An image is more than just a logo, a design, a slogan, or a memorable image.
It's a meticulously crafted personality profile of a person, organization,
corporation, item, or service. - Daniel J. Boorstin
A trademark is a unique design, mark, image, symbol, icon, or phrasing connected
to a specific commodity for sale to distinguish the merchandise from commodities
sold or created by others, designate the creator as the source of the product.
Once authorized, the creator can use the rights legally, and they become his
property as well as a legal right to prosecute the infringer. As a result, marks
that have been protected are better protected legally.
A machine, a header, a tag, a voucher, initials, a signature, a phrase, a
letter, an integer, the texture of the goods, the packaging, or any combo of
A collective mark is a mark used by members of that group to denote
participation in the group or to recognize and differentiate members'
merchandise from those of non-members.
A mark skilled of being represented graphically and capable of differentiating
one person's items and/or services from those of others, which could include the
form of the commodities, their packaging, and color combinations;
Doctrine Of Dilution In India:
The Concept of Dilution of a Trademark is a type of mark violation in which the
proprietor through a renowned brand name can avert anyone else from using their
mark because it dilutes their individuality or harms their reputation. In
practice, nobody has the right to copy a prominent trademark or to exploit the
reputation of a renowned trademark. Dilution protection, on the other hand,
seeks to maintain reasonably robust and reputed trademark rights from renouncing
their unique alliance with a specific product in the public consciousness.
Within many cases, trademark dilution refers to the illegal use of another's
brand name on merchandise that isn't in direct competition with, and only has a
passing resemblance to, the trademark owners. For instance, a well-known
trademark used by one corporation to refer to manufactured devices may be
diluted if it is used by another corporation to refer to processed foods or
The ancient law in India, the Trade and Merchandise Marks Act, 1958, did not
address trademark dilution, and it relied on international norms to resolve any
disparities emerging from mark similarities. The main goal was to prevent any
dilution of the acknowledged marks in the minds of the general public.
Sec 29(1)(2) Trademark violation happens only where the challenged mark is
deceptively very closely related to the registered mark. As a result, the "mark
similarity" is given a lot of weight.
Sec. 29(4) This section assumes that goods that are unrelated to one another are
In addition, under Section 29 of the trademark statute, Indian law does not
consider trademark rights dilution. As a result, the act only mentions
infringement in connection to things that are identical or not comparable. The
conundrum of Indian courts is that in reality, Instead of dilution, the term is
applied to the common law action of transferring off, Indian courts have
frequently concluded that even though a mark is quiet in India, it has a utility
to be used for diverse commodities and cannot be prohibited.
The Landmark Case of ITC v Philip Morris Products SA & Ors.
The trademark dilution basis of action in India is well-understood in this
instance. A dilution legal action is identified if the following fundamental
components are satisfied, according to the High Court, citing section 29(4) of
the Trade Marks Act, 1999:
- The contested mark is deceptively similar to a reputed mark.
- In India, the reputed mark has a Goodwill.
- The usage of the contested mark is without justification.
- The usage of the contested mark amounts to taking unfair advantage of
the registered trademark's unique character or repute or is harmful to it.
ITC's loss to Philip Morris was attributed to its usage of the "Namaste"
branding on their cigarettes. The High Court noted that not only the use of the
Namaste logo alongside the Welcome Group trademark but also the lack of such a
design on cigarette packets renders ITC's trademark dilution claim
The trademark dilution legal case cannot exist because ITC never utilized the
mark on cigarettes and the ITC brand's fame could not be transferred to mid-to
There is a gap between Indian and American judicial decisions. The Indian court
simply specifies that the marks must have a "reputation in India," whereas, in
the United States, the mark must be reputed. A distinction must be drawn between
a 'renowned' mark and a 'reputational' mark. Because diluted rights are
inherently uncertain, the bar of fame needed to claim them must be high as well.
Exceptions to this concept:
Any reasonable use of a registered trademark by another person, particularly
nominative or evocative reasonable use, or enablement of such fair use, other
than as a source identifier for the individual's own commodities and/or
services, with use in conjunction with other trademarks.
- Consumers can compare goods and services thanks to marketing or
promotions that allow them to do so.
- Identifying the renowned trademark proprietor the items or services and
parodying, ridiculing, or remarking on them.
- News reporting and analysis in all formats.
- Any mark that contains satire, criticism, or remarks.
The power granted to the well-versed trademark owner is known as the concept of
dilution. This philosophy will aid in the prevention of fraudulent acts that
occur over time as well as the preservation of a company's reputation. These
well-known enterprises contribute to our country's GDP growth, and it is the
administration's responsibility to defend them against unfair Competition and
other deceptive practices. Section 29(4) is a measure that exists in addition to
the violation action. The concept of dilution is based on the courts' authority
and the conditions they set. To prevent confusion, if a trademark fails to pass
the court's standards, it is not authorized in the marketplace.