Twitter’s trademark battle in Singapore against a Singaporean tech startup

Twitter’s trademark battle in Singapore against a Singaporean tech startup, Twitter’s trademark battle in Singapore, a Singaporean tech startup, trademark battle in Singapore,

Twitter’s trademark battle in Singapore against a Singaporean tech startup

Twitter has been one of the most popular social media platforms in the entire world. Even the president of the United States or the richest man on Earth got the connection with this platform. However, besides all the commotion, in recent times, Twitter has actually been in a constant battle in Singapore against a Singaporean tech startup.

According to a ruling on March 11, 2022, by the principal assistant registrar of Trade Marks Mark Lim, Twitter has won its trademark battle against the Singaporean technology startup VV Technology. 

Specifically, the registrar decides that the mark the startup company tries to register is visually similar to that of the globally popular social media service.

Therefore, the trademark application got denied. However, is it the end of the story?

The history of the battle dates back to September 10, 2018, when the startup applied for trademark registration of a bird while in flight.

According to the description, most people would have immediately thought of the famous bird of Twitter spreading its wings, flying in the blue sky background.  

The bird of the VV Technology company did not have any eyes and the image showed the bird’s side view. According to them, they were gonna use the logo for a mobile application for online shopping and food delivery services.

Immediately after the filing, Twitter received the news and started opposition actions against the Singaporean firm. Their reason is that the logo’s very similar to its own hugely famous trademark.

On their hands, VV Technology claimed that mobile app users are “digital natives” and will not be confused by the two similar-looking bird logos.

In his ruling on March 11, Lim said that the Twitter logo’s reputation will reduce the likelihood that the public will be confused by the two marks because the worldwide’s reputation of Twitter will hardly be affected by a small startup company and therefore, the consumers won’t likely to mistake them. 

Regardless, he also said it may be possible that consumers will still be confused as the two marks may give them the notion of an economic link existing between them.

Expert opinions

According to Lim, because of the high similarity between the marks, in terms of visualization, the application of the startup got denied. Nonetheless, he further added that the visual similarity is only to a low extent.

The other important aspect is that the two marks are conceptually identical since both depict the image of a bird seemingly in flight.

George Hwang, director at George Hwang LL.C in Singapore has stated about the trademark battle between the 2 companies: “I agree that visually similar marks should not be registered, all other conditions for opposition having been fulfilled.”

Stating this, Mr. Hwang is referring to the conditions for trademark registration in Singapore in particular and in the world in general, which are the: similarity of goods or services and the likelihood of confusion by the relevant public.

Hwang added: “In fact, there are many cases where the visual similarity is low and the court goes on to examine the other factors. What I have some disquiet about is the reading of this low visual similarity with the other rulings in condition number three, which is ‘likelihood of confusion.”

Hwang further explained: “This is wider than the classic situation of consumers believing the services emanate from the same source.” 

*** Other Articles***

– You could visit here to see Procedure of Singapore Trademark Registration.

– You could visit here to check the required documents for filing trademark in Singapore

– You can also check the Fee of Trademark In Singapore here.

–  You could check how to register trademark in Singapore here.

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