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Sunday, 8 February 2004

A BUSHY TALE FROM CHINA

Ananova reports that a Beijing businessman by the name of Guo has applied for permission to use the name of US President George W. Bush for his brand of disposable nappies. He has filed an application with the General Administration for Industry and Commerce of China, stating he wants to register the word BUSHI. According to Xinhua Guo said: "I hit upon the idea by chance. Back in my hometown in Henan Province, the pronunciation of BUSHI sounds exactly like 'not wet'". An official at the State Trade Mark Bureau has indicated the application was “very likely” to be rejected "because it may bring about bad social impact if a leader's name is registered as a trade mark". The result of Guo's application will be known in 16 months, following the completion of the rather complex procedure for examination and approval. It has also been reported that the Chinese authorities have recently turned down an application by a costume company, which applied for the use the Chinese translation of "(Monica) Lewinsky" as a trade mark for fashion goods.

The IPKat notes that the registration of names of famous leaders like George W. Bush by third parties is not normally possible in European jurisdictions. However, the registration of BUSH or BUSHI would not be problematic, particularly in English-speaking jurisdictions. “Bush” is just another word for a shrub, while “bushi” just sounds like “bushy”.

Other famous Bushes here, here and here
Bush babies here and here
More on Chinese trade marks here, here and here

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