We recently had a client with a private label brand on Amazon sign up for our brand protection services. He was a smaller, family-owned businessman who just received his trademark approval and thought his brand was protected.. until he had multiple sellers jump on (or hijack) his Amazon listings.
A seller does not necessarily have to be registered for a trademark or a copyright, but in terms of enforcing on ecommerce platforms, it is beneficial to have registered rights.
Intellectual property can be broken down into 3 categories:
– A trademark is the protection of a name, symbol or design which is used to identify source goods or services. A subpart of trademark is trade dress, which is “ the overall appearance and image in the marketplace of a product or a commercial enterprise. For a product, trade dress typically comprises packaging and labeling. For an enterprise, it typically comprises design and decor.”
– Copyright law protects works of original authorship, such as novels, poems or musical compositions.
– Patents provide the protection of ideas such as inventions or technological processes.
Essentially, the other sellers were not selling his product; they were selling generic, or counterfeit, versions of his product. So he then conducted a test buy and filed the proper reports with Amazon.
When you are filing a counterfeit complaint, you need to HAVE PROOF that the product is counterfeit. If you did a test buy and can show that one product is not identical to the exact listing, that is proof and you can file a counterfeit complaint.
Unfortunately, he was investing quite a bit of time into this and he was not getting any traction from the reports. The counterfeiters were lingering on his listing and affecting his sales.
Within the first week, we got approximately 90% of these individuals off his account. By the end of the second week, everyone was off his listing and there were no more unauthorized sellers.
Our client had his listings back and was able to go back to selling as usual. A big win for our client, and another win for the attorneys at Rosenbaum Famularo, PC.