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Arm's Reach pushing WAHMs OUT of REACH!!! UGH!!!!! - Page 3

post #41 of 78
So those of us co-sleeping before 1997 were doing what? and our children were sleeping on what?

Well, my dd was sleeping in my bed, not a "co-sleeper". Honestly I think the term co sleeper to refer to an object someone sleeps in that is actually seperate from what others are sleeping in is inaccurate anyway. I mean really, no one is actually doing any co sleeping if they aren't sleeping in the same space.

edited for typos~ I really should proof read before I post
post #42 of 78
From what I understand the legal back and fourths get very expensive ... tens of thousands of dollars.

We are talking about small wahm businesses who can't afford 30,000 dollar lawsuits that are drawn on and on...
I think it is upposed to range from $15,00 and $25,000- That is ridiculous IMO. The system is so messed up- there is only justive and recourse for those who can afford it. I feel so disillusioned at times like these!

It's completely shadey and unethical, IMO.
ITA!!! Arm's Reach is really disgusting. i didn't even think they were that big of a company. They are in line with Starbucks and Wal-Mart, they might as well be them.

They aren't tradmarking the word co-sleeping or co-sleep. they are just trade marking the term co-sleeper meaning specifically ta sedond bed to hook to the family bed for the baby to sleep in. the more I think about the more sense it makes.

They are going to sue Baby Bunk for using the term co-sleep and co-sleeping on their website- terms they use to describe the ACT of co-sleeping which is NOT a part of the TM. Whether or not they trademarked co-sleeper and it's legit, which it isn't, IMO, a lawsuit, justified or unjustified can shut a business this small down in a second. They can count on the fact that she won't be able to afford it and eliminate the competition. Like I said earlier, I'm sure Arm's Reach spends more on marketing than Baby Bunk makes all year.
Sorry if that was poorly worded- I am angry and in a hurry.

There really should be a non-profit organization who could go after these big companies to keep them in check, but this is America- Land of Corporations- I doubt there's anything like that here.

Arduinna- I know what you mean. Dd sleeps with me too. I had a co-sleeper in the beginning, but she never slept in it, i just didn't want her to roll off the bed and I was also able to say "Yes I have a crib" so I didn't have to get into it with people. It is now in it's playpen form and full of junk and the bed is against the wall. If she slept in there I don't know if I would have considered her to be sleeping with us, it seemed too far away to put her, IMO, but the term co-sleeping is also used to describe when babies sleep in the same room, like in a bassinette near the bed. Whatever you'r definition is, some people have a really different one. i prefer the term sleep sharing or just plain ol' sleepin with the baby, but co-sleep is more generically used for sleeping in the same room with. Dr. Sears goes over that in The Baby Book which I reread after having Sephie and decided was too "mainstream" for me, :LOL but I am getting T
edited to fix quotes
post #43 of 78

Activist Boycott

I see a few things we can do...
1. tell all our friends about what Arm's Reach has done and tell everyone not to invest in this product. (if this kind of post is not allowed, I'm sorry I haven't read the rules of this forum, I'm not a typical poster here)
2. Anyone have a friend who's a lawyer who would be willing to help Baby Bunk out for a reduced cost or free? Let's start asking around.
and 3. Write to the US Patent and Trademark Office, the issuing agency and explain that "co-sleeper" is a common term and therefore should not have been issued as a trademark. Give examples of trademarked terms that have been refused. (yes, this is work on your part, but benefit for the great good.)
I work for a company that sells Baby Bunks and I think this is horrible. Everyone needs to band together to fit this. The owner of Baby Bunk is loosing a lot of money because of the metatag having to be changed. It's not fair and it's definitely a sneaky, underhanded thing to do to small business in general.
post #44 of 78
Good idea Electra! Thanks for helping us get off our butts!
post #45 of 78
Thread Starter 
After I found out about this, I added Baby Bunk to my store in hopes that it would help in some way, although we are a small store so I don't know if it will make too much impact. I certainly plan on telling anyone who'll listen about this, though, and I will encourage the WAHMs I encounter to consider supporting Baby Bunk and the other smaller sleep sharing companies out there!
post #46 of 78
I actually found out about this thread in the process of talking to Baby Bunk about having them at my store too. Once I heard what they are going through I really wanted to support them.
post #47 of 78
Lilyka - the more I think about it, the less sense it makes. We are definitely on different wave lengths.

Arms Reach's website states:
[quote]Co-sleeping is a term commonly used to describe the act of sleeping with one's own baby in the same bed. [\quote]
They admit it's a common term. Doesn't that make it not able to be a trademark? I know, they trademarked co-sleeper. But, by the info here, they are including co-sleeping and co-sleep in it as far as their competition goes.

And Rowan's Dad states that a trademark is an adjective, not a noun. What should the noun after co-sleeper be? What should the unit be called?
post #48 of 78
Bed, bassinet, cot etc etc.
post #49 of 78
But those are all items that are something different. They exist on their own. A co-sleeper doesn't. It's made to be attached to a bed.
post #50 of 78
Originally posted by madrone
But those are all items that are something different. They exist on their own. A co-sleeper doesn't. It's made to be attached to a bed.
Sez you! Note the following usage:






post #51 of 78
RD - all of those examples except for CraigsList were examples of Arm's Reach's usage. CraigsList called it a bed while Arm's Reach calls it a bassinet. My Oxford English dictionary says a bassinet is a *hooded cradle for a baby.* A co-sleeper obviously does not fit in that. Your dictionary site ( http://www.bartleby.com/cgi-bin/texi...inet&x=20&y=12 ) says that a bassinet is *An oblong basketlike bed for an infant*. A co-sleeper obviously does not fit in that either. If you get to the most basic generic definition of bed, then it is a bed. But this is something specific. I think I will make a poll in the family bed section asking them what they call it since AP families are the ones using this in daily language.

I think Arm's Reach admitting that co-sleep is a common verb is what this the most outlandish part. It is very common in the English language for nouns to be derived from verbs and vice-versa.
post #52 of 78
My examples were to show the TM usage (eg. TM (adjective) and noun (generic term). And only one was Arm's Reach usage, the rest were other parties featuring Arm's Reach's goods.

Has anyone taken the time to look up 'CO SLEEPER' or 'CO SLEEPING' or 'CO SLEEP' (or variations thereof) in any of the online dictionaries such as Bartleby's? I did. You may be surprised at the results.
post #53 of 78
I couldn't find it in the reference books. Which only means that AP isn't mainstream enough for co-sleep to be listed in any of the dictionaries yet. Not in my Oxford English dictionary either. But it seems like I remember some Harry Potter term being listed in the most recent addition.

I get your point behind it. Co-sleeping is not a common part of society. The US Patent and Trademark Office staff members who approved the trademark had probably never heard of the term to consider it a generic term. Which maybe that means that it has to either go to court where we (AP parents) point out that it is a generic term or we (AP parents) have to somehow get the US Patent and Trademark Office to realize that it is a generic term and pull the trademark.
post #54 of 78
Originally posted by madrone
The US Patent and Trademark Office staff members who approved the trademark had probably never heard of the term to consider it a generic term.
Actually, I know from experience that during the registration process an Examining Attorney at the Trademark Office will run a Lexis-Nexis database search of periodicals to check and see if a trademark that is the subject of an application to register is actually a term/phrase that is either 'generic' or descriptive. Neither of which are allowed to be registered.

Not to say that this term didn't slip under this bar. Just a note that even if the USPTO folk aren't themselves familiar with a term, there is a vetting process that can suss out whether said term is generic/descriptive.

Edited to add that the Canadian Trade Mark Office allowed the CO-SLEEPER mark to be registered too:
post #55 of 78
I am not sayiong they are being nice. or that I would ever buy thier productnow or recommend it to anyone. But, what they are doing does make good business sense and they are within thier legal rights etc. . . They have to protect the product they invented or someone else is going to TM it and screw them.

That doesn't mean if I were to buy a co-sleeper (meaning a glorified bassinet/pack and play that attatches to my bed
) that I would buyy thiers or recomend it to a friends because they should be kinder to people in thier business practices but none the less I think they are justified in Trademarking co-sleeper.

when you do a search on google Arms reach is already all that comes up. you don't get a photo album of co-sleeping children other brands of attatching cribs or other sleeping arrangement devices. And perhaps they have already changed it but at the baby bunk sight there wasn't a single reference to the word "co-sleeper". I think they will be just fine as a company. The two products aren't really that similar ad will apeal to different people and there are plenty of key words that they canadd tosraw people to them by way of search iengines.
post #56 of 78
The TM is WHY Arm's Reach is the nly one that comes up in searches. That's a big part of the problem.
post #57 of 78
Yes, the TM is why the METATAGs have been changed already, if they hadn't been changed in a timely fashion Arm's Reach would have a legal right to sue.
Baby Bunk had to remove its Co-sleeper metatag, they kept co-sleep but the hits aren't as many, thus loss in business.
While having a term TMed for yourself is legal, it just wasn't done nicely. And I really don't think co-sleeper should have been TMed by anyone, its abundant usage may be limited to AP families, but it's still a commonly used word by parents and pediatricians.
It's sad...
post #58 of 78
Originally posted by Electra375
Baby Bunk had to remove its Co-sleeper metatag, they kept co-sleep but the hits aren't as many, thus loss in business.
Just to repeat what I posted a long long time ago in this thread, use of a trademark as a metatag by a competitor is actionable under trademark law here in the U.S. and other jurisdictions:




Given that it has at least three applications to register BABY BUNK with the USPTO, my guess is that if a competitor used "Baby Bunk" as a metatag on its website that would raise the hackles of Baby Bunk.

As to the argument here that 'co-sleeper' is a generic term, may I suggest that you folks consider firing off some emails to the good Dr. Sears for the endorsement of the Arm's Reach CO-SLEEPER mark: http://www.armsreach.com/

Please note that I have no dog in this hunt, just trying to put some meat on the bones of arcane trademark law!
post #59 of 78
Ok but did you say "we just put our son down in his co-sleeper?" or did you say "we just put him in bed/his little bed/the toddler be next to ours/his side car bed . . . "
I guess we said "...his bed...".

With DD I know we've said we're co-sleeping, but she was in her sidecarred crib right next to me.

Maybe Baby Bunk should TM both Baby Bunk and the new usage of sidecar?
post #60 of 78
You have to look at more than the first page of google when you do a google search on co-sleeper to find the non-Arm's Reach stuff. You do find Snuggle Nest, Ducky Standards, Baby Bunk (references to it, not the company), and Universal. I didn't look at all of the pages, so there are probably a lot more in the 5,700 hits.

If Arm's Reach had invented the co-sleeper and copyrighted it, I would definitely think the trademark would be justified. But they didn't invent the co-sleeper. Seems like the first BabyBunk was built in 1980. And they didn't invent the verb co-sleep. It was used long before they were around. And I really doubt they were the first to use the word co-sleeper. But I don't have any old AP books or Mothering magazines to prove that.
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