Why Trademark Registration for Events Like “One Love Manchester” Matters

Ariana Grande recently sued the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Her application to register the “One Love Manchester” trademark was denied. This lawsuit highlights the importance of trademark registration for events. For businesses and individuals, protecting intellectual property (IP) is crucial. At Thrive IP®, we help you navigate these challenges.

Background of the Case

In 2017, a bombing at Grande’s Manchester concert killed nearly two dozen people and injured hundreds more. To support the victims, Grande organized the “One Love Manchester” benefit concert. GrandAri Inc., her company, sought to register “One Love Manchester” as a trademark.

The USPTO rejected the application. They cited potential confusion with trademarks like “One Love Holistics” and “One Love Organics.” Despite different contexts and purposes, the similarity of the term “One Love” was the issue.

The Lawsuit

GrandAri Inc. argues that the USPTO and the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) failed to consider key factors. These include the unique commercial impression and fame associated with “One Love Manchester.” They argue there was no evidence of actual consumer confusion.

The trademark aimed to symbolize comfort, love, and survival. It serves as a reminder of the Manchester tragedy. The lawsuit contends that the TTAB overlooked this emotional significance.

Importance of Intellectual Property Services

This case shows the complexities in securing trademarks, especially for significant events. IP services play a vital role in protecting unique brands and marks. Thrive IP® offers the expertise to navigate these complexities.

Why Hire an Intellectual Property Attorney?

1. Expertise and Knowledge: Intellectual Property attorneys have in-depth knowledge of trademark laws and procedures. They craft compelling applications and respond to office actions effectively.

2. Avoiding Common Pitfalls: Experienced attorneys identify and avoid potential conflicts with existing trademarks. This enhances the likelihood of successful registration.

3. Strategic Advice: Attorneys provide strategic advice on trademark selection. They help clients choose marks that are distinctive and less likely to face opposition.

4. Handling Legal Disputes: In cases of trademark denial or opposition, intellectual property attorneys represent clients in appeals and litigation.

Commonly Asked Questions About Trademark Registration

What is a trademark? A trademark is a symbol, word, or phrase legally registered to represent a company or product. It distinguishes it from others in the market.

Why was Grande’s trademark application denied? The USPTO denied the application due to potential consumer confusion with pre-existing trademarks containing the term “One Love.”

What factors does the USPTO consider in trademark applications? The USPTO evaluates the distinctiveness of the mark, its commercial impression, potential for consumer confusion, and its context.

Can I trademark a phrase associated with an event? Yes, but it can be challenging if similar phrases are already registered. Demonstrating the unique significance and distinctiveness of the phrase is essential.

How can an intellectual property attorney help in the trademark registration process? An attorney provides expertise, navigates the application process, avoids conflicts with existing marks, and represents clients in legal disputes.


Ariana Grande’s lawsuit against the USPTO highlights trademark law’s intricacies. It also underscores the importance of robust intellectual property services. By hiring a skilled intellectual property attorney from Thrive IP®, you can protect your brand and navigate trademark registration challenges effectively.

Note: For more information on trademarks and IP services, visit the USPTO Trademark Basics page. Explore how the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) works. Learn about the comprehensive Thrive IP® Services we offer.