Q: I am starting my own business. I came up with the name in 2008, but there's a 2017 tv show with the same name...
I invented the name for my business back in 2007-2008 and want to use this name as I am starting my own consulting business. However, in 2017 there was a documentary/TV series created with the same name. Is this copyright infringement if I go forward using the name I'd come up with? It's not really goods/services, and I'm not sure they have a trademark on the name either.
A: As long as you are not creating written or media pieces (film) with the name as a title (assuming the name is unique and identical to the TV show) then there is probably neither copyright nor trademark infringement. But without reviewing the specific title and nature of your business it is impossible to be more specific, so meet with an intellectual property lawyer to be sure. The fact that you “came up with” the name 10 years ago but never used it does not help you.
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