The major trading card companies are often at odds, acting like mother bears trying to keep predators away from their cubs. It may seem silly to outsiders, but they’re very protective of their respective licenses and their own trademarks.
Topps, which stepped away from decades of gray cardboard some 21 baseball season ago, has since brought numerous new brands into the hobby. Some have become recognized brands in the industry and that fact is at the heart of the latest court filings between two rivals in the industry.
Topps has asked the U.S. Trademark Office to deny registration of Panini’s attempt to grab a mark they’re calling “Chromium” and “Panini Chromium”. The New York-based company says that’s a ripoff of the “Chrome” brand Topps has utilized with its Bowman and Topps lines for many years. Topps says allowing Panini to use those names would cause consumer confusion. And, they say, Panini is doing it on purpose.
Panini may have filed two names hoping to get both approved but willing to settle for the one that includes their brand name.
But aren’t “chrome” and “platinum” general terms for metals? That sort of complicates things.