Trademark Class 41 involves entertainment and education services.
As an overview, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) divides all goods and services into 45 distinct categories (also called “International Classes”). Trademark Classes 1 to 34 deal with goods, whereas Classes 35 to 45 involve services. This gives applicants a greater degree of predictability when applying for a trademark since they can search for conflicting names in the same or similar Trademark Class.
If you want to trademark a brand for education, blogging, sports, or entertainment services, select Trademark Class 41.
Below, I provide an overview of Class 41, including:
- The types of services found within this Trademark Class
- Services are not within Trademark Class 41
- Related or “Coordinated” Classes to Trademark Class 41
- Examples of typical International Class 41 services
Services Found in Trademark Class 41
As outlined above, Trademark Class 41 includes “all forms of education or training, services having the basic aim of the entertainment, amusement or recreation of people.” TMEP § 1401.02(a). In addition, it includes art, writings, music, or video displays for educational or entertainment purposes. Id.
Services normally found within Class 41 include art/entertainment, educational, and cultural services.
Trademark Class 41 is one of the more popular Classes. Applicants that apply in Class 41 often consider applying in other Classes. Those other Classes are:
- 9 (“Electrical and scientific apparatus”)
- 25 (“Apparel”)
- 35 (“Advertising and business”)
- 38 (“Broadcasting and telecommunications”)
- 42 (“Computers and software”)
Examples Within The Class
If the primary purpose of entertainment or educational services to arrange or exhibit public displays for art, music, video, then Trademark Class 41 is appropriate. This is true, even if the videos are displayed on the internet.
Let’s go over some Trademark Class 41 examples.
- Music and Video Services: Non-downloadable videos, podcast production music videos, movies, film development and production, video streaming, online gaming, lotteries and gambling services, general photography, photographic reporting, displaying photographs.
- Sports and Recreation Services: Organizing sports and entertainment services, such as, basketball, baseball, soccer, and football leagues, sports coaching, rental of gym facilities, renting sports equipment, camping services, yoga classes.
- Other Services: Ticketing and book services for entertainment or educational purposes
- Writing and Cultural Services: screenplay, songs, publishing services, news and reporting services, blogging for education or entertainment, language translation, providing language interpretation services
- Educational Services: Mobile libraries, book rentals, tutoring, educational podcasts,
Services Not Within the Class
It is easy to think that some goods and/or services fall into Trademark Class 41. However, be on the lookout for certain goods and/or services that are not within the scope of Class 41. International Class 41 does not include the following:
- Exhibitions for commercial purposes (Class 35)
- Press releases (Class 35)
- Video and audio broadcasting (Class 38)*
- Spas (Class 43)
- Wedding planners (Class 45)
* This is a common error made by unrepresented clients and less experienced attorneys confusing video or podcast streaming services in Class 41 with “broadcast” services in Class 38.
Related or Coordinated Classes
Class 41 overlaps with Trademark Classes 35 through 45. These are known as related or “Coordinated Classes” at the USPTO. Here, the reason Coordinated Classes are important is because the USPTO Examining Attorneys do not search for exactly the same Trademark Class. Instead, they search for similar or Classes.
If you find your trademark overlapping with a Coordinated Class, you should carefully evaluate the degree to which their appearance, sound, and goods and/or services overlap.
Trademark Class 41 Examples
Common Class 41 examples include some very famous names:
- MRBEAST (U.S. Reg. No. 5930575) – “entertainment services, namely, providing online non-downloadable videos featuring stunts, pranks, challenges and monetary giveaways.”
- KHAN ACADEMY (U.S. Reg. No. 4168128) – “education courses, instructions, lectures, classes.”
- MARCH MADNESS (U.S. Reg. No. 3025527) –“providing sports information via the Internet”
You can trademark in Trademark Class 41 even if the same name exists in another Trademark Class or in the same or similar Trademark Class.
Below, I provide you some examples.
Example 1: Different Trademark Classes
Imagine this scenario: You want to trademark entertainment services for your rock-n-roll brand, ROK’IN OUT. Your brand performs in-person, and provides online entertainment services. Upon searching the USPTO database, you find out that another company owns to the brand name ROK’IN OUT, and sells adventure climbing harnesses under that mark.
As such, can you trademark your brand?
Here, the answer is “yes,” since entertainment services fall into Class 41 and climbing gear, such as safety harnesses, is found in Class 28, there is no likelihood of confusion.
Example 2: Trademark Class 41 and a Similar Class
As explained above, some Trademark Classes are similar to Class 41. What if instead of adventure climbing harnesses, the other company used ROK’IN OUT for retail store services featuring furniture in Class 35?
Here, the answer is that even though Class 35 is a service Class, you may still file a trademark in Trademark Class 41 because the services, while similar are unrelated.
Example 3: Two Trademarks in the Same Class
Let us change the example even more and make it the same Trademark Class. Suppose the other company offers “On-line journals, namely, blogs featuring high school math and science” in Class 41.
Here, even though both trademarks are in the same Trademark Class, the services are still highly dissimilar. It is simply not plausible that a consumer would confuse the services between the two.
However, what if the services are similar? Imagine if the company offered “On-line journals, namely, blogs featuring music reviews” in Class 41.
Now, there is a greater risk that the USPTO will issue a Likelihood of Confusion refusal. Accordingly, in that specific instance, I would encourage you to consult with a qualified trademark attorney.
Summary and Recommendation
In summary, Trademark Class 41 is a service class featuring entertainment, recreational, teaching, and educational services. Class 41 is a popular class and includes audio and video content streaming, podcasts, blogging, educational services, writing, and organizing sports competitions. If you sell goods, Class 41 may not be the best fit for your case. However, if you intend to offer educational or entertainment services, then you want to consider Trademark Class 41.
Finally, if you are ready to file in Trademark Class 41 or another Class, speaking with Syed Law can help you save on costs long-term, expedite the trademark process, and avoid rejection letters. Contact us today.