to defend against dilution of trademark or lose it. Do you own "TowerPro"?

BTW, try calling your new glo-fuel "ExxonPro" and see how long it takes for FedEx to stop by.
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Old Feb 09, 2006, 01:31 AM
Flying motor mount master
fly_boy99's Avatar
San Jose, California, United States
Joined Oct 2004
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I wonder if balsapr.com got this letter a long time ago and hence used the name BP12 and BP21 instead of Towerpro or TP12, etc.

Well there is always 2dogrc-12 and 2dogrc-21... heh

Add Tower of Power to your list...
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Old Feb 09, 2006, 05:35 AM
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The Netherlands, Utrecht, Amersfoort
Joined Oct 2004
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If Tower Pro (or TowerPro) is registered as a trademark of some kind, this information should be available at United States Patent and Trademark Office home page.

I did a search for both Tower Pro and TowerPro:
- TowerPro didn't give any results
- Tower Pro gave 3 results (protower, pro swedens series tretorn and Tower Pro)

The 1st two 'word marks' (as they call it on the website) are not of interest in this case. The 3rd is since that is what this topic is about. I am not an expert in this area, but I think the good news is that this 'word mark' is mentioned as dead. Current status is: Registration canceled under Section 8.

See this for detailed information about 'Tower Pro':
http://tarr.uspto.gov/servlet/tarr?r...entry=73511309

I hope this helps, but Iam sure some expert can give more information.

CD
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Old Feb 09, 2006, 08:22 AM
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Boston, MA subburb
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When I first saw the name TowerPro wrt. motors in the RCGroups (i.e. in the context of RC model airplanes), I associated them with Tower Hobby and looked on their web site for that motor. I think they have a point.

Also from what I have read, the applicability of trademarks can be rather loose - i.e. they don't have to register (all) variations (unlike patent law).

[shields up ]
Alan
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Last edited by Al Offt; Feb 09, 2006 at 10:18 AM. Reason: correct typos
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Old Feb 09, 2006, 09:05 AM
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You are correct Alan. TowerPro is likely seen as a dilution of Tower's trademark rights.
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Old Feb 09, 2006, 09:21 AM
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Auburn Ga.
Joined Feb 2004
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I think they have a lot of letter's to send out, There are hundreds of people selling Tower Pro products and use the name on there web sites.
I bet you will find out that yes they can hold the name Tower Hobbies, But not Hobbies alone or Tower alone.

Milton
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Old Feb 09, 2006, 10:35 AM
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Here's the definitive test on dilution:

The Polaroid Test for Infringement

Trademark infringement liability under §43(a) attaches when the owner of the trademark has shown that ordinary consumers are likely to be confused as to the origin or affiliation of the defendant's goods or services. (Hall at 460). This "likelihood of confusion" is established by a balancing test, known as the Polaroid test, consisting of several factors including, but not limited to:

1) The strength of the trademark;

2) the degree of similarity between the two marks;

3) the geographic and market proximity of the products;

4) the likelihood the prior owner may one day enter the market of the subsequent owner;

5) actual consumer confusion;

6) the defendant's bad faith in adopting the mark;

7) the quality of the defendant's product; and

8) the sophistication of the buyers.

-- Polaroid Corp. v. Polared Electronics Corp., 287 F.2d 492, 495 (2nd Cir. 1961)


2DogRC et al lose. Sorry.
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Old Feb 09, 2006, 10:59 AM
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East Anglia, UK
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rutat
Here's the definitive test on dilution:

The Polaroid Test for Infringement

Trademark infringement liability under §43(a) attaches when the owner of the trademark has shown that ordinary consumers are likely to be confused as to the origin or affiliation of the defendant's goods or services. (Hall at 460). This "likelihood of confusion" is established by a balancing test, known as the Polaroid test, consisting of several factors including, but not limited to:

1) The strength of the trademark;
weak.
Quote:
2) the degree of similarity between the two marks;
Arguable.
Quote:

3) the geographic and market proximity of the products;

closer.
Quote:
4) the likelihood the prior owner may one day enter the market of the subsequent owner;
good -he is there already.
Quote:
5) actual consumer confusion;
debatable
Quote:
6) the defendant's bad faith in adopting the mark;
In the case of a reseller, none I would say.
Quote:

7) the quality of the defendant's product; and
Total rubbish in both cases.
Quote:
8) the sophistication of the buyers.
Iwanna big bruffless mo'ah, pliz.
Quote:

-- Polaroid Corp. v. Polared Electronics Corp., 287 F.2d 492, 495 (2nd Cir. 1961)


2DogRC et al lose. Sorry.
Arguable. Expensively arguable.
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