‘Hulu’ was officially trade marked in Australia this week

Hulu1After initially registering for an Australian trade mark in July last year, Hulu was accepted and officially entered the trade mark register in Australia this week.

The trade mark protection could be a step closer to the leading US video-streaming service making an entry into the Australian market. The company already owns the Hulu.com.au domain, which currently redirects to Hulu.com, and states on its website that it is “committed to making its content available worldwide” but “must work through a number of legal and business issues” first.

The ‘HULU’ trade mark entered the Australian trade mark register on February 20, and covers everything from video-streaming to calendars.

A summary of the classes covered by the trade mark can be found on the original ™Watch article from July last year.

The application was lodged by the Santa Monica office of ‘Hulu, LLC’ and a Sydney-based legal representative, Davies Collison Cave.

Click to view a screenshot of Hulu’s Australian trade mark.

H/T @aafuss
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Winter is punning: Southern Cross Austereo lodges for ‘Game Of Phones’

suterhcrossAustralian radio group Southern Cross Austereo has lodged an Australian trade mark for the term ‘Game Of Phones’.

The phone-related trade mark comes less than a year after the company was embroiled in a prank call controversy. Last December, SCA-owned Sydney station 2Day FM aired a prank call to a London hospital that was treating Kate Middleton. Less than a week later, nurse Jacintha Saldanha, who took the call, committed suicide.

The new ‘Game Of Phones’ trade mark, registered on 29 July, was lodged by Southern Cross Austereo and a legal representative, Holding Redlich.

It is lodged under Class 38, covering “broadcast of radio programmes” and “radio broadcasting”.

HBO already holds the registered Australian trade mark for ‘Game Of Thrones’, which was first lodged back in 2010. It, however, does not cover any specific radio classes, although some of the classes it does cover include “transmission or reproduction of sound or images” and “downloadable pre-recorded audio files”.

A Google search doesn’t appear to find any relevant Australian websites with a service or product called ‘Game Of Phones’. A couple more related searches (adding ‘radio‘ and ‘Southern Cross Austereo‘ to the term) also do not appear to bring up anything relevant.

The trade mark application is at the early status of ‘Indexing Approving’, meaning it has not been seen by an IP examiner yet.

Click to view a screenshot of Southern Cross Austereo’s ‘Game Of Phones’ trade mark application.

US video services Hulu and Vdio lodge Australian trade marks

Hulu1The range of streaming video services in Australia may be on the verge of increasing, if two newly-lodged local trade marks are anything to go by.

Massive US streaming service Hulu and Rdio video streaming offshoot Vdio both lodged trade mark applications in Australia on 18 July and 16 July respectively.

TV and movie streaming leader Netflix already holds an Australian trade mark for its logo, entering the register in October last year.

Whilst Vdio is broadly lodging its trade mark under digital and entertainment classes, Hulu is going the whole hog and lodging under various souvenir classes too.

A summary of the classes Hulu is filing for:

Class 9: Recordable and pre-recorded media; digital media, namely, streaming or downloadable audio-visual content in the fields of news, entertainment, sports, comedy, drama, music, and music videos; computer software, namely, downloadable players for audio-visual content

Class 16: Address books; appointment books; pens; binders; bookmarks; books; magazines, bumper stickers; calendars; stationery; gift cards; posters

Class 18:  All purpose sport bags; athletic bags; backpacks; umbrellas

Class 28: Action skill games; arcade games; board games; card games; balls; balloons; video games;

Class 35: Business-to-business advertising; online banner advertising and marketing services; online retail services featuring streaming or downloadable audio-visual content in the fields of news, entertainment, sports, comedy, drama, music, and music videos

Class 38: Broadcasting and streaming of audio-visual content in the fields of news, entertainment, sports, comedy, drama, music, and music videos via a global computer network; transmission of downloadable audio-visual content in the nature of full-length, partial-length, and clips from motion pictures, television programming, videos, music videos, and music; transmission of video and interactive games; podcasting and webcasting services

Class 41: Education and entertainment services, namely online services providing audio-visual content in the fields of news, entertainment, sports, comedy, drama, music, and music videos; providing interactive online games

Class 42: Computer services, namely, hosting a website featuring audio-visual content in the fields of news, entertainment, sports, comedy, drama, music, and music videos

Whereas Vdio’s classes are much more straightforward. A summary:

Class 9: Computer software for use in downloading and streaming audio and audiovisual materials via the Internet, mobile devices, wireless internet networks and other computer and electronic communication networks

Class 35: Retail store services in the field of entertainment featuring pre-recorded audiovisual works and related merchandise, provided via the Internet, mobile devices, wireless internet networks and other computer and electronic communication networks

Class 38: Streaming of audiovisual materials over the Internet, mobile devices, wireless internet networks and other computer and electronic communication networks; subscription television broadcasting via the Internet, mobile devices, wireless internet networks and other computer and electronic communication networks

Class 41: Providing a subscription based entertainment website featuring television programming and films

Class 42: Providing a website allowing users to download music and audiovisual materials; providing temporary use of online non-downloadable software that enables users to play and program music and entertainment-related materials

Hulu’s trade mark application was lodged by the Santa Monica office of ‘Hulu, LLC’ and a Sydney-based legal representative, Davies Collison Cave. The company holds another local trade mark for its name from 2008.

Vdio’s application was lodged by the San Francisco office of ‘Vdio, Inc’ and a Canberra-based legal representative, AJ Park. 

Both trade mark applications are at the early status of ‘Indexing Approved’.

Click to view a screenshot of the trade applications for Hulu and Vdio.

South Australian wine company lodges for ‘Mad Men’

mad-men_-s04e02-720p-hdtv_-x264-immerseIngleburne Wine Company has this week lodged an Australian trade mark application for the term ‘Mad Men’.

Based in the McLaren Vale in South Australia, Ingleburne Wine Company is best known for its Penny’s Hill winery, which has apparently “established a fine reputation”.

The trade mark application – TM number 1565845 – was lodged on June 1, and is lodged under class 33 covering not just “Wine” but also “Spirits (beverages)” and “Liqueurs”.

The popular Mad Men TV show, currently airing on the AMC network in the US and on SBS and Showcase in Australia, is well-known for characters constantly drinking various alcoholic beverages.

Main character Don Draper is most often seen drinking Canadian Club whisky and old-fashioned cocktails. However, a study of all the drinks featured on the show reveals 340 wines consumed versus 398 whisky drinks, 382 cocktails and just 57 beers.

Therefore a spirit or wine featuring Mad Men branding makes sense compared to the recent launches of beers featuring Game Of Thrones, Breaking Bad and The Simpsons branding.

™Watch has contacted Ingleburne Wine Company and is awaiting a response.

The trade mark application is at the early status of ‘Filed – Approved’.

Take a look at a screenshot of Ingleburne’s ‘Mad Men’ trade mark application.

¡Ay, caramba! Twentieth Century Fox applies for alcoholic Duff Beer

duff1After decades of filing countless lawsuits against unofficial varieties of ‘Duff Beer’, Twentieth Century Fox has finally decided to lodge an Australian trade mark for the fictional beer brand which covers real alcoholic beer.

Made famous as the popular beer consumed on TV show The Simpsons, studio Twentieth Century Fox has always backed away from lodging a trade mark for the brand covering alcoholic beverages. It has also historically reacted fast to any brewery company attempting to produce a real Duff Beer. This steadfast stand seems to be spurred by The Simpsons creator Matt Groening, who has been against producing an alcoholic Duff Beer “because it would encourage kids to drink”.

However, just this month that attitude may have changed, with a new Simpsons theme park in the US starting to serve a real alcoholic Duff Beer. The lodgement of an Australian trade mark could suggest this officially endorsed alcoholic Duff Beer could make its way Down Under some time in the future.

Twentieth Century Fox already holds Australian trade marks for the Duff Beer logo from 1999, covering various souvenir items, such as posters, calendars and drinking glasses. It also held a lapsed Australian trade mark for the Duff Beer logo lodged in the same year, covering non-alcoholic soft drinks.

The new trade mark application for the term ‘Duff Beer’ – TM number 1562201 – was lodged this week, on 12 June, and specifically covers:

Class: 32 Beers and ales; non-alcoholic beers; lagers; stouts and porters

Twentieth Century Fox could be looking to further its protection of the trade mark, rather than produce an alcoholic Duff Beer in Australia.

Just last year, a West Australian liquor wholesaler found itself in legal trouble with Twentieth Century Fox after selling the German imported ‘Legendary Duff Beer’. The studio also fought off Australian beverage and food company Lion Nathan in 1996, when it produced a beer called ‘Duff’ and also lodged (and ultimately withdrew) a trade mark for ‘Duff Beer’ covering alcoholic goods.

There has been many more international attempts to brew a real Duff Beer, most of which are promptly shot down by legal action from Fox.

For example, the German firm ‘Duff Beer UG’ has fought numerous battles to continue selling the previously mentioned ‘Legendary Duff Beer’ across Europe. For instance, it lodged for a European-wide trade mark for ‘Duff Beer’, which was successfully opposed by Twentieth Century Fox. Duff Beer UG is appealing to the European Court Of Justice to get that opposition overturned. Duff Beer UG and a rival German brewery have also spent numerous years in a legal spat to be the sole owner of the Duff trade mark in Germany.

Only three months ago, Chilean police seized 60,000 Duff-branded beer bottles following an intellectual property complaint from, you guessed it, Twentieth Century Fox.

All these legal crackdowns have made unofficial Duff Beer a collector’s item, especially in Australia. For instance, an empty carton for the 1996 Nathan Lion ‘Duff’ beer is currently on eBay Australia for $89, and an empty six-pack of ‘Legendary Duff Beer’ is on eBay Australia for $40.

The new Australian trade mark application was lodged by Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation and an Australian legal representative, Baker & McKenzie.

Click to view a screenshot of the new alcoholic Duff Beer trade mark application. Also take a look at the lapsed non-alcoholic and the still active souvenir Duff Beer trade mark applications from 1999.

‘World’s Next Top Model’ refused Australian trade mark

next top modelA Turkish applicant has had its Australian trade mark application for ‘World’s Next Top Model’ refused, after opposition from America’s Next Top Model production company Pottle Productions.

As reported by Clarity Trade Marks, Istanbul-based ‘Rute Ithalat Ve Ihracat Anonim Sireti’ attempted to trade mark the logo for a global Next Top Model (pictured), under classes 35 and 38 covering advertising and telecommunications services.

Sireti first lodged the trade mark in February 2010, and the eventual refusal after opposition by Pottle Productions was finalised on March 14 this year.

The classes the trade mark was attempting to cover, in full, were:

Class 35: Advertising, marketing studies, public relations and related services, organization of exhibitions for commercial or advertising purposes and organization of trade fairs for commercial or advertising purposes; office services; business management and organization consultancy, business management assistance

Class 38: Telecommunications

Pottle Productions has produced America’s Next Top Model since 2003.

Click to view a screenshot of the refused ‘World’s Next Top Model’ trade mark application.

UPDATED: MTV lodges trade mark for ‘MTV 82’

MTV1Viacom International, the owners of pop culture channel MTV, has applied for an Australian trade mark of a mysterious new brand, ‘MTV 82’.

Filed last week, the logo (pictured) does not seem to appear publicly anywhere else on the internet, according to a reverse Google Image Search. A search for “MTV 82” does not bring up anything relevant either.

The trade mark application – TM number 1554087 – is currently at the status of ‘Indexing Approved’, and is lodged under Class 41 of a range of entertainment services, namely:

Educational, teaching and training, entertainment, sporting and cultural services, including production of radio and television programs; production of films and live entertainment features; production of animated motion pictures and television features; services relating to cinema and television studios; services relating to motion picture entertainment, television entertainment and to live entertainment performances and shows, publication of books, magazines and periodicals; providing information on the applicant’s television programming services to multiple users via the world wide web or the internet or other on-line databases; production of dance shows, music shows and video award shows; comedy shows, game shows and sports events before live audiences which are broadcast live or taped for later broadcast; live musical concerts; tv news shows; organizing talent contests and music and television award events; organizing and presenting displays of entertainment relating to style and fashion; providing information in the field of entertainment by means of a global computer network

The application was lodged by a Viacom legal representative in Australia, Griffith Hack.

UPDATE: An MTV Australia spokesperson confirmed to ™Watch that there is an upcoming ‘MTV 82’, and that a formal announcement will be made “in the next couple of weeks”.

View a screenshot of the ‘MTV 82’ trade mark application.