The Big Guys Help The Little Guys
We’re a Little Guy.
B4B is not among the big movers and shakers of the world of business.
But, wanting to do things right, we applied to the US Patent and Trademark Office for a Trademark for our B4B logo. The examiner, though a Nice Guy, turned us down saying there was a Big Guy that we would be confused with. You see, the law is that B4B could have the same trademark if we were in completely different areas of business. The Big Guy held the trademark for the words/number B4B and the trademark examiner thought there was “a likelihood of confusion” between our businesses. I wasn’t so sure. My competitor for the trademark is a financial institution that earned about 34 Billion annually, with pre-tax profit of about 8 Billion. Yep, that’s Billion with a B – clearly a really Big Guy. We’re not in their league, though it is amusing that the trademark examiner thought B4B might be confused with this financial giant. Besides, B4B is our name, but their use of the trademark was a small part of what they do.
Over a couple of years I filed numerous responses giving arguments as to why there really was no “likelihood of confusion” between us, but could not prevail. Finally, in desperation I sent a certified letter to the CEO of this Big Guy to see if he would help me.
Within a day of receiving my letter his corporate attorney called me and offered to help. She wrote a legal brief, which we both signed, giving B4B the right to use the trademark with their blessing. I filed it with the US Patent and Trademark office.
I would gladly give the Big Guy public credit, but they didn’t want it. So this is my small way of saying “Thank You”. It’s easy to see the faults of corporations, but a big blessing to see their compassion and willingness to help The Little Guy. And, of course, we know that our Father blesses us at just the time when we need it.