Crocs. Sometimes you just wonder how on earth something gets successful. But, we have to admit that these plastic sandals were (and still are) a huge success. So were the Crocs lookalikes.
A powerful weapon in the fight against lookalikes is the European 3D mark of Crocs. A recent cancellation action against this 3D mark questioned the validity of this mark. According to the opponent, The 3D mark consists of the shape of goods (the shape is technically determined). Moreover, the shape is not distinctive.
Obviously Crocs defended themselves by stressing that the shape of the shoe was significantly different from what already existed in the market at the time of the filing.
The OHIM is far from convinced that the trademark should be annulled. The Office comes to the conclusion that the shape is distinctive and the appearance has some design elements such as the Crocs logo. So, at the end, Crocs is a distinctive 3D mark.
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“Trademark protection gives freedom to do business.”