AT&T Moblity as filed an opposition against trademark applicants Mark Thomann and Dormitus Brands for the word “CINGULAR.” The defendants argue that AT&T Mobility no longer has trademark rights in the word because it abandoned the name a decade ago.
Eric Perrott was quoted by IPWatchDog about AT&T Mobility’s claims and the impact of zombie brands on consumer recognition:
“The minimal requirement of standing is to show enough interest in a trademark to get a case heard. This decision is in line with what the Board has done in the past by saying that standing requirements are minimal when it comes to being able to bring a claim.”
“[Zombie brands are] a concept that we sometimes see in the auto industry, this idea that a brand that was part of everyday culture could cause confusion with the brand’s original owners if resurrected by another company.”
“I think that the argument based on the use of Cingular as a trade name is weak because they need to show consumer recognition.”
Source: Brachmann, Steve. “TTAB Finds Standing for AT&T Mobility to Oppose Registration of CINGULAR.” IPWatchDog.com. 04 April 2020.