Thursday, 22 September 2011 09:54
The slogan's restriction to one company has a devastating effect on UK firms, says trade mark company.
The trade mark on the British phrase 'Keep Calm and Carry On' is being challenged as it has had a devastating effect on many UK businesses which produce memorabilia bearing the slogan, according to Trade Mark Direct.
The EU Community Trade Mark was granted in March 2011 and restricts the use of 'Keep Calm and Carry On', which was first used by the British Government in 1939 when Britain was facing a possible invasion, to one company, who are able to use the slogan for clothing, mugs, posters and other memorabilia.
Mark Kingsley-Williams, Director of trade mark company Trade Mark Direct, says: "'Keep Calm and Carry On' is part of Britain’s heritage and should never have been trade marked in the first place. Seeing hundreds of trade mark applications each month we're certain this one would have been rejected for a UK trade mark by the Government's Intellectual Property Office.
"Prior to the trade mark being registered many businesses used 'Keep Calm and Carry On' as decoration on a wide variety of goods, which means that it is highly unlikely that the public would associate the phrase with any particular business or recognise it as an indication of origin for any of the goods in the trade mark registration."
The trade mark company has started proceedings with the EU to have the trade mark cancelled. It is expected that the case will take between four to six months to reach a conclusion.
"We have no doubt that fairness and common sense will prevail. We are fighting this at our own cost as we believe strongly that this historic emblem of British resolve in adversity should be free for all businesses to use with no one firm monopolising it unfairly," Kingsley-Williams concludes.
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