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CEDIA Bests Bose In Trademark Dispute

5/03/2007 07:42:00 AM Eastern

Indianapolis — CEDIA (the Custom Electronic Design & Installation Association) will keep its Electronic Lifestyles trademark now that an appeal board of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office ruled against Bose’s 2003 petition to cancel it.

The board, said CEDIA, found “Bose’s accusations of fraud, abandonment and likelihood of confusion had no merit” and that Bose unreasonably delayed bringing its claims against CEDIA.

Bose filed the petition based upon what the company said were “incontestable long prior rights” to its famous trademark Lifestyle and after failing to amicably resolve the issue, a spokeswoman said at the time. “Bose has been selling Lifestyle music systems to consumers since 1990 [and] sold many Lifestyle music systems through custom installers in the custom electronic design and installation industry,” a spokeswoman said at the time.

“The Bose trademark for Lifestyle is incontestably registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office and confers on Bose the exclusive right to use Lifestyle in connection with music systems,” she had also said.

CEDIA said it began promoting its Electronic Lifestyles products, services and events as early as 1997 and in 1998 and 1999 received four federal trademark registrations for the term. The group uses the term in its Electronic Lifestyles Awards program, Electronic Lifestyles magazine and Electronic Lifestyles EXPO. CEDIA said it spend more than three-quarters of a million dollars in the past four years defending their right to use the mark.

A copy of the ruling is available here.

“Electronic Lifestyles is a spectacular asset that CEDIA has spent countless man hours and significant dollars building,” said Don Gilpin, executive director of CEDIA. “We will immediately expand the use of Electronic Lifestyles to continue creating new alliances and forging major in-roads with the architecture, building and interior design communities.”

Said former CEDIA president Ray Lepper, ”CEDIA members have spent an enormous amount of money on a lawsuit that we always believed was unjust. We look forward to receiving an apology from Bose — in whatever form it might take.”