Brazil: Caso paixao.com.br mostra entendimento do STJ quanto a conflito de marcas

Afinal, o que deve prevalecer? Uma marca registrada ou um nome de domínio para o mesmo termo, em nome de terceiro? Os conflitos entre marcas, nomes de domínio e até mesmo nomes comerciais são comuns e chegam a atingir a nossa corte superior, ao contrário do que acontece com as disputas "clássicas" entre titulares de marcas.

No último dia 6 de dezembro o Superior Tribunal de Justiça julgou mais um destes conflitos envolvendo de um lado a marca registrada "paixão" e do outro lado o nome de domínio www.paixao.com.br.

Foi em 2005, após tomar conhecimento do site www.paixao.com.br que o titular de registros concedidos pelo Instituto Nacional da Propriedade Industrial (Inpi) para a marca "paixão" propôs uma ação judicial alegando a infração de sua marca.

Em sua defesa, a empresa titular do nome de domínio sustentou que "paixão" é palavra comum e vulgar na língua portuguesa, sendo inapropriável a título exclusivo e ressaltando que o Inpi já concedeu diversos outros registros para marcas "paixão" a diferentes titulares.

Após enfrentar as instâncias ordinárias, a ação foi recentemente analisada pelos Ministros do STJ que confirmaram as prévias decisões do processo, negando a existência de infração tendo em vista que a marca "paixão" se destina a designar produtos do mercado de cosméticos e o nome de domínio, à época, era de um site de relacionamento.

No julgamento, o ministro Luiz Felipe Salomão ressaltou que a mera existência de um registro de marca não basta para garantir o direito de utilização do nome em ambientes virtuais e que o direito de uso exclusivo de uma marca não é absoluto. O Ministro também citou a existência de uma exceção legal que é o caso das marcas reconhecidas pelo INPI como marcas de alto renome e que possuem uma proteção especial independente do ramo mercadológico que se insere.

Entretanto, aduziu que a marca registrada "paixão" não possui a proteção especial porque não teve seu alto renome declarado pelo Inpi, chegando a relativizar a abrangência do alto renome ao afirmar que a proteção especial deve ser analisada "a depender do caso concreto".

O entendimento aplicado pelo STJ neste caso foi bastante restritivo e não deve ser considerado como um precedente para toda e qualquer disputa envolvendo marcas e nomes de domínio. Ainda que no caso em destaque a marca seja composta por um termo dicionarizado e comum, deve-se ter em mente que quanto mais famosa a marca é, maior deve ser a sua proteção, independentemente do segmento de mercado e da forma de utilização. Tal conceito é especialmente aplicado às marcas notórias, compreendidas aqui em sentido lato sensu.

Marcas notórias são, em termos gerais, aqueles sinais que extravasam o mero significado de seus signos e que são reconhecidos pelo público por seus valores. Tais sinais, evidentemente, podem sofrer, com mais constância, tentativas de captura de seu prestígio, alcançado como resultado de investimentos aplicados, no decorrer do tempo, em marketing, pesquisa e desenvolvimento.

Um conflito levado ao STJ em 2013, entre a denominação de origem do vinho BORDEAUX e marca nacional idêntica para assinalar serviços de buffet, leva importante observação do Ministro Ricardo Villas Bôas Cueva:

"A ideia singela do Direito de Marcas é exatamente a certificação de origem ao consumidor, não se justificando o uso indiscriminado de designações conhecidas, em especial, notórias, como a região de Bordeaux, ainda que para designação de produtos ou serviços diversos, vez que aí evidente a intenção de aproveitamento do sucesso alheio (uma espécie de carona), ou seja, um aproveitamento parasitário, onde mesmo sem caracterizar uma concorrência (pois são produtos ou serviços diversos no caso), procura-se extrair vantagem de marca alheia" (REsp 1.165.655).

Nesse sentido, as mais altas cortes do país não podem olvidar desta bem colocada "ideia singela" do Direito Marcário.

Sem negar a importância do princípio da repressão à concorrência desleal ocasionada pela confusão de sinais de origens diversas, há que se aferir, nos conflitos entre sinais distintivos, se o suposto violador está imbuído de má-fé, na aberta tentativa de tomar carona no prestígio de marca alheia, ainda que para designar e proteger serviços e produtos diversos.

O uso e o registro de sinais distintivos em segmentos diversos é, claramente, permitido pela legislação marcária, se este uso ou registro não está permeado de intenções parasitárias. É nesta esteira que a legislação nacional vem impedir, acima de tudo, o abuso de direito, assim como o desvio de sua função na busca do enriquecimento sem causa e no dano gerado à reputação e unicidade (intrínseca ou adquirida) dos sinais notórios alheios.

Estas são as previsões dos artigos 187 e 884, ambos do Código Civil, os quais, naturalmente, se aplicam ao Direito Marcário.

É bom que se consigne que esta captura de prestígio de sinal notório alheio é normalmente detectável, justamente, nos casos de associação entre os sinais de segmentos diversos (diferentemente da confusão propriamente dita).

A associação entre marcas de segmentos diversos ganhou especial atenção nos últimos anos, diante da prevalência dos grandes conglomerados que passam a explorar áreas e segmentos diversos de seu core business inicial.

Esta forma de exploração econômica gerou ao público a facilidade de associar sinais idênticos em segmentos diversos, a exemplo da marca Virgin, à qual está ligada aos mais diversos setores econômicos, de produção musical à telecomunicação, aviação, alimentos e, mais recentemente, turismo espacial.

Esta dinamicidade que permeia o Direito Marcário clama, de nossos tribunais, maior cuidado na análise de casos concretos, sempre balizando os princípios que permeiam o Direito Marcário com aquele princípio geral da proporcionalidade, o qual se presta para equacionar os meios legais ao que é justo e razoável.

Se ficou consignado que o site de relacionamento www.paixao.com.br registrou seu domínio de boa-fé, não abusando de seu direito para capturar o prestígio da notória marca "paixão", correto parece ter sido o STJ ao considerar, de forma restritiva, o princípio da especialidade como principal parâmetro para análise do conflito.

Ao contrário, na hipótese de ter sido evidenciada a intenção de associar o site à marca notória "paixão", para captura de seu prestígio, então, estaria o STJ equivocado ao analisar o caso de forma simplista, com vistas apenas ao princípio da especialidade, sem passar pelo crivo do abuso do direito e desvio de sua função.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

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