Getting Cocky:Trademarking Romance Titles:

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mrsmig

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It's a slippery slope, all right. I was wondering what would happen if some horror writer decided to follow suit and trademark "Shadows," or a YA writer trademarked "Teen" or a fantasy writer trademarked...oh, let's just say "Stone," okay? :evil
 

Twick

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Hey, why not go big and trademark "the" as your own personal intellectual property?
 

lizmonster

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It's a slippery slope, all right. I was wondering what would happen if some horror writer decided to follow suit and trademark "Shadows," or a YA writer trademarked "Teen" or a fantasy writer trademarked...oh, let's just say "Stone," okay? :evil

You gotta think bigger. I'm going to trademark "of".
 

SepiaAndDust

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That's one big dawg you have there - - Go for the lot - all the vowels! :snoopy:

Ran a message board once, and for April Fools, I added all the vowels to the potty filter.

Your post would have come up as "Tht's n bg dwg y hv thr - - G fr th lt - ll th vwls!"

Panic! Chaos! I left it on all day.

Wouldn't work today--it's just a different dialect of txtspeak.
 
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Cobalt Jade

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That said, I continue to be really, really curious about the fact that she's sending the C&D's. I think it's pretty clear from that blog UG linked that she did have a good IP lawyer help her with this, and I know for a fact that $700/hr for an IP attorney is Seattle dollar-level. NY and SF/Silicon Valley IP attorneys would charge double that. She's either got a lawyer who did this for a deep discount or she'd got a lot of money invested already.

The lawyer may be working for free -- a friend or a relative, or even a student at the UW. Probably why she's going about this half-assedly.
 

ULTRAGOTHA

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Ran a message board once, and for April Fools, I added all the vowels to the potty filter.

Your post would have come up as "Tht's n bg dwg y hv thr - - G fr th lt - ll th vwls!"

Panic! Chaos! I left it on all day.

Wouldn't work today--it's just a different dialect of txtspeak.

Disemvoweling is one of my favorite moderation techniques.
 

BenPanced

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I used to work in software, and I was often shocked by what the USPTO would allow to be patented. Nice to see they're equally short-sighted about trademarks.

This is silly enough that I have to believe it'll be overturned, but in the meantime she's going to screw up a lot of people's livelihoods.

A production company claims to have trademarked the phrase "book trailer" but with the sheer number of authors and other companies using the term out in the wild, I haven't seen or heard anything about anybody getting served to protect the mark.
 
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tiddlywinks

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RE: RWA. They are taking information from both members and non-members (per their tweet). It is 100% in the interest of RWA's members to try to overturn this trademark, even if no RWA member received a C&D. If Hopkins shared her trademark with Amazon--and I'm certain she must have--THEY will flag any book with "cocky" in the title and not put it up. If they've been notified of a trademark, they can't knowingly sell a product in violation.

Even bigger from RWA's perspective is that if Hopkins wins this, a precedent is set and you can bet other unscrupulous people will go after even more critical words. Imagine Duke, Billionaire, Secret Baby getting trademarked and it becomes clear why they have to fight no matter who is directly affected right now.

...and it's already begun. Indie writer Tara Crescent has already had HER Cocky book series pulled from Amazon (no C&D letter sent) see @TaraCrescent Twitter feed for the note - I can't get my link to work here, sorry guys. She even has posted the email from Amazon which is pretty "yikes!". FH went straight to Amazon on that one with an IP trademark infringement. Burden of proof is now on Ms. Crescent; meanwhile, she loses out on sales while her product is off Amazon's shelves. I'm pretty sure she's not the only one either - I thought I'd seen mention of a few other authors having this happen, but I couldn't find the proof yesterday.
(ETA: found Claire Kingsley as another Amazon takedown author.)
:(

As Elaine said above, this is a critical fight for RWA, as this sets an alarming precedent. While the word trademark is technically for a series, that's not going to stop C&D or Amazon takedowns for "potential brand confusion" single titles could arguably cause, even if they aren't part of a Cocky series of their own.
 
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mrsmig

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Wow - not even a "heads up, here it comes."
 

tiddlywinks

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No kidding. And the email Ms. Crescent posted is nasty business - not only that she needs to demonstrate proof that she had prior rights to said trademark before using it, but also strong suggestion that she should pay FH for any $$ received from her infringing work.

This went from popcorn drama to what I would expect to be some future lawsuits from writers impacted by this hopefully "when" the TM is overturned. And Amazon's immediate takedown approach is yet another reason RWA needs to get this behavior nipped in the bud before other folks get 'bright ideas' from this.
 

Cobalt Jade

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I can't help laughing at the whole thing because in my family "cocky" was the slang for baby poop. As in, "Do you have to go cocky?"
 

Laurasaurus

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She's just done a live video on her author FB page. Calling everyone sick bastard money grabbers who need to back the fuck off and stop piggy backing her success. Yikes. Talk about doubling down.

And I could only be bothered to watch the first minute. It's an hour and 40 minutes long.
 

BenPanced

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Out of the 1,799 comments that were posted on that video at the time I tried to watch, there was only one supporting her. ONE.

Plus the story's reached international proportions, appearing in the Guardian. And on Cracked.
 

ElaineA

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RWA tweeted that they've stepped in with Amazon about their removals.
We have contacted Amazon to provide them with detailed info on this matter and have asked if they will pause further removals/suspensions on books w/ titles containing "cocky" while this is being contested. We will provide more updates as possible when we receive their response.https://twitter.com/romancewriters/status/993883786931777536
 

Old Hack

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Good grief. Just when you think that things can't get any more ridiculous. I can't watch the video--I have limited bandwidth here--but what was she thinking?
 

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