Gibson Loses Firebird Body Trademark In The EU

October 26, 2019, 17 days ago

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Gibson Loses Firebird Body Trademark In The EU

Back in June it was reported that Gibson had lost the rights to trademark the Flying V guitar body shape in a judgement handed down by the Second Chamber of the EU General Court, which declared that, “there has been no demonstration of distinctive character acquired,” by the Flying V body shape and, “that when the application for registration of the challenged mark was filed, the V-shape did not depart significantly from the norms and customs of the sector.”

Guitar.com is now reporting that Gibson has now lost the trademark for the classic Firebird shape guitar.

The decision, which was made by the Cancellation Division of the EU Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO), was handed down on 11 October 2019, and has strong parallels with the Flying V case.

Read the complete report here.

Gibson Brands Inc. emerged from bankruptcy protection on November 1st, 2018. In January 2019 they hit the annual NAMM trade fair in Anaheim, CA with daily events, artist performances, Q&A’s, and new product debuts. And now, in June 2019, the company recently put Director Of Brand Experience, Mark Agnesi, in the spotlight with a controversial video in which he warns guitar builders over trademark infringement. It received major backlash from the music community and was taken down - presumably by Gibson - but as nothing on the internet is ever really gone, it has been re-uploaded in poorer quality. See below.

In the video, Agnesi warns other guitar brands, boutique or otherwise, against producing forgeries of Gibson design elements:

"To the manufacturers out there, we want you to know that you’ve been warned. People ask us a lot about forgeries and counterfeit guitars, often of lower craftsmanship coming in from overseas, but there’s some common misconceptions about what a forgery is and what trademark infringement is. Any copy of any one of those designs that we’ve named is in fact by definition a counterfeit Gibson guitar."

The video is also available via Reddit here.

And, the backlash:



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