Wednesday, October 17, 2007


For Trademarks, we read a case about a hotel chain that created a "McSleep" brand of hotels, and was subsequently sued by McDonald's for infringement. The court found a likelihood of confusion by customers, who would believe that McDonald's was affiliated with the chain.

In the notes following the case, the text editors got a laugh out of me when they considered the relatedness of the products: fast food versus hotels. They wrote, "No one who would have booked a night at a McSleep Inn would have slept on the floor of the local McDonald's restaurant but for the confusion." (This is true, but I think the point is that McSleep is capitalizing on McDonald's good will.)

Later, the editors note that McDonald's has since created some hotels in Switzerland; the travel brochures describe it: "Each room is feng shui-influenced and designed in subtly matched colors creating a soothing atmosphere." The editors add wryly, "Presumably that means no large portraits of Ronald McDonald over the beds."

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