I have made dammit dolls for years, and they have been around for 40 or fifty years. Someone registered the name "dammit doll" (3967755) and "dammit dolls" and I was asked by Etsy to take them down. I looked up the trademark registration and it said name only, so I changed my name to "bleep it dolls" now I have been as to remove them by the people that made the orignial complaint. I searched "bleepit doll" and there is no registration for thatno is there a trademark registration for Dammit doll pattern or dammit doll poem. This is what the Etsy legal department said "3) The letter stated that these listing(s) incorporate designs,
symbols, language, images, or photographs that infringe upon
the concerned party's copyright or other intellectual property
Can they do this?
1 Answer from Attorneys
I spoke to our intellectual property attorney, and this was his reply:
I have briefly reviewed the products and the applicable law. I believe this potential client has the right to apply for cancellation of the registration. It appears many etsy doll makers are using the term “dammit doll” and it appears that term has been in use long before the term was trademarked. I would recommend that the parties who use the term join together to hire our firm at an hourly rate to cancel the trademark. It would require proceedings before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board.
In the alternative, it sounds as though all our client has received are cease and desist letters and without using the phrase “dammit doll” he/she could simply wait until the trademark holder sues.
If etsy is the problem and etsy refuses to carry the dolls, we could write a letter to etsy at a flat fee of $1,300.00.
Overall, this is a TM of a 40 year old descriptive mark that slipped past the USPTO examining attorneys. It is a good case for cancellation and I would stress that cancellation is the best option.
Let me know if you have any questions,
Craig W. Broadbent,
Craig W. Broadbent
For The Firm
Law Offices of Donald W. Hudspeth, P.C.
3030 N. Central Avenue, Suite 604
Phoenix, AZ 85012
tele. 602.265.7997, ext. 112