Jay Z and Beyonce are trying to trademark the name Blue Ivy for their child of the same name, this may be the first baby with their very own trademark. Normally any person cannot go out and trademark their own name but lets look at the viability of Blue Ivy obtaining a trademark of her own name.
A trademark is something that distinguishes goods or services in commerce. In this case a baby is not something that is being bought or sold. If Rocawear wants to start a new brand of baby clothing or start a new enterprise of goods for babies then this would be a good start in trying to obtain trademark protection. As of right now the only goods and or service I have heard using the name Blue Ivy is a strain of Marijuana in the Los Angeles area, and this is entirely a different class of goods then a potential line of baby clothes. Affording trademark protection to a type of marijuana is an entirely different discussion.
Moreover another big concept in trademark law is that a mark has to be distinctive. There are four main types of marks that they are either, arbitrary, fanciful, distinctive, or generic. Under the case for Blue Ivy the best argument is that it is arbitrary, when I think of Blue Ivy I think of a type of plant, before the birth of Blue Ivy I did not associate the term with a person. An example of an arbitrary trademark for example is apple in using it for their technological goods as the word apple does not describe or suggest that the product is for example a computer. In addition, if for some reason it is found that the trademark is generic then you can show that there is a secondary meaning when deciding if a mark is distinctive. Here Blue Ivy is known world wide and there is a good chance that their is secondary meaning that the consumer associates Blue Ivy with Jay Z’s child.
In short their has to be a use for a trademark and a babies name is not a use associated in commerce. However if the business savvy parents can start building a company to protect the Blue Ivy name, and try to ward off future performers from calling themselves Blue Ivy then trademark protection has a chance of becoming a real possibility.
This Blog was written by Seneca Law Group Of Counsel Entertainment lawyer Chase Goodman. Its contents are his sole possession. This Blog is intended for informational purposes and social commentary only. It is not meant to be a legal authority. The laws constantly change and each persons circumstances are different. If you have entertainment law questions or need an attorney please contact Seneca Law Group today at (619 630-8529 or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org