Global rapper Cardi B has recently filed an application to register her signature catchphrase and sound effect “Okurrr” with the US Patent and Trade mark Office.
“Okurrr” is a playful variation of the word “okay” and whilst Cardi B cannot necessarily make the argument that she invented the word, she might be able to argue successfully that she brought it to the attention of the mainstream and that she is responsible for commercialising the phrase. She wants to use the phrase on all her future merchandise including clothing, footwear, posters and other items.
Cardi B is not the first musician to trade mark phrases. Back in 2015, Taylor Swift filed to protect phrases including “this sick beat” and “we never go out of style”.
It is clear that Cardi B has established a unique catchphrase that has become an integral part of her brand and contributes to her fame and profitability. It is therefore a good idea for her to register the trade mark and to monetise it through the sales of products.
This is an important reminder that trade marks do not just protect brand names but also protects slogans, phrases or taglines. The right slogan can add significant value to a brand and can help companies to build brand identity. Registration is possible, for example Nike’s ‘JUST DO IT’ and McDonalds ‘I’M LOVIN’ IT’ trade marks are prime examples of slogans being an important asset to a business.
Catchphrases can spread and catch on so quickly, so if you have a unique slogan that you want to protect do get in touch with us before it’s too late!
Briffa advises on all aspects of trade mark law and practice and offers free 30-minute consultations to all new clients. If you would like to book a call or a meeting with one of our specialist IP lawyers, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 020 7288 6003.
Written by Noyemie Sahakian, Solicitor