The IPKat has learned from Reuters that Lego has failed in its attempt to enforce its trade mark for the design of its building blocks in the Canadian Supreme Court. In a strongly worded decision, the court found in favour of Lego’s rival MegaBloks. The court showed its displeasure at Lego’s previous market dominance, saying
"The monopoly on the bricks is over, and Mega Bloks and Lego bricks may beand
interchangeable in the bins of the playrooms of the nation…Dragons, castles and
knights may be designed with them, without any distinction"
"(Lego) is no longer entitled to protection against competition in respect ofThe idea that a company should not be able extend the monopoly granted by a patent that has since expired by relying on trade mark rights appears to have been at the forefront the court’s mind.
its product. It must now face the rigors of a free market and its process of
The IPKat is in favour of leaving this one to consumer perception. If consumers are confused, then it’s right to protect, them, even if the thing that they were confused about was once protected by a patent or other IP right. The existence of the other right doesn’t take away the justification for giving the trade mark right.