Brandon M. Selinsky

Brandon M. Selinsky

  • Trademarks, Social Security Disability
  • Colorado, Michigan
Badges
Claimed Lawyer ProfileQ&A
Speaking Engagements
Trademark and Label Art: Errors to Avoid, Craft Beer Professionals - Spring Virtual Conference, https://www.craftbeerprofessionals.org/virtual-conference
Craft Beer Professionals
I will talk about what to do with trademarks and, as importantly, what not to do.
Professional Associations
Colorado Brewers Guild
Allied Trade Member
Current
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Brewers Association
Allied Trade Member
Current
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Denver Commission for People With Disabilities
Commissioner
- Current
Activities: Chairperson 2020-2022
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Michigan State Bar  # P66845
- Current
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Jurisdictions Admitted to Practice
Colorado
Colorado Supreme Court
ID Number: 37155
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Michigan
State Bar of Michigan
ID Number: P66845
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Practice Areas
    Trademarks
    Trademark Litigation, Trademark Registration
    Social Security Disability
Additional Practice Area
  • Beer Law
Legal Answers
Q. I am about to start a new tabletop rpg game. Do I need to register a company or trademark it is enough?
A: In addition to what John said, you should consider copyright protection. A copyright protects "original works of authorship," i.e., books, sculptures, drawings, etc. The "original" requirement means it must be your work and include a minimum level of creativity (phone books don't qualify). The work also has to exist in a "tangible medium," i.e., not just in your head. You will have an enforceable copyright as soon as you create your work, assuming it qualifies as I have loosely outlined above. You do not need to register it anywhere. However, like trademarks, you get much better protection for your work if you do register it in the federal system. Registering a federal copyright is fairly light lifting--you can likely manage it yourself and it's inexpensive. But feel free to reach out if you have questions.
Q. Can I use the name if I have something I would like to sell on ebay that resembles the symbol?
A: I could give you a better answer if I had some additional information. For now, I will assume that the thing you are selling on eBay is the product of another company. For the sake of discussion, I will assume that company is Nike. If you are selling something with the Nike Swoosh on it, you cannot sell it under the name "Nike." Doing so would be a violation of Nike's trademark and would get you some swift and unwanted attention from their attorneys. If, on the other hand, you are selling a product that is simply in the shape of the symbol you want to use, and your question is whether you can sell it under the name of that shape, then the answer is 'yes' unless doing so would infringe someone else's mark or would otherwise be prohibited. That is true for any name under which you are selling products: you can use it unless there is a reason why you cannot. The name does not have to be connected to the shape of your product, but it could be. For example, if the product is in the shape of the Greek letter 'omega,' and you want to use 'Omega' as your seller name, you can, as long as 'Omega' is available as a seller name and, again, not already in use for a similar product by someone else.
Q. Can I use a quote or phrase that has a 606 trademark status as of 2016?
A: A "606 status" means the PTO has deemed the application "abandoned" for failing to file a statement of use ("SOU"). The need for an SOU arises when the application is filed as "intent to use," meaning the applicant is not currently using the mark in commerce but the applicant has a good-faith intention of using it soon. If the PTO provisionally approves the application, an SOU (or an extension) must be filed within a certain amount of time. Failing that, the application becomes abandoned. The answer to your question depends on a number of factors. First of all, just because that particular application failed does not mean the applicant--or someone else--is not using the mark in commerce now. A registration is not required to use a trademark, and an unregistered trademark is enforceable against infringers. So if you are going to use a word, phrase, or logo to sell goods/services, you should do a thorough search first to make sure it is available. If another business is using the same or similar mark in the same or similar industry, you could be inviting trouble by using it. If you are using a phrase in a design, then it depends on what you are using the design for. If it is for a logo for a business, then you want to clear the phrase by doing the search I identified in the above paragraph. If you are using for art, then it depends on what you are doing with the art but you are less likely to encounter a problem.
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Contact & Map
Whitcomb, Selinsky PC
2000 S Colorado Blvd
Ste. 9500, Tower 1
Denver, CO 80222
Telephone: (303) 534-1958
Fax: (303) 534-1949
Monday: 8:30 AM - 5 AM (Today)
Tuesday: 8:30 AM - 5 AM
Wednesday: 8:30 AM - 5 AM
Thursday: 8:30 AM - 5 AM
Friday: 8:30 AM - 5 AM
Saturday: Closed
Sunday: Closed