Markenabstand

English translation: difference which must exist between the marks

GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
German term or phrase:erforderlicher Markenabstand
English translation:difference which must exist between the marks
Entered by: Steffen Walter

22:36 Jan 21, 2009
German to English translations [PRO]
Law/Patents - Patents
German term or phrase: Markenabstand
Aus einem Beschluss des dt. Markenamtes:

Die Kennzeichnungskraft der Widerspruchsmarke ist als durchschnittlich zu beurteilen. Die gegenüberstehenden Waren sind in Klasse 9 teilweise identisch und teilweise ähnlich. In welchem Umfang Warenähnlichkeit zu bejahen ist, kann dahingestellt bleiben, weil die jüngere Marke selbst bei Annahme von Warenidentität und den daraus folgenden, überdurchschnittlichen Anforderungen den demnach erforderlichen ***Markenabstand*** zu der Widerspruchsmarke in jeder Hinsicht einhält.

Der Widerspruch wurde gezielt gegen Waren der Klasse 16 eingelegt. Insoweit sind die gegenüberstehenden Waren teilweise identisch, teilweise ähnlich. Ausgehend von einer normalen Kennzeichnungskraft der Widerspruchsmarke sind daher überdurchschnittlich hohe Anforderungen an den ***Markenabstand*** zu stellen. Der demnach erforderliche Abstand wird von der angegriffenen Marke jedoch in jeder Hinsicht eingehalten.

Wie oben unter Ziffer 1 ausgeführt, sind die Marken als Ganzes gegenübergestellt nicht verwechselbar ähnlich, weil durch den zusätzlichen Bestandteil „D“ und den mittigen Punkt auf Seiten der angegriffenen Marke der erforderliche Abstand gewährleistet ist.
ingheck
Local time: 13:14
difference which must exist between the marks
Explanation:
I think it's a more literal distinction.

51. In ihrer Entscheidung, mit der der Widerspruch wegen fehlender Verwechslungsgefahr zurückgewiesen wurde, hat die Widerspruchsabteilung ausgeführt:
„Selbst insoweit sich im vorliegenden Fall identische Waren gegenüberstehen, reichen die bestehenden Unterschiede der Vergleichszeichen aus, um [die Marken] mit noch hinreichender Sicherheit auseinander zu halten. Zwar sind im vorliegenden Fall strenge Maßstäbe an den einzuhaltenden Markenabstand auch deshalb anzulegen, weil es sich bei den betreffenden Vergleichswaren um Waren des täglichen Bedarfs handelt, die erfahrungsgemäß mit einer gewissen Flüchtigkeit und ohne besondere Aufmerksamkeit gegenüber den Warenkennzeichnungen erworben werden.“

http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=CELEX:...

51 In that respect, it should be stated that, in its decision dismissing the opposition on the ground that there was no likelihood of confusion, the Opposition Division stated:
‘Although identical goods are at issue in this case, the differences between the signs which are compared suffice to distinguish [the marks] with enough certainty. Admittedly, strict criteria should be applied in this case as regards the difference which must exist between the marks, in particular because the goods compared are staple goods which, as experience shows, are bought fairly carelessly and without particular attention being paid to the names of the goods.’

http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=CELEX:...



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Note added at 32 mins (2009-01-21 23:08:54 GMT)
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Trademarks, like brands, build in strength over time. The test for trademark infringement is “confusing similarity.” Put another way, if the average consumer believes both products to have come from the same source, there is infringement. Obviously, the more a consumer is familiar with a particular brand, the more defendable its mark. That’s why it behooves a company to do the following:
•choose a distinctive mark, including a “coined” name.

Suggestive marks are the next most protectable. Examples include Coppertone, Duracell, and Lestoil. Even common words can be used as trademarks as long as they are not used descriptively. These common words/phrases are also suggestive marks: Amazon (big), Road Runner (fast) and Apple (different, offbeat). Descriptive marks are not protectable unless the brand creates a secondary meaning for the word. Examples include Weight Watchers, Rollerblade, and Wite-out. Generic marks, such as Shredded Wheat and Super Glue, are not protectable at all.)

http://www.ipfrontline.com/depts/article.asp?id=18283&deptid...
Selected response from:

Kim Metzger
Mexico
Local time: 06:14
Grading comment
Vielen Dank Kim, Alison (auch für die Zusatzinfos) und Paul!
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer



Summary of answers provided
3 +1difference which must exist between the marks
Kim Metzger
3brand differentiation
Paul Cohen
Summary of reference entries provided
In support of Kim's answer
Alison MacG

  

Answers


24 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +1
difference which must exist between the marks


Explanation:
I think it's a more literal distinction.

51. In ihrer Entscheidung, mit der der Widerspruch wegen fehlender Verwechslungsgefahr zurückgewiesen wurde, hat die Widerspruchsabteilung ausgeführt:
„Selbst insoweit sich im vorliegenden Fall identische Waren gegenüberstehen, reichen die bestehenden Unterschiede der Vergleichszeichen aus, um [die Marken] mit noch hinreichender Sicherheit auseinander zu halten. Zwar sind im vorliegenden Fall strenge Maßstäbe an den einzuhaltenden Markenabstand auch deshalb anzulegen, weil es sich bei den betreffenden Vergleichswaren um Waren des täglichen Bedarfs handelt, die erfahrungsgemäß mit einer gewissen Flüchtigkeit und ohne besondere Aufmerksamkeit gegenüber den Warenkennzeichnungen erworben werden.“

http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=CELEX:...

51 In that respect, it should be stated that, in its decision dismissing the opposition on the ground that there was no likelihood of confusion, the Opposition Division stated:
‘Although identical goods are at issue in this case, the differences between the signs which are compared suffice to distinguish [the marks] with enough certainty. Admittedly, strict criteria should be applied in this case as regards the difference which must exist between the marks, in particular because the goods compared are staple goods which, as experience shows, are bought fairly carelessly and without particular attention being paid to the names of the goods.’

http://eur-lex.europa.eu/LexUriServ/LexUriServ.do?uri=CELEX:...



--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 32 mins (2009-01-21 23:08:54 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

Trademarks, like brands, build in strength over time. The test for trademark infringement is “confusing similarity.” Put another way, if the average consumer believes both products to have come from the same source, there is infringement. Obviously, the more a consumer is familiar with a particular brand, the more defendable its mark. That’s why it behooves a company to do the following:
•choose a distinctive mark, including a “coined” name.

Suggestive marks are the next most protectable. Examples include Coppertone, Duracell, and Lestoil. Even common words can be used as trademarks as long as they are not used descriptively. These common words/phrases are also suggestive marks: Amazon (big), Road Runner (fast) and Apple (different, offbeat). Descriptive marks are not protectable unless the brand creates a secondary meaning for the word. Examples include Weight Watchers, Rollerblade, and Wite-out. Generic marks, such as Shredded Wheat and Super Glue, are not protectable at all.)

http://www.ipfrontline.com/depts/article.asp?id=18283&deptid...


Kim Metzger
Mexico
Local time: 06:14
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 39
Grading comment
Vielen Dank Kim, Alison (auch für die Zusatzinfos) und Paul!

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Alison MacG
11 hrs
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

9 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5
brand differentiation


Explanation:
This is a marketing term to describe what differentiates one brand from the competition. Perhaps it would capture the meaning of "Markenabstand" here.

See: http://www.brandingstrategyinsider.com/2006/12/achieving_bra...

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Note added at 14 hrs (2009-01-22 13:32:33 GMT)
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As has been pointed out by writeaway, this has to do with trademarks, not brands. My mistake.

Forget brand differentiation. Perhaps "trademark differentiation"?

In effect, generating the same harm as permitting patents on laws of nature or abstract ideas, see supra notes 143-47 and accompanying text; or "unjustified" trademark differentiation (...)
http://www.mttlr.org/volseven/Chiapetta_notes.html

Paul Cohen
Greenland
Local time: 09:14
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 8

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  writeaway: but this is patentese /for starters, I think this is about trademarks, not brands......
2 hrs
  -> Yes, yes, I know, it's a marketing term, not patentese (which is a language that I don't speak). But at least it's clear and concise. / Ah, good point!

neutral  TonyTK: andere Baustelle
11 hrs
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)




Reference comments


12 hrs
Reference: In support of Kim's answer

Reference information:
Another Community Trade Mark case showing related use of the term (see sections 39 and 40):

It follows, in the applicant’s view, that the conflicting marks display, from the point of view of their graphic and verbal elements, sufficient differences to make them distinctive.
40. Thirdly, the applicant considers that the conflicting signs are sufficiently different on an auditory level since the requested sign will be pronounced ‘vitakraft’ whilst the verbal element of the earlier signs is pronounced ‘krafft’.

Folglich hielten die sich gegenüberstehenden Zeichen aufgrund der grafischen und Wortelemente einen ausreichenden Abstand ein, um sie unterscheiden zu können.
40. Drittens hielten die Zeichen auch klanglich einen ausreichenden Abstand ein, da die angemeldete Marke als „Vitakraft“ vokalisiert werde, während das Wortelement der älteren Marken als „krafft“ ausgesprochen werde.
http://eur-lex.europa.eu/Notice.do?mode=dbl&lang=en&ihmlang=...

Alison MacG
United Kingdom
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 12
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