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Recently, Jersey Shore cast members have suffered some trademark grenades. In August, Snooki attempted to register her nickname for use on the books, but the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) refused to register “Snooki” due to a likelihood of confusion with the cartoon cat “Snooky” from the children’s book, Adventures of Snooky; Under the Sea.
Mike Sorrentino, better known as “The Situation,” is undergoing his own trademark battle. Earlier, he attempted to trademark his nickname for use on clothing. However, the USPTO office denied his application. According to the Lanham Act, a trademark should not be registered if it “so resembles a mark registered in the Patent and Trademark Office . . . as to be likely when used or in connection with goods or the application, to cause confusion, or to cause mistake, or to deceive.” Registration was denied because of a likelihood of confusion with a Memphis clothing retailer who had trademarked “Situation.” Portions of Sorrentino’s appeal can be seen here. The Situation’s troubles continued as someone else trademarked his last name, “Sorrentino” for a clothing line last week. However, as personal names face more hurdles with regards to trademark protection, this might not inhibit The Situation from using his last name for a clothing business.
Surely The Situation will not let his trademark troubles keep him down, and he will still find plenty of time to G.T.L. In the meantime, be sure to catch the newest episode of Jersey Shore tonight.
– Jenn Weizenecker
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