Q: If company X has trademarked, day, the name Cooper, can someone call his indie publisher Cooper Books?
I have noted, for example, that the name Melville is a trademark for a construction company, but there is an independent publisher called Melville House Books
Trademark registration is different than copyright registration in that the purpose is protect consumers' expectations of a product or service's source and quality. It does not protect the registrant's "creative ownership" of a phrase or design, etc.
If "Cooper" has been registered for a different product or service than the publishing of books, registration is possible. (For example, there is the mortgage service "Mr. Cooper," formerly known as Ditech.)
I recommend that you consult with a trademark or intellectual property attorney to discuss your proposed mark and to enlist his or her professional assistance in a thorough search not only of the USPTO database for registered Federal marks that may confuse consumers but also state registrations, domain names, and other sources.
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