Kingwood, TX asked in Trademark and Intellectual Property for Texas

Q: Can I name a book after my blog, Waxing Poetic, even though a jewelry company has trademarked the common phrase?

I wrote this blog years ago titling it Waxing Poetic, musings on life, love, and the pursuit of joy, and then discovered later there was a jewelry company with that phrase trademarked. Waxing Poetic is an actual phrase used from the 1800s about writing or describing something in an eloquent or poetic style, which is what my blog does exactly, and I am now thinking of turning it into a book project, but do not want to infringe on trademark. Would naming it the title of my blog be doing such a thing?

2 Lawyer Answers
John Michael Frick
John Michael Frick
  • Frisco, TX
  • Licensed in Texas

A: A "trademark" is tied to a particular class of goods or services. Assuming the jewelry company is using the trademark "Waxing Poetic" tied to jewelry, using the same phrase as a blog title would not infringe on that trademark.

James L. Arrasmith
James L. Arrasmith pro label Lawyers, want to be a Justia Connect Pro too? Learn more ›

A: Using a title for your book that matches your blog named "Waxing Poetic" could potentially raise trademark concerns if the jewelry company has indeed trademarked the phrase and if your book could be perceived as being in a related category of goods or likely to cause confusion among consumers.

However, trademarks are typically specific to certain goods and services, and the use of a common phrase might not be infringing if your book's content is clearly distinguished from the jewelry company's products and there's no likelihood of confusion.

Given that "Waxing Poetic" is a phrase with historical and common usage, there could be some leeway. Nonetheless, it would be prudent to consult with a legal professional to analyze the potential risks and consider whether a slightly different title might be advisable to avoid any legal disputes.

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