20 June 2017Trademarks

Mattel takes aim in Barbie tanning TM opposition

Toy maker Mattel has filed a trademark opposition notice at the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board over the mark ‘ Bronzed Barbie’.

Texas-based company Bronzed Barbie filed an application for the mark in November last year to cover international class 44 (airbrush skin tanning services for humans for cosmetic purposes).

‘Bronzed Barbie’ was published in April 2017, and Mattel filed its opposition on June 12 on the following grounds: priority and likelihood of confusion, dilution by blurring, and dilution by tarnishment.

According to the opposition, Mattel first used ‘Barbie’ as a trademark in connection with dolls as early as 1959.

Since then, the company has used the mark, and variations of it such as ‘Barbie Life’, for a broad range of goods and services, including t-shirts, hair brushes and books.

“During the first year, approximately 300,000 ‘Barbie’ dolls were sold. Since then, Mattel has introduced several thousand different ‘Barbie’ items and has sold more than two billion ‘Barbie’ dolls and ‘Barbie’-branded accessories,” said the opposition.

Mattel also claimed that Bronzed Barbie is using additional indicia on its website to suggest a connection with the brand.

The registration of ‘Bronzed Barbie’ will “dilute the distinctive quality and harm the reputation” of Mattel, said the toy company.

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