CHUBBY NOODLE has challenged FAT NOODLE for using a trademark too similar to its own to sell noodles to folks in San Francisco. Evaluating whether these two trademarks are “confusingly similar” will be key to the outcome of this lawsuit. In trademark law, evaluating if two marks are “confusingly similar” is critical. For example, will noodle-loving patrons be confused by the similarity of the CHUBBY NOODLE and FAT NOODLE trademarks (pictured below) and think these two separately-owned restaurants are related, affiliated or have the same owner?
Curiously, do you think the two trademarks look so similar that you would assume the two restaurants are related?
Are the CHUBBY NOODLE and FAT NOODLE trademarks more or less “confusingly similar” to you than these registered trademarks for other noodle shops?
In the lawsuit filed by CHUBBY NOODLE they also claim that, since the words “CHUBBY” and “FAT” are synonyms consumers are more likely to be confused and think the restaurants are related. It will be interesting to see how this duel between the noodle shops pans out.
A copy of the complete complaint filed by CHUBBY NOODLE against FAT NOODLE is available at: http://insidescoopsf.sfgate.com/files/2015/01/11329862-0-48091.pdf
BY: Vanessa Kaster, Esq., LL.M.
See also: other blog posts on trademarks at https://iplegalfreebies.wordpress.com/category/t-r-a-d-e-m-a-r-k/; the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office website at www.uspto.gov; @iplegalfreebies and www.kasterlegal.com.