We use cookies on this site to enable your digital experience. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our cookie policy. close
Focus On
NEW In-House Counsel | Insurance | Intellectual Property | Immigration | Natural Resources | Real Estate | Tax
Story image

Google: It’s a verb; it’s a noun; it’s an example of genericide

Friday, July 13, 2018 @ 1:56 PM | By Richard Stobbe

Can a brand become so well known that it crosses the boundary and becomes a generic word? When I go to the shoe store, do I shop for “nikes” or do I shop for Nike-brand footwear?


It’s certainly true that a registered trademark can suffer “genericide” if it becomes so commonly used that it loses distinctiveness and morphs into a generic word which is synonymous with a product or service. In the case of Nike, I’d argue the brand rights are quite safe.

It’s a...