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Trademark Rules 2017- Jingles and chimes can be a sound mark

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kapila
kapila
Limiting her in few words would be a herculean task. She Likes to add some zing to the story. When not writing, she loves to watch movie. She especially enjoys being a fashionholic. Affiliated with QuickCompany which deals in Trademark Registration, LLP Registration and Other Legal Activities.

Clang-Clank-Clink!

Like the chime of small bells! Make the waves in a sea of trademark noise. Modern life is increasingly noisy; you will not require more careful consideration for your brand if you represent the brand through sound. You can trademark a theme song or jingle of coins or jangle of spurs.

The ideal trademark is the one that is pushed to its utmost limits regarding abstraction and ambiguity but still readable. Trademarks are usually metaphors of one kind and make thinking visible in a certain sense.

Sound Trademark

A trademark is something which is associated with the product or company. With the time the means for branding products are diversified, and the sound mark has got prominence. With the introduction of Trademark Rules, 2017, the legal definition of trademark broadened to encompass. Slowly but steadily, the legislature is recognising the significance of non-traditional marks.

Recently notified trademark rules have revised the trademark registration process and made it easier for companies to register their brand sound mark. The change in trademark registration rules is giving hope to generate the lost interest in people for sound mark registration.

In India for sound trademark registration, all you need is a factual distinctiveness of the sound. It takes the brand to another level. When you are not using a word or logo, sound mark paves the way for asserting a trademark.

Antiquity of Sound mark

Can you trademark a sound?

The answer is YES. Using a sound as a trademark for the brand has not been considered marketing tool for long. The journey of sound branding has come a very long way.

Traditionally, it was difficult to register the sound as a trademark as it was not considered to be a trademark. Under the old act colour combination, shape, sound, tastes, 3D marks and smells could not consider as a trademark.

Only the words, signatures, names, labels, numerals, devices, acronyms and logos are given the trademark status.

Gradually, the sound made its place in the trademark market. Certain brands realised the importance of sound mark and attempted to capitalise on its own uniqueness.

Sound Logo

There is a misconception that the sound branding only refers to the sonic logos. Most of the people are aware that a trademark can be a slogan, a logo or a name but now it is possible to trademark a sound.

To enforce the recognition of the brand, sound logo and visual logo, a combination of both types is used. Sound logo, graphically represented by a series of musical notes can be the jingle, melody, theme song or music.

It’s all about the strategic curation that can be usefully heard by a target audience. The way in which sound composed and implement will affect the way audience think, feel, connect and shop. It’s important for the customers to perceive the sound as associated with a service or product.

Just like other logos, the sound logo also has the same essential qualities which are uniqueness, relevancy to brand and memorability.

Did you know

A colour and sound, non-traditional marks now become the complete identity of a brand. To know more about first ever colour trademark visit https://www.quickcompany.in/articles/japan-accorded-its-first-colour-trademark

Sound mark takes the brand recognition to the another level when one cannot use a word or logo in a setting.

Audio logo or sound logo having the equal importance for some brands.

In marketing place, the sound has its own importance because many brands are recognised by the people through the sound associated with the brand.

A corporate jingle or the sound heard on logging into a device can be a sound mark for your brand.

‘Yahoo Yodel’, a human yodelling the word ‘YAHOO’, is India’s first ever registered sound trademark.

Even National Stock Exchange’s theme song registered as a sound trademark.

Things to remember

  • Trademark law does not exclude the ‘sound marks’ explicitly, even though sound mark registrations are very rare.
  • You need to mention clearly about the sound marks in trademark application otherwise it will be considered as a word or device mark.
  • A concise description of the sound mark.
  • Graphic representation of the music must be showing and divided into measures.
  • The sound mark acquires distinctiveness so that customer can recognise the sound.

Find some Sound Trademarks

There are some sounds; you probably did not realise were actually trademarked.

To play the sound mark presented below, click on the links provided along with the examples:

  • Four note bell sound of Britannia Industries

For biscuit maker, Britannia, the four note bell sound has graced ads for many years.

  • Ringtone of a Nokia mobile phone

The Nokia ringtone, the icon of Finnish corporation Nokia is a phrase from a composition for solo guitar.

  • Lion’s roar sound of an MGM produced film corporation

The five different lions represent the MGM logo and the one who provided the trademarked sound named ‘Jackie’.

  • Yahoo’s yodel

India’s first ever sound trademark to California based internet firm Yahoo Inc.’s three note yodelling sound.

  • Thunderous sound of Harley Davidson

A unique breed, Harley Davidson must be considered a cult into themselves. They are distinctive enough to warrant a sound mark.

  • Theme song of National Stock Exchange

Trademark registry grants sound trademark registration for the theme song of NSE.

  • Corporate jingle of ICICI Bank

India’s largest private sector lender got its corporate jingle ‘Dhin Chik Dhin Chik’ sound mark registered.

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kapila
kapila
Limiting her in few words would be a herculean task. She Likes to add some zing to the story. When not writing, she loves to watch movie. She especially enjoys being a fashionholic. Affiliated with QuickCompany which deals in Trademark Registration, LLP Registration and Other Legal Activities.
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