The European Union General Court on Wednesday ruled against Adidas’ claim that its famous three stripes, applied in any direction, deserve trademark protection.
The ruling dealt a blow to a sports apparel giant that famously polices other companies and designers for any possible infringement on its logo.
The high court judgment upheld a 2016 decision from the European Union Intellectual Property Office, which dismissed Adidas’ 2014 trademark application after determining the logo was “devoid of any distinctive character.”
Similarly, the General Court said the German company could not prove that the stripes had a distinctive enough character throughout the 28-nation trade bloc. “The mark is not a pattern mark composed of a series of regularly repetitive elements, but an ordinary figurative mark,” the court said in a statement.
Adidas said it is disappointed in the ruling and is considering its next options.
It’s a rare loss for the sports apparel company, which has earned a tough reputation among competitors and fashion designers for aggressively litigating against anyone who has used stripes in their collections.
New York designer Thom Browne switched the number of stripes from three to four in his signature line of grey suits after he was sued by the sportswear company.
Adidas also exchanged blows with footwear brand Skechers. After partially winning a lawsuit in May 2018 over a Stan Smith tennis shoe lookalike, Adidas continued to notify Skechers over trademark violations throughout the year, leading Skechers to file acountersuit in late 2018, reported the Fashion Law website.
1）devoid adj. 缺乏，没有
常见用法：devoid of sth. 没有…的；缺乏…的
I have never looked on a face that was so devoid of feeling.
She is devoid of all pretence.
in a figurative sense 从比喻意义上来说
figurative painting（写实画）& abstract painting（抽象画）