Trademark Registration: 100% THAT BITCH

by Dennis Cxrouch

In re Lizzo LLC (TTAB 2023)

In a brand new precedential opinion, the TTAB has sided with the musical artist Lizzo — agreeing to register her mark “100% THAT BITCH” to be used on attire.  The Trademark Inspecting Legal professional had refused registration on “failure-to-function” — concluding that the phrase was a commonplace expression used to precise a well-recognized sentiment.

The phrase comes from Lizzo’s 2017 tune Reality Hurts (remade in 2019) that has turn out to be a viral sleeper hit.  The unique line within the tune is “I simply took a DNA take a look at, seems I’m 100% that bitch.” However Lizzo herself didn’t create the phrase. Slightly, Lizzo apparently noticed a social media meme about being 100% that bitch after which added it to her tune.  The analyzing legal professional concluded that “proof that customers might affiliate the phrase with the well-known singer/tune as a result of it was a lyric within the singer’s tune doesn’t entitle the applicant as a singer-songwriter to acceptable for itself unique use of the phrase.”

On attraction, the TTAB reversed the refusal.  In contrast to patents and copyrights, trademark regulation will not be designed to reward the inventive endeavor of invention or authorship.  Slightly, trademark is designed as a consume-protection and market-function device and so focuses on shopper notion.  Right here, the proof means that the mark is being utilized in a decorative trend (moderately than as merely phrases) and that extraordinary customers affiliate the mark with Lizzo.  Regardless that she didn’t create the phrases – she is the one who made them well-liked and remodeled the “lesser identified phrase to extra memorable standing.”  On these grounds, the TTAB concluded that the mark is registrable and thus reversed the denial.

Just a few years in the past the mark would have additionally been rejected as scandalous, however that situation has been off the desk because the Supreme Court docket’s FUCT resolution.

Learn the TTAB Resolution right here: Lizzo TTAB Resolution