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Can two dev companies have the "same" name?

Toque

Member
I really like Toque Games. Its very canadian and just fits. I searched and could not find another dev company using that name so went with it. But.........
I stumbled on Tuque Games which is the french spelling of Toque. A "u" instead of the "o".

They are a AAA studio console developer in Quebec. I am a n indi mobile hobby dev......not sure that even matters.

Do you see a problem with that or should I just pick a new name.....?

thanks
Toque
 

Wraithious

Member
Since its not the same name I'd say keep it, it's spelled different therefore it is not the same name (names are different than the meaning of words, meaning a name can be any sequence of characters which represent an individual (human, company, etc) where words are a specific sequence of Letters with an overall meaning)
 

Dog Slobber

Member
Whether two companies can have the same name is dependant on trademark law.

Is the name trademarked? Where is it trademarked? Is the name trademarkable?

I don't see any Trademark references towards Tuque Games (registered or non-registered) on their website. But, they could demonstrate prior use over you if that had to.


Since its not the same name I'd say keep it, it's spelled different therefore it is not the same name (names are different than the meaning of words, meaning a name can be any sequence of characters which represent an individual (human, company, etc) where words are a specific sequence of Letters with an overall meaning)
This is not correct.

Trademark violations can occur based on different spellings of similar words. It's determined if it is likely to cause confusion.

http://laws.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/T-13/section-6.html

You and they have almost identical names, and independent game developers, both in Canada. There is no doubt, this could cause confusion.

You could have problems.
 

Wraithious

Member
Whether two companies can have the same name is dependant on trademark law.

Is the name trademarked? Where is it trademarked? Is the name trademarkable?

I don't see any Trademark references towards Tuque Games (registered or non-registered) on their website. But, they could demonstrate prior use over you if that had to.




This is not correct.

Trademark violations can occur based on different spellings of similar words. It's determined if it is likely to cause confusion.

http://laws.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/T-13/section-6.html

You and they have almost identical names, and independent game developers, both in Canada. There is no doubt, this could cause confusion.

You could have problems.
I might be wrong but I think the 2 names in question are pronounced completly different, toque i would pronounce as 'Toke' and Tuque i would pronounce as Tuke so I wouldnt think that stipulation there would apply, but again I could be wrong because the op said those 2 words mean the exact same thing, but in 2 different languages.
 

Toque

Member
Whether two companies can have the same name is dependant on trademark law.

Is the name trademarked? Where is it trademarked? Is the name trademarkable?

I don't see any Trademark references towards Tuque Games (registered or non-registered) on their website. But, they could demonstrate prior use over you if that had to.




This is not correct.

Trademark violations can occur based on different spellings of similar words. It's determined if it is likely to cause confusion.

http://laws.justice.gc.ca/eng/acts/T-13/section-6.html

You and they have almost identical names, and independent game developers, both in Canada. There is no doubt, this could cause confusion.

You could have problems.



Pronunciation isn't really the issue.
My gut says this is a problem. Confusion is quite possible. They actually make good games. Crap...... I love my Toque.
I could just email them and ask if they care.......?
 

Dog Slobber

Member
I might be wrong but I think the 2 names in question are pronounced completly different, toque i would pronounce as 'Toke' and Tuque i would pronounce as Tuke so I wouldnt think that stipulation there would apply, but again I could be wrong because the op said those 2 words mean the exact same thing, but in 2 different languages.

Before your position was based solely on the different spelling, now you're basing your opinion based on the pronunciation. Which you've completely butchered. You're obviously not Canadian. The French and English pronunciation pronunciation of rogue are remarkably similar.

It's the potential for causing confusion. Which this obviously does.
 

Wraithious

Member
Before your position was based solely on the different spelling, now you're basing your opinion based on the pronunciation. Which you've completely butchered. You're obviously not Canadian. The French and English pronunciation pronunciation of rogue are remarkably similar.

It's the potential for causing confusion. Which this obviously does.
Yes then you posted that link and i read it... so my first assumption, theory and post was wrong, which led to my second post. The link you shared more supported the pronounciation theory as being acceptable if they aren't probounced the same, and no im not canadian at all but those 2 words sure are spelled like they would be pronounced differently.
 

Toque

Member
Ok. thanks . You confirmed its a problem. Im not out to screw the other guy. Just trying to do the right thing here.

What about Toque Apps? Vs Tuque Games. I think that would be different enough??
 

Will

Member
Ok. thanks . You confirmed its a problem. Im not out to screw the other guy. Just trying to do the right thing here.

What about Toque Apps? Vs Tuque Games. I think that would be different enough??
It looks like it would be different enough, but you can't be too sure. Remember you might run into the issue of SEO in the future with a similar name.
 

NeoShade

Member
If I were you, I'd do my utmost to try to avoid any confusion whatsoever. Sure, Toque Apps might look completely different to Tuque Games now, but given the obvious similarities it seems like you're just asking for trouble.

Try putting it in a different perspective - do you think you'd get away with calling your company Blzrd Games? It's spelled and probably even pronounced differently to Blizzard Entertainment, but there's definitely still some room for confusion.
At the end of the day, is it really worth the risk?
 

Mick

Member
Yep, try to avoid confusion if you can. It's getting harder and harder finding unique names, seems like all names are taken. At the end of the day, you will feel less worried if you know your company name is not close to the name of a big company.
 

Samuel Venable

Time Killer
Avoid using the word "pixel" and in a lot of cases you should be fine. Of course there are quite a few exceptions, why this topic was started being one of them.

I called myself time killer games but not officially because that name, you guessed it, been taken. I consider time kill games to be too close to my cutesy, make-belief company name, so nowadays, I use my real name (or Budgess Man Entertainment when I'm working with my friend Justin, that's his real company name).

If I ever develop a real team of my own, just like everyone else, I'll have to think of at least something. Even if it is gibberish, like "Budgess" is...

@OP you should consider following through with contacting them if you are serious about possibly keeping the name.
 

Toque

Member
Avoid using the word "pixel" and in a lot of cases you should be fine. Of course there are quite a few exceptions, why this topic was started being one of them.
Why avoid "pixel"? One thought was "Toque Pixels" or "Pixel Toque games. . But there are lots of options and thinking of other Canadian names and avoid Toque altogether. But like you said its hard to find names that dont have some similarity.......
 

Toque

Member
Don't pay attention to what he's saying.

Here's a good rule of thumb, when somebody makes a statement such as he did, and makes no attempt at explaining why, you should question their credibility.

All opinions are appreciated. Brainstorming some new canuck names.
 

Samuel Venable

Time Killer
The main reason I say avoid using pixel is that so many people use it that the word loses originality, and thus a lot of the names using pixel are already taken. Similar is true for game titles. There are a lot of game titles with "pixel" in it. It's like the word "adventure" in game titles. Way too common.
 

Toque

Member
The main reason I say avoid using pixel is that so many people use it that the word loses originality, and thus a lot of the names using pixel are already taken. Similar is true for game titles. There are a lot of game titles with "pixel" in it. It's like the word "adventure" in game titles. Way too common.
Thats a fair comment. I have a few more ideas that google , stores etc doesn't seem to come up with anything.
 

Toque

Member
Well, I don't know what a Mela is, but it seems to not have any game-related results on the first page of a google search.

It was a film in 2000, not sure if that is a problem. If all else fails, resort to your custom gibberish or real-life legal name, depending on what you are comfortable with. :)

No worries. I have other names.

Mela is Apple in Italian. Do you own the same word in other languages?

I don’t have the money to defend my name so I will just change it. I was just interested in your opinions.

Thanks.
 

Toque

Member
The point is someone has the French word for hat. I used English version. Do patents carry over different languages.
 

Samuel Venable

Time Killer
Well, do they call Apple "Mela" in reference to the company once thriving before Steve Jobs passed away, in Italy? (I have no idea if that makes a difference, actually)
 

Toque

Member
Most Italians would say Apple but some do say Mela.

I emailed the company out of curiosity if they care. I will let you know.

My 12 cents a day of revenue mobile dev company hangs in the balance........
 
A

Arheddis Varkenjaab

Guest
The point is someone has the French word for hat. I used English version. Do patents carry over different languages.
Pretty sure Fedora Linux wont sure you for calling your company 'Hat'.
 

Toque

Member
Pretty sure Fedora Linux wont sure you for calling your company 'Hat'.
Your probably right!!!!! But what if the translation to english was Fedoru and I was a hat company. So now you have a Fedora in Italian and english translation was Fedora and I made hats. Unfortunately we are dim witted developers and not lawyers! But I suspect that could be a legal and moral problem.

Im creative I will come up with another and original name and logo. Working on it right now.........
 

Maximiliano

Member
I don't think you'd have a problem calling a company mela as long as you're not making computers or phones. The same with hats. But in your case since you're both making games I could see a problem. Let us know what they reply.
 
If there is any doubt at all, I'd just avoid the issue. If Mela means Apple, I'd just avoid it all together. Apple is a software developer, you are a software developer. Apple is very protective of their IP.
 

Dog Slobber

Member
People here keep focusing on a single element.

Trademark is not based solely on:
  • The sharing of a common word
  • The similarity of sounds
  • Ownership of words
  • Translation to another language
  • etc.
Trademark and infringement is often multifaceted and subjective. One of the primary tenants of Trademark infringement is the likelihood to create confusion. This is entrenched in the US Patent office description, the EU', the Canadian and likely all western countries.

http://ipright.eu/trademark-regulation/en/the-law-relating-to-trademarks/article-8
EU Trademark article 8.1 said:
1. Upon opposition by the proprietor of an earlier trade mark, the trade mark applied for shall not be registered:
  • (a) if it is identical with the earlier trade mark and the goods or services for which registration is applied for are identical with the goods or services for which the earlier trade mark is protected;
  • (b) if, because of its identity with, or similarity to, the earlier trade mark and the identity or similarity of the goods or services covered by the trade marks there exists a likelihood of confusion on the part of the public in the territory in which the earlier trade mark is protected; the likelihood of confusion includes the likelihood of association with the earlier trade mark.
https://tmep.uspto.gov/RDMS/TMEP/current#/current/TMEP-1200d1e5044.html

USPTO said:
1207.01 Likelihood of Confusion
In the ex parte examination of a trademark application, a refusal under §2(d) is normally based on the examining attorney’s conclusion that the applicant’s mark, as used on or in connection with the specified goods or services, so resembles a registered mark as to be likely to cause confusion.
I've previously posted the Canadian Trademark act, but all that did is cause one poster to see the word "sound", come to the conclusion that two words that he didn't know how to pronounce, were sufficiently different sounding that he could give advice that it wasn't a problem.

All opinions are appreciated. Brainstorming some new canuck names.
As much as you want to be agreeable and inclusive, when you are looking to find out fact, then no. All opinions should not be encouraged and brainstorming is not a good tool.

There are many people in this topic who do not know what they are talking about. They are advising you on matters not based on anything concrete. And I'm not interested in competing with them.

Good luck.
 
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Juju

Member
There's a basic principle when it comes to trademarks: "a moron in a hurry". If only a moron in a hurry would confuse the two trademarks, then the trademarks are considered different enough to both be viable. Whether or not the two companies are in the same industry is also a factor (consider Apple Inc. versus Apple Corps).

Are "Tuque" and "Toque" sufficiently different to qualify? In my opinion, they are too similar. A reasonable person could confuse the two. You also have "Torque" which is a 3D engine to add another layer of potential confusion.

Talk to a trademark lawyer before proceeding. You're right to be worried.
 

Toque

Member
So the company emailed back to me. Nice Canadians. They even game me their games for free!! Here is their response. I've decided and picked a new name anyways but thought people might find it interesting. Thanks so much for your input and thoughts on the topic.
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
"Thanks for reaching out. As a token of our appreciation I'm happy to send you game code for our last game - Livelock - on the platform of your choice. PS4, Xbox One or PC-Steam.

I think it's best for you if you find a more unique name given that it is so close to "Tuque". But if you choose to use it, we don't really care.

Cheers,

- Jeff"
 
A

Arheddis Varkenjaab

Guest
Your probably right!!!!! But what if the translation to english was Fedoru and I was a hat company. So now you have a Fedora in Italian and english translation was Fedora and I made hats. Unfortunately we are dim witted developers and not lawyers! But I suspect that could be a legal and moral problem.

Im creative I will come up with another and original name and logo. Working on it right now.........
I can't see a problem.

If you call your company 'Sultana', I don't believe that Apple could legally give you any grief.
 
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