21
Sep/18

SDNY Lawsuit Over Use of BLOCKCHAIN Trademark – You Read That Right


 

 

Plaintiff, Blockchain Luxembourg, owns a federal trademark registration for BLOCKCHAIN and design, disclaiming  the word BLOCKCHAIN.  It provides blockchain-related goods and services, and operates websites at blockchain.com and blockchain.info.

It defines the marks in which it claims rights in this suit in para 24 of the complaint:

So yes, plaintiff disclaimed the word BLOCKCHAIN in its registration, and it is claiming rights in the word BLOCKCHAIN per se in this complaint.  That’s not a show-stopper.  The disclaimer will have some evidentiary weight as to the state of play on the date that the disclaimer was made, but a party can argue that it has acquired secondary meaning in the mark subsequent to that.

Defendant is operating as Blockchain.io.  It allegedly offers identical or related crypto coin goods and services.

I guess you have to read the complaint.

 

UPDATE: I have been contacted by the Director of Communications of Blockchain.io, who asked me to post the following reply:

Paymium, that has been successfully operating a BTC/EUR exchange since 2013 and serving 170,000 customers, is currently closing its private ICO to accelerate the rollout of Blockchain.io. The public sale for this complementary cryptocurrency exchange service will start on September 27. 

The domain name Blockchain.io was registered by Paymium way back in April 2012 (https://www.whois.com/whois/blockchain.io), and the Blockchain.io project launch was publicly advertised in the press months ago. 3 days before the beginning of the sale, and a few weeks away from the official release of our platform, it thus comes as no surprise that we are challenged by some potential competitors, for obvious reasons. We condemn this approach that surely doesn’t comply with the crypto-community values. 

Moreover, Blockchain.io disputes the accusation of making false and misleading statements. What is at stake is, at first, the protection of our name, our reputation, and our loyal investors and customers. For these reasons, our lawyers will answer point by point the claims that have been made.

As for our ICO, we already provided early investors with the alpha version of our platform that is ready to be launched right after the public sale in November. The name blockchain.io is the legal property of Paymium and the public sale will start as planned on September 27.”

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