Strange Pair: Mismatched “Sox” Team Up In Pitched TM Battle

“Put me in coach, I’m ready to play today!”  John Fogerty, Centerfield

The Boston Red Sox and Chicago White Sox have little love for each other on the field.  But when it comes to protecting their names, they are natural allies.  The two Sox of different colors have paired together to block a shoe company from registering the brand name “SOXX”  for running shoes.  As reported by IP360, http://www.law360.com/ip/articles/336501, Boston and Chicago both use “SOXX” as their nicknames.  Both use those nicknames as brand names for athletic wear.

And both want to make sure that they’re the only ones that do so.  Hence, the ball clubs’ decision to take the mound to pitch their cases to the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board.  But the shoe company, INC International, won’t back away from the round-ball Sox’s high hard one.  INC has stepped up to the plate to deny Boston and Chicago’s claims that INC’s use of SOXX creates confusion with the name as used by the Boys of Summer.

Legal analysts predict that the diamond based Sox will easily send INC to the dugout.  But in litigation as in baseball, Yogi Berra’s observation “It ain’t over till it’s over”  rings as loudly as a line drive off the foul poll.   For starters, the two rival clubs will need to explain how they each can use SOXX without confusing their respective fans and customers, while contending that any other use of SOXX, such as INC’s for running shoes, should be off limits.  As Pete Rose once said:  “Never bet on baseball.”

QUOTE OF THE DAY:  “You may glory in a team triumphant, but you fall in love with a team in defeat. ”  ―    Roger Kahn, The Boys of Summer

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