The Top 10 Biggest Trademark Disputes of 2018

Following on from last year's post about the biggest trademark battles of the year, Lawyer Monthly has put together this year's round up.

  1. Girl Scouts Vs Boy Scouts

In the US, the Girl Scouts are the 2nd biggest selling cookie producer, so it was no shock how they responded when their empire was threatened by the potential gender evolution of the Boy Scouts. In May 2018 the Boy Scouts, historically known as such, announced it would allow girls to join its 11 to 17-year olds’ club, and immediately after, announced its intention to change name from Boy Scouts to Scouts BSA. In November 2018, the Girl Scouts filed in New York for trademark infringement over the use of the word “scout” without a gender modifier, implying that without the word ‘Boy’, the now known as Scouts BSA would dramatically shift the long-standing distinction between the two groups.

(Bureau of Reclamation – Girl Scouts at Hoover Dam 2014-2)

The Scouts BSA told Fortune in a statement: “We applaud every organization that builds character and leadership in children, including the Girl Scouts of the USA, and believe that there is an opportunity for both organizations to serve girls and boys in our communities.”

The GSUSA claims: “Only GSUSA has the right to use the Girl Scouts and Scouts trademarks with leadership development services for girls,” and the Boy Scouts infringements are “new and uniquely damaging to GSUSA.”

The dispute is ongoing, so we’re yet to see which of the scouts will reign in the gender-neutral near future.

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