Generic trademark

genericized trademarkgenericizedgenericgenericised trademarkgeneric termgenericallygeneric namegenericizationgenericisedbrandnomer
A generic trademark, also known as a genericized trademark or proprietary eponym, is a trademark or brand name that, due to its popularity or significance, has become the generic name for, or synonymous with, a general class of product or service, usually against the intentions of the trademark's holder.wikipedia
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ChapStick

Chap Stick
Thermos, Kleenex, ChapStick, Aspirin, Dumpster, Band-Aid, Velcro, Hoover, Jet Ski and Speedo are examples of trademarks that have become genericized in the US and elsewhere.
Due to its popularity, the term has become a genericized trademark.

The Hoover Company

HooverHoover CompanyHoover Ltd
Thermos, Kleenex, ChapStick, Aspirin, Dumpster, Band-Aid, Velcro, Hoover, Jet Ski and Speedo are examples of trademarks that have become genericized in the US and elsewhere.
Hoover is a vacuum cleaner company founded in Ohio in the US. It also established a major base in the United Kingdom and mostly in the 20th century it dominated the electric vacuum cleaner industry, to the point where the Hoover brand name became synonymous with vacuum cleaners and vacuuming in the United Kingdom and Ireland.

Aspirin

acetylsalicylic acidASAbaby aspirin
Thermos, Kleenex, ChapStick, Aspirin, Dumpster, Band-Aid, Velcro, Hoover, Jet Ski and Speedo are examples of trademarks that have become genericized in the US and elsewhere.
The word Aspirin was Bayer's brand name; however, their rights to the trademark were lost or sold in many countries.

Velcro

human flyhook-and-loophook-and-loop fasteners
Thermos, Kleenex, ChapStick, Aspirin, Dumpster, Band-Aid, Velcro, Hoover, Jet Ski and Speedo are examples of trademarks that have become genericized in the US and elsewhere.
It is known for being the original patentor of the hook-and-loop fastener, to which it has (over its objections ) lent the generic name "velcro."

Dumpster

dumpstersdumpster bodiesDumpster rental
Thermos, Kleenex, ChapStick, Aspirin, Dumpster, Band-Aid, Velcro, Hoover, Jet Ski and Speedo are examples of trademarks that have become genericized in the US and elsewhere.
The word is a generic trademark of Dumpster, an American brand name for a specific design.

Vacuum flask

thermosdewarthermos flask
Thermos, Kleenex, ChapStick, Aspirin, Dumpster, Band-Aid, Velcro, Hoover, Jet Ski and Speedo are examples of trademarks that have become genericized in the US and elsewhere.
The name later became a genericized trademark after the term "thermos" became the household name for such a liquid container.

Trademark

trademarkstrade marktrademarked
A generic trademark, also known as a genericized trademark or proprietary eponym, is a trademark or brand name that, due to its popularity or significance, has become the generic name for, or synonymous with, a general class of product or service, usually against the intentions of the trademark's holder. Trademark erosion, or genericization, is a special case of antonomasia related to trademarks.
A trademark which is popularly used to describe a product or service (rather than to distinguish the product or services from those of third parties) is sometimes known as a genericized trademark.

Jet Ski

jet skiingjet-skijet-skiing
Thermos, Kleenex, ChapStick, Aspirin, Dumpster, Band-Aid, Velcro, Hoover, Jet Ski and Speedo are examples of trademarks that have become genericized in the US and elsewhere.
The term is often used generically to refer to any type of personal watercraft used mainly for recreation, and it is also used as a verb to describe the use of any type of PWC.

Kleenex

Thermos, Kleenex, ChapStick, Aspirin, Dumpster, Band-Aid, Velcro, Hoover, Jet Ski and Speedo are examples of trademarks that have become genericized in the US and elsewhere.
Often used informally as a genericized trademark for facial tissue in the United States, the name Kleenex is a registered trademark of Kimberly-Clark Worldwide, Inc. Kleenex products are manufactured in 30 countries and sold in more than 170 countries.

Brand

brand namemarquebrands
A generic trademark, also known as a genericized trademark or proprietary eponym, is a trademark or brand name that, due to its popularity or significance, has become the generic name for, or synonymous with, a general class of product or service, usually against the intentions of the trademark's holder.
A brandnomer is a brand name that has colloquially become a generic term for a product or service, such as Band-Aid, Nylon, or Kleenex—which are often used to describe any brand of adhesive bandage; any type of hosiery; or any brand of facial tissue respectively.

Mind share

mindsharemind-share
This typically happens when the products or services with which the trademark is associated have acquired substantial market dominance or mind share, such that the primary meaning of the genericized trademark becomes the product or service itself rather than an indication of source for the product or service. Some examples of the latter type from the vocabulary of physicians include the names Luer-Lok (Luer lock), Phoroptor (phoropter), and Port-a-Cath (portacath), which have genericized mind share (among physicians) because (1) the users may not realize that the term is a brand name rather than a medical eponym or generic-etymology term, and (2) no alternative generic name for the idea readily comes to mind.
A legal risk of such popularity is that the name may become so widely accepted that it becomes a generic term and loses trademark protection.

Speedo

Speedo Fastskin
Thermos, Kleenex, ChapStick, Aspirin, Dumpster, Band-Aid, Velcro, Hoover, Jet Ski and Speedo are examples of trademarks that have become genericized in the US and elsewhere.
Although the brand name Speedo is often genericised to refer to any style of men's swim briefs, these account for less than 2% of the company's sales.

Band-Aid

band-aidsbandaidbandage
Thermos, Kleenex, ChapStick, Aspirin, Dumpster, Band-Aid, Velcro, Hoover, Jet Ski and Speedo are examples of trademarks that have become genericized in the US and elsewhere.
Band-Aid arguably has, over time, become a generic term in the United States, and a generic term cannot function as a trademark; but Johnson & Johnson has registered Band-Aid as a trademark on the Principal Register of the United States Patent and Trademark Office, and the registration is valid and legal.

Trademark infringement

infringementtrademarktrademark violation
This process typically occurs over a period of time in which a mark is not used as a trademark (i.e., where it is not used to exclusively identify the products or services of a particular business), where a mark falls into disuse entirely, or where the trademark owner does not enforce its rights through actions for passing off or trademark infringement.
Other defenses include genericness, functionality, abandonment, or fair use.

Adobe Photoshop

PhotoshopPSDPhotoshopped
Adobe Systems is working to prevent the genericization of their trademarks, such as Photoshop, but has had mixed success.
Since then, it has become the de facto industry standard in raster graphics editing, to the point that Photoshop has become a generic trademark leading to its use as a verb such as "to photoshop an image," "photoshopping" and "photoshop contest", though Adobe discourages such use.

Phoropter

competing versionsPhoroptor (phoropter)
Some examples of the latter type from the vocabulary of physicians include the names Luer-Lok (Luer lock), Phoroptor (phoropter), and Port-a-Cath (portacath), which have genericized mind share (among physicians) because (1) the users may not realize that the term is a brand name rather than a medical eponym or generic-etymology term, and (2) no alternative generic name for the idea readily comes to mind.
DeZeng was purchased in 1925 by American Optical of Massachusetts, who continued to market the product, but the term, often spelled phoropter, has become a genericised trademark for all brands of modern vision testers, especially since AO's main competitor, Bausch and Lomb, stopped making their Greens' Refractor in 1970s.

Photocopier

photocopyingphotocopyphotocopied
Xerox Corporation attempted to prevent the genericization of its core trademark through an extensive public relations campaign advising consumers to "photocopy" instead of "xerox" documents.
Xerox has actively fought to prevent "Xerox" from becoming a genericized trademark.

Geographical indications and traditional specialities in the European Union

protected designation of originPDOprotected geographical indication
Since 2003, the European Union has actively sought to restrict the use of geographical indications by third parties outside the EU by enforcing laws regarding "protected designation of origin".
A recurrent objection is that the proposed denomination is a generic term for the product in question: generic names cannot be registered but, once registered, the denominations are protected from genericisation.

Antonomasia

Trademark erosion, or genericization, is a special case of antonomasia related to trademarks.
Trademark erosion

Nintendo

Nintendo of AmericaNintendo Co., Ltd.NES
Nintendo is an example of a brand that successfully fought trademark erosion, having managed to replace excessive use of its name by the then-neologism game console.
To prevent their trademark from becoming generic, Nintendo pushed usage of the term "game console", and succeeded in preserving their trademark.

Public domain

public domain resourcepublic-domainPD
In many legal systems (e.g., in the United States but not in Germany) a generic mark forms part of the public domain and can be commercially exploited by anyone.
For a trademark registration to remain valid, the owner must continue to use it. In some circumstances, such as disuse, failure to assert trademark rights, or common usage by the public without regard for its intended use, it could become generic, and therefore part of the public domain.

Geographical indication

Australian Geographical Indicationgeographical indicationsappellation of origin
Since 2003, the European Union has actively sought to restrict the use of geographical indications by third parties outside the EU by enforcing laws regarding "protected designation of origin".
Of course, what is considered a very specific term for a well-known local specialty in one country may constitute a generic term or genericized trademark for that type of product.

Eponym

eponymousself-titledeponyms
Eponym
In intellectual property law an eponym can refer to a generic trademark or brand name, a form of metonymy, such as aspirin, heroin and thermos in the United States.

Trademark distinctiveness

generic namegeneric termgeneric
Most often, genericization occurs because of heavy advertising that fails to provide an alternative generic name or that uses the trademark in similar fashion to generic terms.
Marks which become generic after losing distinctive character are known as genericized trademarks.

Google

Google Inc.Google, Inc.Googling
Google has gone to lengths to prevent this process, discouraging publications from using the term 'googling' in reference to Web searches.
In 2017, David Elliot and Chris Gillespie argued before the Ninth Circuit of the United States Court of Appeals that "google" had suffered genericide.