The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Google has been working for the past year to register the word “Glass” as a trademark in the United States. The company successfully received a trademark for the “Google Glass” name, but so far, has been unsuccessful to its attempts to trade the single word “Glass.”
According to the report, Google first submitted its application to trademark “Glass” with the classic, futuristic font last year. Shortly thereafter, Google heard back from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and was informed that the word could not be trademarked. One of the reasons cited by the office was that the trademark was too similar to other existing and pending computer software trademarks. This could lead to consumer confusion, according to the examiner.
The trademark examiner also claimed that the word “Glass”, even when written in its classic font, is “merely descriptive.” According to federal law, words that describe a product cannot be trademarked. “Google, like many businesses, takes routine steps to protect and register its trademarks,” a Google spokesman said.
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As a rebuttal to the ruling, Google claimed that the trademark would not lead to any consumer confusion given the fact that Google Glass received an incredible level of publicity since its announcement. The company also said that the word “Glass” is not descriptive for its product, given that “the frame and display components of the Glass device do not consist of glass at all,” but rather are made from titanium and plastic.
Google has been met with opposition from other companies regarding its quest to patent “Glass”, as well. Border Stylo, who developed a browser extension called “Write on Glass,” wrote the trademark office last month in opposition of Google getting the trademark. Google, of course, fought back and filed a petition to cancel Border Stylo’s trademark.
Google doesn’t necessarily need a trademark to call its product “Glass,” but not having one could make it for the company to protect the product or sue for infringement. “They just want to call it ‘Glass.’ They don’t want to have to call it ‘Google Glass,’” attorney Josh Gerben said.