A trademark of one of America’s most beloved sitcoms is currently the subject of a federal lawsuit. The term ‘Desilu” is currently the basis of a federal lawsuit against a network, more than a half-century after the run of the TV show. As the case has a number of issues involved, it should be an interesting case to watch in the Intellectual Property Law field.
Desilu was at one time the name of a production company for a famous sitcom. The company was sold in the late 1960’s and went through a number of different ownership changes. The issue seems to be whether trademark rights were included in the sale. The defendant network claims it purchased all trademark rights. It has been using the name from time to time over the past several years.
Another issue is that of trademark rights and what happens when they are sold to successor companies, and those rights are subsequently abandoned. One of the original founders of Desilu is attempting to remarket the brand. As such, he filed a trademark registration request. The network did not oppose the request. According to records, the then owner of the company filed multiple trademark applications in the late 1990’s through 2001. The plaintiff claims the rights were then abandoned subsequently.
A trademark is a form of intellectual property law that relates to a title, a phrase, a name or logo. It is something used to identify a product or service. Trademarks are given protected intellectual property status because of their identifying characteristics. Legal protection is afforded one to avoid confusion among purchasers of the product or service. They can be bought and sold as assets. If a business learns a competitor is using its logo or other trademarked property, the first call is normally to an experienced intellectual property attorney.
Source:Courthouse News Service ‘I Love Lucy’ Film Company Sues CBS Over Trademark Infringement Martin Macias Jr. April 9, 2018