Netflix’s Qwikster Quickly Stirs Up Competition

On Monday, September 19, 2011 Netflix Inc. applied for trademark protection on the name and logo of their new company, Qwikster. The applications were filed in three service categories: Class 35 Retail services namely “online retail store services; computerized on-line retail services featuring films, movies, motion pictures, video recordings, pre-recorded videotapes, digital video disks, digital versatile discs (or DVDs), Blu-ray discs, videotape cassettes, audio recordings, multimedia recordings and games”; Class 38 Telecommunications services namely “video-on-demand transmission services; video broadcasting; transmission of voice, data, images, signals, messages and information; video and audio streaming services via electronic communications networks”; and Class 41 Education and Entertainment services namely “rental of films, movies, motion pictures, video recordings, pre-recorded videotapes, digital video disks, digital versatile discs (or DVDs), Blu-ray discs, videotape cassettes, audio recordings, multimedia recordings and games in a variety of genres; providing information, reviews and personalized recommendations in the fields of entertainment and education; providing information, reviews and personalized recommendations in the fields of entertainment and education by means of electronic communications networks”.
A trademark application for the same name “Qwikster” was filed on September 20th, 2011 by Manhattan Entrepreneurs Group LLC of New York. This application was also filed in Class 38 and Class 41, as well as Class 25 for Clothing namely “Caps; Gloves; Hosiery; Jackets; Pants; Scarves; Shirts; Shorts; Slippers; Sweat pants; Sweat shirts; Sweaters; T-shirts; Ties; Visors”.
What is interesting to note, is the description that both companies put down on the application for Class 38 are nearly identical: “video-on-demand transmission services; video broadcasting; transmission of voice, data, images, signals, messages and information”, however Netflix adds on “video and audio streaming services via electronic communications networks”.
Regarding Class 41, below is the Netflix description again with bolded text to indicate where the similarities are with the description for the application filed by Manhattan Entrepreneurs Group:
rental of films, movies, motion pictures, video recordingspre-recorded videotapesdigital video disks, digital versatile discs (or DVDs), Blu-ray discs, videotape cassettes, audio recordings, multimedia recordings and games in a variety of genres; providing information, reviews and personalized recommendations in the fields of entertainment and education; providing information, reviews and personalized recommendations in the fieldof entertainment and education by means of electronic communications networks
Here is the description from Qwikster application by Manhattan Entrepreneurs Group in the category of Class 41 Education and Entertainment:
“Rental of video recordings, pre-recorded videotapes, digital video disks, multimedia recordings, a rental of video recordings, pre-recorded videotapes, digital video disks, by means of communications networks; providing information, reviews and personalized recommendations in the field of entertainment; providing information, reviews and personalized recommendations in the field of entertainment by means of communications networks”.
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