“Let’s Play” securely in the public domain as USPTO rejects Sony’s trademark bid as “merely descriptive”

Two weeks ago, on behalf of the gaming community, The McArthur Law Firm filed a Letter of Protest with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”). The letter spoke out against Sony’s attempt to trademark the term “Let’s Play” for video game streaming. In the letter, we cited over 50 examples of how Let’s Play is generic and descriptive of video game streaming.

The gaming community spoke, and the USPTO listened! The USPTO has finally agreed that “Let’s Play” is a common term in the industry and it issued a strong rebuke of Sony’s attempt to monopolize the term.

Below is a screenshot of the relevant portion of the USPTO’s argument:

Lets Play Descriptiveness Rejection

The previous “rejection,” widely misreported a few weeks ago, was in reality just a minor nuisance to Sony. This rejection is far more lethal to Sony’s trademark application. To support its rejection, the USPTO’s evidence consisted entirely of the first two sources included in our Letter of Protest: the Wikipedia page for Let’s Play and the /r/letsplay subreddit.

Given the strength of this evidence, we are confident that Sony will not be able to overcome this rejection. The term “Let’s Play” is now forever in the public domain.

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