How to Trademark a Series of Books, Movies, or Other Artistic Works

Series Trademark Registration

How do you trademark the title of a book series, movie series, or other artistic works? This is a question authors and artists often ask.

Fortunately, the United States Trademark Office allows you to trademark a series of books, movies, or related titles of other artistic works.

The United States Trademark Office explains the answer:

To show that the name has been promoted and that others recognize the name as indicating the source of a series of written works, the applicant could submit evidence of advertising that promotes the name as the source of a series, third-party reviews showing others’ use of the name to refer to a series of works, or the name of the author/performer used on a display associated with the series of works. See In re First Draft Inc. , supra , citing In re Scholastic Inc., 23 USPQ2d 1774 (TTAB 1992) (THE MAGIC SCHOOL BUS held to function as a mark for a series of books, where the record contained evidence of use of the designation displayed prominently on many different book covers, as well as evidence that applicant promoted the term as a series title, that others used the designation in book reviews to refer to a series of books, and that purchasers recognized the designation as indicating the source of a series of books).
In other words, the process is very similar to filing a trademark for a “single creative work.” To file as a series, “an applicant must submit evidence that the title is used on at least two different creative works” and “evidence that the applicant intends to use the mark on a series is insufficient.” The bottom line is, you need to wait until your second book or movie comes out book comes out to show you have two different creative works.

For example, there are a number books in The Magic School Bus series, including

Each of these qualifies under The Magic School Bus series trademark.

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