Yahoo! Inc certainly had reason to yodel after obtaining permanent injunction against Defendants infringing the YAHOO trade mark. What’s more, the court assessed in excess of Rs. 38 lakh towards damages and legal cost in favour of Yahoo, making it possibly one of the highest sums awarded in a trade mark infringement matter.
Yahoo, known best for its vast internet-centric businesses, was appreciated by the court to be “one of the most recognized brands in the world”, and that YAHOO is listed as a “Well Known Mark” with Controller General of Patents Design & Trade Marks.
What is perhaps less known is that the mark and trade name are not confined to computer and internet related services, but extend to a wide variety products such as apparel and office supplies. The famous mark is also registered under Classes 29 and 30 in the trade mark register, covering a wide variety of foods, beverages and products used in the preparation thereof.
The court determined Defendants’ use of the YAHOO mark in relation to their snack foods to be “piggybacking” on Yahoo’s reputation and the tactic was indubitably dishonest.
The court had earlier granted an ex parte order restraining the Defendants from manufacturing, selling and propagating in any manner snack foods using the YAHOO mark.
Yahoo! Inc v Sanjay Patel & Ors.