Trademark News & Screw-ups Capitol Hill's Honeyhole loses round in trademark battle over name

When looking at whether two brands are confusingly similar, one must look beyond comparing the actual goods and services that these two brands cover. One must look at related products and services as well. In this case, one brand was registered for whiskey, while another one, an identical name, sought protection for bar services. Goods and services are not identical but are certainly related, thus creating a likelihood of confusion. The real lesson here is that the bar whose application was denied has allegedly been using their brand for 19 years. However, they only decided to protect their "classic name" in 2016. Regardless of the outcome of their trademarking process at this point, it would have been so much easier (and cheaper) for them to have secured their brand back in 1999 when they started. And it would have prevented the whiskey company not only from blocking the name but also from distributing their whiskey under the same name.

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