In Tao Licensing, LLC v Bender Consulting Ltd d/b/a Asian Pacific Beverages 125 USPQ2d 1043 (TTAB 2017) the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) granted a petition to cancel a registration for the mark TAO VODKA for “alcoholic beverages except beer” (VODKA disclaimed) on the grounds of non-use and likelihood of confusion with the petitioner’s registered and famous TAO mark for restaurant and nightclub services. The respondent’s “eyebrow-raising activities” in choosing this mark after the petitioner refused to purchase its vodka, including adopting a very similar font to that used by the petitioner, played a role in the TTAB’s Section 2(d) ruling.

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