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Legal to sell a product with 'Pontiac' on it? by Steel
Started on: 09-28-2014 07:20 AM
Replies: 5 (291 views)
Last post by: hyperv6 on 09-29-2014 07:13 AM
Steel
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Report this Post09-28-2014 07:20 AM Click Here to See the Profile for SteelSend a Private Message to SteelEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I'm assuming it's not legal to do so, but I'm wanting to produce a small item to replace a part of not only Fiero's but a few other older Pontiacs and I'm wondering if I can legally sell aftermarket parts with the name 'Pontiac' on the product?

[This message has been edited by Steel (edited 09-28-2014).]

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fierofool
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Report this Post09-28-2014 07:51 AM Click Here to See the Profile for fierofoolClick Here to visit fierofool's HomePageClick Here to Email fierofoolSend a Private Message to fierofoolEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
I believe you can use the word PONTIAC when referencing something, but not to produce a resale item with PONTIAC. GM still owns the name and without their approval and payment of royalties to them, it's solely theirs to use.
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hyperv6
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Report this Post09-28-2014 08:08 AM Click Here to See the Profile for hyperv6Send a Private Message to hyperv6Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by fierofool:

I believe you can use the word PONTIAC when referencing something, but not to produce a resale item with PONTIAC. GM still owns the name and without their approval and payment of royalties to them, it's solely theirs to use.


From my understanding you are correct but it gets even more complicated.

I know we have to word things on our web site carefully even on parts say for a Honda or other brand. You can list the part but you have to be careful on the wording as how it is stated.

Ford even went after some of their aftermarket restoration companies for using the word Mustang and even one Magazine that used the name.

This is why most MFG register their names. Some do it to make money but most do it so they have control over the use of the name. In many cases they charge a fee just to cover the legal cost. A lot of that has to do with the knock off items from China too. Many MFG do not want anything that can be tied to them on poor quality product.

It is a real mess anymore. My advice would be to contact GM or a lawyer before you make any product using a MFG name just to protect yourself.
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dobey
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Report this Post09-28-2014 03:00 PM Click Here to See the Profile for dobeySend a Private Message to dobeyEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
It depends on the usage, but in almost all cases, the answer is no, it's not legal to do so without licensing. Reproduction parts may have legal problems, even if the name is left off, as the design of the part, may be protected by copyright and patent law.
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Report this Post09-29-2014 01:26 AM Click Here to See the Profile for theogreClick Here to visit theogre's HomePageSend a Private Message to theogreEdit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by dobey:
It depends on the usage, but in almost all cases, the answer is no, it's not legal to do so without licensing. Reproduction parts may have legal problems, even if the name is left off, as the design of the part, may be protected by copyright and patent law.

Yup.

Was a guy here years ago got nasty gram from GM Legal for making/selling Fiero logo items and went Out of business.
More resent, Fiero news got notice from Haynes and took down most service info before GM could sent DMCA notices for PDF of Factory Service Manuals.

Why? GM makes millions to billions from licensing GM Trademarks etc.

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hyperv6
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Report this Post09-29-2014 07:13 AM Click Here to See the Profile for hyperv6Send a Private Message to hyperv6Edit/Delete MessageReply w/QuoteDirect Link to This Post
In most cases you can use the name of a model or car in the context of speaking of it or about it. You can also say the part is for a Pontiac Or Fiero but you can not say in an ad that say this part is a Pontiac Fiero Intake. You can say that this is a manifold for a Pontiac Fiero. If I recall that is how most have hit our web site at work.

As for who and how they hit people it depends on the company. GM is not too bad for the most as they do not go after everyone using the name for say like a car club. Now if it is a for profit business many times they will make you get permission. Ford a few years ago really went after many things and finally they backed off. Honda has been the most difficult for us.

The Generally Rule is that if you are out to make money with a product or service they can go after you if you use a registered name or image.

We went after someone that used a paint scheme from one of our race cars. They changed the name on the car but the graphics were all the same. It was made in China and we could not do much with the MFG but the distributor pulled it from the market.

I have noticed in the auto field that most companies let clubs etc. alone for now.

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