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Prince’s Estate Makes it Rain Purple on the USPTO

November 5 2020

Quarles & Brady LLP - James J. Aquilina

Paisley Park Enterprises, Inc., the music publishing company founded by the late artist Prince, recently obtained a federal trademark registration for the purple color shown below known as "Love Symbol #2" in the Pantone Matching System. The registration covers music, video, and motion picture-related recording goods in International Class 009.

The registration, a record of which can be seen here, is based in part on acquired distinctiveness of the purple color as used on compact discs stretching back to 1992, but is not limited to any specific shape of the product packaging used for these goods. Accordingly, the registrant could likely make a colorable claim for trademark infringement against any party using this or a similar color in connection with music, video, or motion picture-related recordings or related goods and services.

The registration of this product configuration serves as an example of the successful creation of source identification through the deliberate, long-term use of a single color on product packaging for a specific category of goods.

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