levis trade dress.jpg
Levi Strauss owns registrations that cover the design of the back pockets, such as this one:
levis back pocket.gif
which is described as:
“a double arcuate and tab design shown on the shape of a pocket, as indicated by a solid line. The lining and shading shown in the drawing are features of the mark and not intended to indicate color.”
This NY Times article reports on Levis’ active efforts to police its pocket design. The Times, with the help of Thomson West, created this terrific graphic to illustrate some of the third party pocket designs Levis has sued:
ny times pocket designs.jpg
The article quotes competitors who suggest that this litigation is some how related to Levis’ failure to take part in the emerging $200 jean market. I’m skeptical – Levis had a reputation for being litigious before there was a Seven For All Mankind.
It may be more interesting to ask: what effect has Levis’ enforcement of its ‘picket fence’ of trademarks had on competition in its segment of the jeans market?
p.s. I don’t knwo what the provenance is of the photo depicted above, but I encountered it here.