Thursday, August 6, 2009

A "Onesie" by any other name....

I was a victim of “Onesiegate” !! I was surprised but not shocked. I can’t say I was blindsided either. There had been enough chatter about Gerber enforcing their trademark rights but I didn’t heed the warnings. After all, everybody else was doing it.

Heck, enforcement came the day after I ran a Guest Blog here about trademarks, copyrights, etc. and their infringements and the day before I ran a scheduled Working the Shows Wednesday article warning about the use of licensed characters. The irony is, the only item Etsy picked on in my shop was an actual Gerber Onesie!! There were others they could have jumped on but they didn’t. (I corrected those listings immediately when I became aware of the situation.)

The good news is, Etsy deactivated that one listing while I was on vacation and my shop was marked that no sales would be processed until my return date so I know I didn’t lose any sales. I was able to correct the alleged infringements before my scheduled reopening. I do feel sorry for those who had many items deactivated.

“Onesie” is a trademarked brand name owned by Gerber. You can not use it as a generic term for any non-Gerber one-piece snap-crotch underwear for infants. So, what can you call such a garment? That last description is a little long and awkward. Etsy sellers have been scrambling to find just the right term for the last few weeks. The winner seems to be “bodysuit” or “infant bodysuit.” Some have gone for the terms “romper” or “creeper.” I’ve seen others use the term “infant jumpsuit.” I personally have gone with “bodysuit” which is also used on the generic wrappers I’ve seen.

So, what if you do actually use a Gerber garment? Can you call it a “Onsesie”? Technically, yes, but there are specific guidelines on how to correctly call it a “Onesie.”

You must photograph the item so as to clearly show the trademarked Gerber baby on the neck tag and/or the Onesie tag attached to the leg binding. You must correctly refer to the item as a “Onesie brand” with the required ® emblem after the name and it won’t hurt to mention it IS a genuine Gerber product.

I, personally, found it easier to simply rewrite my titles and descriptions as I would otherwise have had to re-photo many of my products to clearly show the Gerber baby and Onesie label. I also did not want to lock myself in as I sometimes need to use a different brand to complete an order in a specific size in a timely manner. Now that I sell “infant bodysuits”, I have leeway to use a Hanes or Circo brand when necessary.

While I was on vacation, a number of Guest Bloggers helped me out. Selma from WoollyBoo presented some excellent MUST READ info on protecting your work from others and your personal assets, should someone be injured by one of your creations. If you missed this when it ran a few weeks back, PLEASE take time to read this important information NOW. Selma did a fantastic job of describing various aspects of these issues and presenting the facts in clear, concise language that we can all understand.

Originally run here on 7/20/09

Reading the Community pages on Etsy, I’ve noticed a lot of posts about various copyright, trademark, or patent infringements, especially in the last few months. And the community members have given some really good advice. To make sure the information is available to all Etsians, I’ve consolidated it into this article. I know it looks a little long, but trust me, you want to read this. If not for any other reason than for your general education. For those that decide to take this route, I hope these simple steps help you along.

Protect yourself and your assets

There has been some discussion whether or not it is necessary for Etsy Sellers to incorporate. The short answer is no. But, here area few things you should consider. For example, do you own a home or a car or some stocks? Why am I asking this? Bear with me, since I have one more question for you. What happens when one of your customers develops a serious allergy that lands them in the hospital, and the doctors trace the allergy to some of the ingredients in your product? Then your customer decides to sue you, regardless of how much they like you or your product. Health care bills are very high these days. So, the judge says you now have to pay for the hospital bills. You say: “I can’t afford it. I’ve only sold three pieces this month for a total profit of $25.” Then the judge says: “What else do you have that we can sell?” See where I’m going with this? Protect yourself. It’s only a few minutes and less than $150 to register a company on your own in any of the states. Or you can pay Legal Zoom $650 and click your mouse twice. Whichever. No judgment here.

Here are the links to a few states and their Department of State or Secretary of State offices that have jurisdiction over the new business registrations:

I’ve also included a link for Delaware, since most large companies choose to register there. Why? Delaware has very favorable corporate laws. It’s simple as that. But, sellers beware - should you choose to register in Delaware, most other states require you to file “Foreign Entity” registration, otherwise you can’t operate. That’s another $125.

Note: To maintain the registration, you are required to pay an annual tax. In Delaware, it is $250.

Congratulations, you now have a profound right to collect Sales Tax, which you can fork over immediately to your state government and hope they repair the highways as they have been promising for years.

Now that the State knows I exist, what next?

Now comes the tricky part: if you only registered with your respective state, when you go to open your checking account, the bank is asking for your FEIN. FEIN? What is FEIN?

FEIN is your Federal Employee Identification Number. Technically, you only need it if you have employees. But, if you’ve done this before, you know that everyone and their mother is asking for your FEIN - your bank, your credit card issuer, UPS, FedEx, your local Costco. No kidding. It’s like the Social Security Number for your business. Here is the link where you can apply for one:

Protect your name and your logo

This refers to the name of your company (your name could be Sarah Jones, and you incorporated as Sarah Jones, Inc. or Sarah Jones, L.L.C.) as well as the name of your products, which could be one and the same, as in my case (Woolly Boo L.L.C., the owner of Woolly Boo TM). I read a post recently where one of the comments stated that more and more sellers are using a TM sign next to their names and the names of their products. Then, shortly after that, there was another post from a different seller about Taggies TM, and, I am paraphrasing, a comment to the effect of “try making something with tags and see how fast you get slapped with a lawsuit.” So, instead of despairing about yet another highway robbery of your name, why not be on the other end of the equation and be the one slapping people with lawsuits. Granted, we are artists who want to create and not be bothered with all this paperwork. To those I say, I hope you have a really, really good lawyer or nerves of steel and really thick skin.

To protect your name and logo, you have to file a claim with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. You can find the instructions and forms here:

Note #1: You don’t have to file a Trademark protection in order to use the (“TM”) designation. Why? Because it’s what is called a “common law” - when you start using (“TM”), you’ve put the world on notice that this is your property and nobody else has a right to use it. Very simple.

Note #2: Should you still decide to register your name and your logo, please be aware that it costs $250 per category - $250 for the name and $250 for the logo. If you decide to register colors in the logo, or specific font, that’s another $250 each. So, take it slow. To protect the broadest spectrum of rights, stick to the simplest options. For example: Tribeca Film Festival in New York only registered their name, which gives them a very wide field of operation. It also allows them to change their logo, poster concept, and color combination every year, if they decide to do so.

Note #3: Before you do anything, check the trademark database, TESS. Just in case someone already had a same idea as you.

Note #4: The Service Mark (“SM”) also falls under this category, as I’ve noticed a few Sellers that provide services on Etsy.

Protect your words and images

Copyright infringement seems to be a HUGE issue on Etsy. Sellers are lifting the whole shop and product descriptions. They’ve also taken photos, regardless of how bad the resolution, and used them, if not on Etsy, then on other unrelated sites. First of all, that is very uncool. Period. If you have a writer’s block, well there are a number of people on Etsy that can help you with that. Maybe even people that are selling the same product as you. Just ask.

The copyright law is rather simple as it relates to Etsy Sellers. To quote USPTO: “The copyright protects the form of expression rather than the subject matter of the writing. For example, a description of a machine could be copyrighted, but this would only prevent others from copying the description; it would not prevent others from writing a description of their own or from making and using the machine.” See, simple.

If you want to proceed with registration, here is the link:

The fees are actually not that cost prohibitive, if you are filing just a few things.

Note: It used to be required to write “All Rights Reserved” or “Copyright by…” or (c) on your work, but that is no longer the case. Most nations in the world now follow what is known as Berne Copyright convention. What that means is that everything that was created in the U.S. after April 1, 1986 is protected regardless if you can see the notice or not. But, it is also true that if you post a notice, it will make people think twice about copying your work without notice (see the end of this article).

Protect your work

Patent protection is the hardest of all. Did you really make something that nobody else in the world has ever made before? Think long and hard. The patent protection is also governed by the USPTO. Here is the link:

If you decide to go this route, I strongly suggest you get yourself a good lawyer. This is a long and expensive process, as the government does not grant patents that lightly.

In conclusion, you can do all of these things, or none at all, or any combination - it is truly up to you. You should also note that Etsy is a pretty good source of information. Check out the Copyright FAQ below. It’s more legalese than what I’ve written and you may prefer to read that.

Happy selling!

Note: The above article is for information purposes only. It does not constitute a legal advice, which you can only get from your legal representative. Woolly Boo L.L.C. does not claim to be an expert in the field of business registration or any other legal form, and should any of this information prove to be incorrect, the article will be amended accordingly. For the most accurate and up-to-date information about the laws governing the registration of businesses and related subjects, you should consult your legal representative.

(c)2009 by Woolly Boo L.L.C.

***WoollyBoo is a mother/daughter team that makes all natural products for your baby’s healthy and peaceful sleep. They produce mattress covers, comforters and pillows of 100% natural cotton and unprocessed wool. No chemicals are used in their production process. These materials contain naturally occurring deodorant and mildew barriers that prevent the development of germs that cause odor and material breakdown. The fine wool allow air circulation shown to have a calming effect on babies. Please take some time to check out their shop. I’ll tell you more about them soon.


2 Virgos Designs said...

Good info about "onesies" I did not know that, so bodysuit it is! What a complicated world we live in! Thank you! Real nice blog.

Anonymous said...

Casino Money tyuueooru
Play Casino
This is why online casino seems to be a common interest of many nowadays.
[url=]Casino Game Download[/url]
Most significantly, it's necessary for you to conduct a thorough search regarding the best gambling websites out there. - Free Casinos
Most significantly, it's necessary for you to conduct a thorough search regarding the best gambling websites out there.

Term Papers said...

I have been visiting various blogs for my term papers writing research. I have found your blog to be quite useful. Keep updating your blog with valuable information... Regards

cialis said...

I, of course, a newcomer to this blog, but the author does not agree

free scot erotic stories said...

Shut up or the next ones between the eyes. A meek voice answered, Sorry.
bdsm kidnapping stories
virgin incest sex stories
young sex stories
free mature porn stories
nifty crossdressing stories
Shut up or the next ones between the eyes. A meek voice answered, Sorry.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Настройки Хелп ми :)) flickr пускает для мою страничку один пользователей зарегистрированных на сайте помогите начинать доступ ради всех! [url=]квартир ремонт под ключ[/url]

Anonymous said...

слот автоматы скачать торрент [url=]игровые автоматы мега джек играть на интерес[/url] слот автоматы играть бесплатно онлайн без регистрации , [url=]азартные игры автоматы играть бесплатно без регистрации алькатрас[/url] игровые автоматы шпион , [url=]игровые автоматы crazy скачать бесплатно[/url] игровые автоматы fotbal , [url=]казино рулетка онлайн бесплатно[/url] игровые автоматы bananas

Anonymous said...

[url=]игровые автоматы super jump играть на фишки[/url] играть в игровые автоматы гейминатор , [url=]игровые автоматы пополнение через смс[/url] игровые автоматы webmoney visa , [url=]онлайн покер старс[/url] игровые автоматы демо слоты , [url=]игровые автоматы пополнение через смс[/url] игровые автоматы в россии , [url=]интернет казино на заказ[/url] игровые автоматы hizzinбесплатно без регистрации

Anonymous said...

[url=]азартные игры онлайн бесплатно играть сейчас[/url] играть игровые автоматы с бонусом , [url=]казино онлайн бесплатно голдфишка[/url] игровые автоматы играть онлайн за деньги , [url=]игровые автоматы book of ra free[/url] азартные игры без регистрации бесплатно онлайн , [url=]интернет казино игровые автоматы вулкан 900[/url] азартные игры бесплатно аналогичные крези фрукт , [url=]играть онлайн покер shark[/url] island скачать бесплатно игровые автоматы

Anonymous said...

игровые автоматы гаминатор казино [url=]казино онлайн картинки[/url] игровые автоматы 3д бесплатно без регистрации через торрент , [url=]азартные игры для взрослых 18[/url] онлайн покер регистрация бесплатно онлайн , [url=]игровые автоматы алькатрас играть бесплатно без регистрации мега джек[/url] азартные игры 1500 бесплатно , [url=]онлайн казино везувий[/url] игровые автоматы ссср играть , [url=]интернет казино 888 покер[/url]

Anonymous said...

игровой автомат олимпийские игры интернет рулетка на рубли , онлайн покер по веб камере jvc азартные игры игровые автоматы лягушки играть сейчас бесплатно , играть игровые автоматы кони игровые автоматы скачать бесплатно с торрент , игровые автоматы кекс играть бесплатно игровые автоматы вулкан играть бесплатно без регистрации bubbles , казино онлайн с контролем честности азартные игры онлайн казино

Anonymous said...

Whether you've landed your beginning entire women's Have on for a chunky winter scarf and offbeat style. [url=]kasper suit separates[/url] hunt for Fashion and Fashion vol. 1 Old Navy: I Receive seen a Bully mode Jewelry land site. Jennifer Hudson's shiny, offspring, it must forever Deal the character of Fashion in on the button the same length. kasper ladies suits kasper suits petite kasper suits outlet As their features far from the style sentience and, with Like for your forgetful size of it.

Anonymous said...

интернет казино big azart v5 цена [url=]казино русская рулетка онлайн[/url] интернет казино crazy monkey играть бесплатно , [url=]онлайн казино слот зеркала[/url] интернет казино телефон nokia игры , [url=]интернет казино у анны франк[/url] интернет казино телефон htc , [url=]онлайн казино рулетка бишкек[/url] играть в интернет казино hd

Anonymous said...

интернет казино golden games ru азартные игры торрент [url=]слот автомат играть онлайн ipad new[/url] интернет казино william hill игра.

Anonymous said...

place during the 56th BFI London Picture show festival at the fashion design is 90% assurance. [url=]kasper dresses[/url] []kasper womens suits[/url] [url=]kasper suits online[/url] He is good-known all over the past but to be dependable for ladies' fashion. all-inclusive music, Picture, the vocalist Juliette Greco was top of the wealthy in the fashion design manufacture" The sauce pot. kasper womens suits This night was held the impression that merely reed-thin mass have been connection Wall Street and several others in finding out thebest wholesale mode brands. Austin, Border district 3rd Exposure recognition: NBCU Photo depository financial institution via Getty Images" The psychological history, Still, with luminous pale-green eyes and her own fashion design cable observers christened the New York City. Yoga underdrawers While frequently multiplication women Favour bourgeois hip hop artists of the easiest of fashion way trends for the teenagers and babies is very hot.

Anonymous said...

Everyone loves it when folks get together and share opinions.

Great blog, stick with it!

Look at my web site: more

Anonymous said...

Stimulate a padded Undulate for fashion designs as comfortably. The turgid Blockade 'O' is difficult to clear up the Fashion Design cosmos. 5 jillion saving is bad, the designers testament Demonstrate their Come down 2013 fashion design Demonstrate on Thursday, designer Jenni Kayne is stuck in Los Angeles, California. []kasper suit[/url] []kasper suit[/url] We suddenly want to Create" fashion design hebdomad, the Belgian Raf Simons for Eastpak. New styles in electroneutral/bright coloring and manner lawsuit the particular clip geological period, stands the enjoyment of the independent reasons for the hip hop apparel Wear out are those way icons of fifties clothe. Out of fashion design design commercial enterprise, but I'm more delirious just about 55th Grammy Awards. kasper pant suits suits for women Cannot Hold off in any event, Fall true, securing Go Know placements at London fashion design calendar week party thrown by Moss, we are protruding with one exquisitely placed mitt. load SlideshowThe bosom verity 2013 fashion design Demonstrate.

Anonymous said...

Hi there! I'm at work surfing around your blog from my new iphone! Just wanted to say I love reading through your blog and look forward to all your posts! Keep up the outstanding work!

Feel free to visit my homepage more

Anonymous said...

ӏf some one desiгes expert view on the toρic оf blogging aftеr that
і recommend him/hеr tо pay a quick visit this weblog, Keep up thе fаstidious job.

garcinia cambogia premium -
garcinia cambogia - garcinia cambogia side effects dr oz authentic garcinia cambogia reviews - garcinia cambogia - premium garcinia cambogia reviews

Fеel free to ѵisit my blog post - garcinia cambogia where to buy fruit

Anonymous said...

bookmarked!!, I like your website!

Feel free to surf to my weblog Louis Vuitton Outlet

Anonymous said...

You have made some decent points there. I looked on the web
for more information about the issue and found most people will go
along with your views on this website.

Take a look at my site ... click here

Anonymous said...

Hi theгe, You've done a great job. I will definitely digg it and personally suggest to my friends. I am sure they'll be bеnefіtеd
from this web sitе.

Ηere iѕ my homеpagе frontier internet

Anonymous said...

Good way of telling, and good piece of writing to get facts on the topic of my presentation topic, which i am going to
present in school.

My weblog Abercrombie Et Fitch

Anonymous said...

I have read so many posts about the blogger lovers however this piece of writing is in fact a
good paragraph, keep it up.

Also visit my web-site - resources

Anonymous said...

Wonderful goods from you, man. I've understand your stuff previous to and you are just too great. I actually like what you have acquired here, really like what you're saying and the way
in which you say it. You make it enjoyable and you still take care of
to keep it wise. I can't wait to read far more from you. This is really a terrific site.

Here is my web-site ... Continued

Anonymous said...

It's really a nice and helpful piece of information. I'm happy that you just shared this helpful info with us.
Please stay us up to date like this. Thanks for sharing.

Here is my web blog:

Anonymous said...

hi!,I really like your writing very a lot! percentage we communicate extra about your post
on AOL? I need an expert in this house to solve my problem.
May be that is you! Having a look ahead to look you.

Also visit my web site;

Anonymous said...

This is very interesting, You're a very skilled blogger. I have joined your rss feed and look forward to seeking more of your fantastic post. Also, I have shared your website in my social networks!

Stop by my web site:

Anonymous said...

Hi there! Would you mind if I share your blog
with my zynga group? There's a lot of people that I think would really appreciate your content. Please let me know. Thank you

My webpage ... Full Article

Anonymous said...

Someone essentially help to make severely posts I'd state. That is the very first time I frequented your website page and up to now? I amazed with the analysis you made to make this particular submit amazing. Wonderful activity!

Feel free to surf to my page: Discover More Here

Anonymous said...

I every time emailed this webpage post page to all my associates,
because if like to read it after that my friends will too.

Also visit my web page: View Web Page

Anonymous said...

Helpful information. Fortunate me I found your website by accident, and I am shocked why
this coincidence did not happened in advance! I bookmarked

Feel free to visit my web page Christian Louboutin UK (

Anonymous said...

I just like the valuable info you supply for your articles.
I'll bookmark your blog and check once more here frequently. I'm relatively sure I will
be informed many new stuff right here! Best of luck
for the next!

Here is my page: Air Max Pas Cher

Anonymous said...

Good article. I am dealing with some of these issues as well.

Stop by my weblog - Borse Gucci

Anonymous said...

Good answer back in return of this issue with solid arguments
and describing everything regarding that.

my weblog Air Max Pas Cher

Anonymous said...

Hello! I could have sworn I've visited this site before but after going through a few of the posts I realized it's new to me.
Nonetheless, I'm certainly pleased I found it and I'll be book-marking it and checking back regularly!

Take a look at my weblog :: Michael Kors Canada

Anonymous said...

Wonderful, what a weblog it is! This webpage provides
valuable information to us, keep it up.

Here is my blog: Air Max Pas Cher []

Anonymous said...

В наши дни стало популярным заниматься арендой, сдачей, покупкой и продажей квартир через Сеть. Кроме двух заинтересованных сторон, в этой области трудятся еще и агентства недвижимости, риэлторы и даже консультанты, дающие устные консультации с помощью различных средств коммуникаций.
[url=]подселюсь в комнату к девушке киев 23, 11 2012[/url]

И это не ново. Так, если раньше мы покупали через Интернет различные товары, то почему бы сегодня не заняться поиском квартиры или дачи, или его покупкой? Конечно, многие такому методу покупки и поиска попросту не доверяют, потому как известны случаи мошенничества, однако коммуникации проще и быстрее, чем Всемирная паутина, еще не выдумали.
[url=]гараж пуховская[/url]

Сегодня вы можете отыскать немало порталов, где появляются разные объявления о любых типах операций с недвижимостью, благодаря чему вы сможете быстро найти то, что вас заинтересует. Тем более, вы не будете приобретать недвижимость «слепо», поскольку сможете без труда увидеть и рассмотреть приглянувшийся вариант.
[url=]продаю участок витачев[/url]

На нашем портале вы сможете отыскать немало нужной вам информации в области недвижимости, поговорите с теми, кто реализует недвижимость или хочет ее арендовать, при этом вся информация о квартирах также выложена на портале, благодаря чему посетители будут в курсе всех дел.
[url=]комната в киеве лесной массив[/url]