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Disney Attempts to Trademark Princess Aurora


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#16 Old Fashioned

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Posted 06 May 2009 - 04:41 PM

:ermm:: The cartoon movie's "double" is the Maryinsky's Somova; there's a very strong resemblance.


I hardly think Disney can sue someone for looking like herself (Somova really does look like cartoon Aurora, but I like cartoon Aurora better). Then again, I don't know...there are some awfully silly claims out there made by silly corporate lawyers, one in particular that I'm thinking of is American Apparel defending its unauthorized use of Woody Allen's image, making the case that his image is too damaged to be worth anything. :) Talk about chutzpah.

#17 bart

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Posted 06 May 2009 - 04:48 PM

Thanks, jilaney, for your information.

The identified goods and/or services would be Disney's rendering of the princess and the mark would be Disney's name association with it

This does seem to be fairly narrow as copyright restrictions go, unless I'm missing something. I'm not sure I see a big problem, other than the obscene amount of time which material remains in copyright under the Sonny Bono (a.k.a. Mickey Mouse) Act.

#18 dirac

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Posted 06 May 2009 - 05:07 PM

This does seem to be fairly narrow as copyright restrictions go, unless I'm missing something. I'm not sure I see a big problem, other than the obsene amount of time which material remains in copyright nowadays.


I’m no expert, but as one of the commenters notes, if they were seeking a copyright on the name “Disney’s Princess Aurora” or something along those lines it would indeed be narrow enough. But “Princess Aurora” alone seems unnecessarily broad and potentially troublesome, especially since Disney plucked name, character, and story out of the public domain in the first place.

The Copyright Term Extension Act of 1998, which contributed to those obscene amounts of time, earned the sobriquet of the Mickey Mouse Protection Act, owing to the hyper-aggressive lobbying efforts of Disney in getting it passed.

#19 dirac

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Posted 06 May 2009 - 05:09 PM

bart, it looks as if you edited your post to add a reference to the 1998 Act - I was responding to the first post. Sorry for any confusion.

#20 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 06 May 2009 - 08:46 PM

:ermm:: The cartoon movie's "double" is the Maryinsky's Somova; there's a very strong resemblance.

:lol:

http://i48.photobuck...ania/AURORA.jpg
http://www.mariinsky...uppa/somova.gif

#21 sidwich

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Posted 06 June 2009 - 12:20 PM

I’m no expert, but as one of the commenters notes, if they were seeking a copyright on the name “Disney’s Princess Aurora” or something along those lines it would indeed be narrow enough. But “Princess Aurora” alone seems unnecessarily broad and potentially troublesome, especially since Disney plucked name, character, and story out of the public domain in the first place.


I just want to clarify something. Disney has filed a trademark application on Princess Aurora. That is very different from registering a copyright.

A trademark is a mark which indicates a person/entity's products or services. For example, "Google," "Porsche," "Duncan-Hines" are all word marks. There are also symbol marks such as Mercedes-Benz' star within a circle or Disney's Sleeping Beauty's castle symbol. For performers, a name can also be a mark. For example when Ben & Jerry's released the ice cream flavor "Cherry Garcia," they received a very nice Cease and Desist letter from Mr. Jerry Garcia's attorneys (obviously, this was settled).

Almost all corporations (not just Disney) are insanely protective of their marks for many reasons, among them that if they do not guard their marks it may weaken the mark and they could eventually lose the mark altogether. (For example. if you started a website with a url of ILovePorsches.com just see how long it takes you to get a C&D letter from their trademark counsel).

A copyright is a protection of expressed work. In the United States, registration is not required for a work to be copyrighted (for example, as soon as I am done with this post, it will be considered copyrighted). There may be some overlap between trademark and copyright, but they are not the same thing (for example, drawings of Mickey Mouse would be copyrighted, but "Mickey Mouse" is also a mark of the Disney Corporation.

#22 diane

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Posted 07 June 2009 - 03:22 AM

Thank you for the clarification. :rofl:

So... what does that mean for anyone in a future time staging a ballet about sleeping beauty, when disney supposedly has this trademark on "princess aurora"?


-d-

#23 Mme. Hermine

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Posted 07 June 2009 - 04:07 AM

as far as i can tell (and someone correct me if i am wrong), nothing unless they attempt to call a character in sleeping beauty "Disney's Princess Aurora" or some other such construct.

#24 diane

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Posted 07 June 2009 - 11:04 AM

Thanks. :rofl:


-d-

#25 sidwich

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Posted 21 June 2009 - 08:30 PM

So... what does that mean for anyone in a future time staging a ballet about sleeping beauty, when disney supposedly has this trademark on "princess aurora"?


This is not my area of expertise and this does not constitute legal advice, but in very general terms, I doubt there would be much of an issue unless there is "likelihood of confusion" that the Princess Aurora is a Disney product, Disney-endorsed or otherwise connected with Disney's Princess Aurora. As I mentioned upthread, trademarks mark a company's product or services. If there is no or minimal likelihood of confusion, there shouldn't be an issue.

#26 dirac

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Posted 23 June 2009 - 06:38 PM

Thanks, sidwich.

#27 MJ

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Posted 25 June 2010 - 11:52 AM

I think the family of Tchaikovsky should trademark the name "Princess Aurora" and the their music in Russia. The French Should Trademark the Name "Sleeping Beauty" and "Beauty and the Beast" as a French Cultural institution.

#28 leonid17

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Posted 26 June 2010 - 01:09 AM

I think the family of Tchaikovsky should trademark the name "Princess Aurora" and the their music in Russia. The French Should Trademark the Name "Sleeping Beauty" and "Beauty and the Beast" as a French Cultural institution.


I think your suggestion is great fun.

A niece of Tchaikovsky, Tatiana Anatolevna Tchaikovskaia died as recently as 1970. She married three times and had five children in all.

#29 keguri

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Posted 26 June 2010 - 04:03 AM

I'm just wondering if anyway has found confirmation of this story in other, more recognized news sources (i.e. outside of the blog-o-sphere.) Nothing came up when I searched the news on Google. Or is there a way to confirm the existence of the application. I don't want to get my blood pressure up if this isn't true --- but if it is, how terrible...

#30 leonid17

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Posted 26 June 2010 - 08:16 AM

I'm just wondering if anyway has found confirmation of this story in other, more recognized news sources (i.e. outside of the blog-o-sphere.) Nothing came up when I searched the news on Google. Or is there a way to confirm the existence of the application. I don't want to get my blood pressure up if this isn't true --- but if it is, how terrible...



The application was filed with the Trademark Office on March 13, 2007 and was widely reported on various arts and entertain websites at the time. It appears that Disney is still pursuing this matter.

You will find confirmation at:- http://tarr.uspto.go...=Request Status


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