image: Cartier

image: Cartier

The World Gold Council, the market development organization for the gold industry, is having some trademark troubles thanks to Cartier. The international trade group has been trying to federally register “LoveGold” with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”), in the classes of goods and services that cover jewelry and marketing/promotion, and is facing major opposition from the famed jewelry company. 

WGC launched its LoveGold campaign globally in 2013 in a bid to increase the desirability of contemporary gold jewelry. Shortly thereafter, it applied to register the “LoveGold” trademark with the USPTO. Enter: Cartier, which filed an opposition with the USPTO’s Trademark Trial and Appeal Board, stating that WGC lacks legal rights to register “LoveGold” as a mark, at least, in part, because Cartier claims the mark is way too similar to a number of its own trademarks. Cartier is referring to the various federal trademark registrations it has held since 1975 in connection with the name of its best selling Love bracelet. 

 One of WGC's pending trademarks

One of WGC’s pending trademarks

According to Cartier’s filing, it “believes it will be damaged by the issuance of a registration for the marks LoveGold.” The brand further asserted in its filing that Cartier has used the mark LOVE and variations thereof in connection with jewellery since the early 1970s.

As of now, the World Gold Council has not filed a reply with the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board, but a spokesman for the organization told TFL: “Cartier and WGC are in discussion regarding this issue, and hope to soon amicably resolve their differences.”

UPDATE (3/24/15): As of late March, Cartier’s opposition has been terminated by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board. 

UPDATE (11/15/16): As of now, WGC’s three pending trademark applications for its “LoveGold” marks have not yet been registered. One of the applications – the one for a “mark consists of the stylized wording ‘LOVEGOLD’. The term ‘LOVE’ appears above the word ‘GOLD’ and the term ‘GOLD’ overlaps the base of the term ‘LOVE’.” – was abandoned by WGC in June 2016. 

As for the other two applications, they are still pending. WGC was granted an extension for both of the applications (serial nos. 85794879 and 85711815) in mid-November, thereby giving it additional time to provide the USPTO with evidence that it is using the trademarks in commerce (a prerequisite for registration).