In UKIPO in 2017, a web services provider viz. JK Solutions filed an application for registration of the mark 'KinkedIn' (Does that ring a bell?) for "agency services for arranging personal introductions, computer dating services and video dating services" - primarily online dating services. Well, yes, as you rightly guessed, LinkedIn Ireland Unlimited Company, being the proprietors of the marks 'LinkedIn' and filed an opposition against the proposed mark stating the obvious, that the marks had an uncanny similarity and are likely to confuse any person easily.
LinkedIn stated that they have been operating since 2003 and have built a strong reputation by creating one of its kind professional social networking sites. Further, having a parallel site named 'KinkedIn' is likely to tarnish the reputation and goodwill earned by LinkedIn. There was evidence produced before the UKIPO that, the Applicant's Instagram page displayed a page with the heading "Kinkedin.one" above the tag line "Like LinkedIn..... nah.... not really".
The UKIPO earlier this month, agreed with the arguments put forth by LinkedIn and held that, the use of the Applicant's mark is likely to cause confusion amongst the public at large and thus refused the registration of the mark 'KinkedIn'. Further, the Applicant was ordered to pay LinkedIn a sum of £1200.
Compiled by: Adv. Sachi Kapoor | Concept & Edited by: Dr. Mohan Dewan
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