Instagram wins the battle against Littergram

When starting a new business, you are generally focused on who your target audience will be, how you are going to market your product and what will make you different from your competitors. Registering a trademark is very rarely at the top of any entrepreneur’s list but it should be. Not registering a trademark for your new brand can have dire consequences as Littergram owner Danny Lucas discovered.

The app, Littergram, whose purpose is to promote urban cleanliness, recently came under fire from Instagram when they tried to register a trademark for their brand in December 2015. Although the app was officially launched in 2014, the owner Danny Lucas only decided to file a trademark application for his brand a year later. Therefore, it is not surprising that when the company did try to register their brand name the social network giant stepped in to knock them due to their similar name.

Mr Lucas appealed their decision to oppose his registration and even produced a video
directed at Mark Zuckerberg, the now owner of Instagram, asking him to reconsider his opposition and explaining that if he was not allowed to keep his name that all of their efforts to get the app off the ground would have been in vain. Instagram replied that they only objected to the name of the app and that they could not allow it to coexist alongside theirs due to the fact that they are both photo sharing apps using social media, which could be confusing for their clients.

Instagram has now given Mr Lucas three to sixth months to choose and launch a new name for his app. 

A trademark is a worthwhile investment as it will protect your brand and allow you to enforce your trademark rights over other companies that may infringe upon your mark. As Mr Lucas found out, even small businesses can come under fire from large corporations if they unknowingly infringe upon their trademarks. Before choosing your brand name for your business you should always do some research into the trademark names that are available in your chosen marketplace to ensure that you won’t meet any opposition. It is also recommended to file a trademark application before launching your product or services into the marketplace to ensure that they are fully protected.

For advice and more information on searching, acquiring, registering and enforcing Trademarks please visit our website,
Our unique database of trademarks for sale or license could save you time and help protect your brand.