Court turns down US rapper’s trade mark application

A popstar has failed to secure her signature trade mark in the US courts, reports have revealed.

According to The Guardian, US Rapper Cardi B’s application to trade mark her catchphrase “okurrr” has been turned down by the US Patent and Trademark Office.

Rejecting the application submitted on 12 March 2019, the courts said the term was “already widely used”.

The music artist, aged 26, had applied to use the trade mark across her merchandise and fashion lines, for products such as T-shirts, sweatshirts, pants, shorts, jackets, footwear, dresses and undergarments.

However, the US Patent and Trademark Office denied the request, ruling that the term – which is used as an alternative expression or variation of ‘ok’ – is a “commonplace term, message, or expression widely used by a variety of sources that merely conveys an ordinary, familiar, well-recognised concept or sentiment”.

The court also said the word was already commonly used by reality TV stars RuPaul and Khloe Kardashian, as well as in the drag community.

The rapper, whose real name is Belcalis Almanzar, had popularly used the phrase on a US talk show, hosted by Jimmy Fallon, with fans since believing that Cardi B had originated the term.

Speaking about the expression, she said: “It depends on the situation that you’re in. Like if somebody checks somebody, it’s like ‘Okurrr’.”

However, the latest ruling recognises that the singer did not conceive the concept and therefore is not entitled to lay claim to the expression. The star has six months to submit her response to the agency.

Two prior trademark applications are still pending under the same name, likely to face similar outcomes.

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