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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I had a "NATO" style strap listed on eBay - it was something that someone had put on a watch I'd bought, and was new, so I saw no reason not to sell it. Today, I got an email from eBay telling me that they had taken it down as it violated someone's copyright. Yes, indeed an outfit called "International Watchman" claim that they have registered the words "NATO" and "NATO G10." And indeed, "NATO" has been trademarked many times over for many companies; "NATO-G10" is registered to an individual related to the aforementioned company.

"Your listing was reviewed after receiving a report from the rights owner that your listing used their trademark without their permission. We urge you to contact the rights owner directly for more information on why they requested the review of your listing and whether you can relist the item."

I wonder what NATO make of this. We're all going to have to change our watch strap lingo!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I see. Of little use in argument with eBay, who wouldn't/couldn't get such a fine distinction.

It wouldn't irritate me quite so much if he was protecting a unique trademark, but of course he's merely trading on NATO's well-established name and their relationship to a style of watch strap - it's not like he's protecting something he created, which I'd happily respect.


There's been a big thread on the affordables forum about this, and I think there's another in the straps and bracelets forum. I know, it's crazy. I think it should only be enforced for U.S. sellers though, because he hasn't applied for European trademark on it.

https://www.watchuseek.com/f71/inte...emark-case-term-nato-under-threat-938934.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·

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Just scanned the thread. Mind blowing. I really don't know how that guy got this registered. Nonsense.

Hey, since when does the government know what the heck they're doing :)
 

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There was a similar thread on MWR, you can imagine the reactions on a military watch forum...

Habitant, perhaps you could try relisting it using the same letters in an anagram style, make it into a joke thing maybe by telling buyers why.
 
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Registering trademarks on governmental entities wasn't that common until recently.

Will NATO contest it?

I think they've got more pressing issues.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Pithy, you are known for your wisdom and, well, your pithyness. But I despair on this. Have you never spoken to a lawyer? More pressing issues? Je ne pense pas.

Registering trademarks on governmental entities wasn't that common until recently.

Will NATO contest it?

I think they've got more pressing issues.
 

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. . . . Je ne pense pas.
Curiously, in another life I used to manage corporate litigation.

I thought eastern aggression and western pullout were more important but you are right - it is all about the stripes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Someone else in NATO strap land has trademarked this: "NATO Vintage Bond®"

It always reminds me of those Nigerian mail fraud guys and what they could actually achieve if they just got stuck into some real work - what wonders they could accomplish with their dedication and verve. What speeling! What spieling! Or in the words of my esteemed colleague, Dr R Soul of the Government Commission for Repatriation of Monies: "They are eventing a hole nu language."

Imagine, too, what these teeny minds could do if they actually did something with themselves aside from passing off someone else's work as something they had something to do with.
 

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I'm still wading me through the referenced thread, but I'm still amazed at it.

Apple recently announced canvas straps for their watch line, and I wondered at the time why they didn't call them NATO straps. I REALLY wish they had, as I'd love to see this guy try to go after the most valuable publicly traded corporation in the world.
 
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I'm still wading me through the referenced thread, but I'm still amazed at it.

Apple recently announced canvas straps for their watch line, and I wondered at the time why they didn't call them NATO straps. I REALLY wish they had, as I'd love to see this guy try to go after the most valuable publicly traded corporation in the world.
Well, Omega is selling NATO straps, and there seems to be not a squeek from this shyster.

https://www.omegawatches.com/accessories/nato-straps/catalog/
 

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Well, Omega is selling NATO straps, and there seems to be not a squeek from this shyster.

https://www.omegawatches.com/accessories/nato-straps/catalog/
So I guess he's just going after people who he knows can't defend themselves...classy. I'm guessing, though, that if one of us listed one of those Omegas on Ebay with an Omega-branded NATO strap he'd probably go after us. The bad thing is that these sort of take downs count against your seller record/account status on Ebay.
 
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Well, Omega is selling NATO straps, and there seems to be not a squeek from this shyster.

https://www.omegawatches.com/accessories/nato-straps/catalog/
Tackling Ebay sellers is low fruit for this opportunist. I'd like to see how he goes with the Chinese manufactures. I'm sure the watch world will find another name, G10 seems logical but it looks like he's tied up that loop hole too.



http://www.h-spot.net/watches/mod/watchstraps_2001.pdf

The image above is from a Ministry of Defence standard 66-47 wrist strap date 2001. Some have suggested MoD straps of D-stan straps. I'm sure a new name will appear to outwit this con artist. A rose by any other name....



Regards,
 

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Moron
 

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I note that on the Cousins website they refer to them as N.A.T.O straps. I guess this is the correct shortening or acronym for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization?
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Actually, NATO is the correct way to render the North American Treaty Organisation - there are multiple registrations for NATO on the US Trademark roster, his must specifically note a connection to his business, I guess. Similarly, "G-10" is written in that specific format - and so it goes. The long and short of it is that his business is founded on implying that he had something to do with innovating the NATO strap, which of course it had nothing to do with it. It's very sad, the whole silly thing.

He's probably lost more sales by alienating his core market than he's made. So busy being "smart" that he can't see how stupid he actually is.

I note that on the Cousins website they refer to them as N.A.T.O straps. I guess this is the correct shortening or acronym for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization?
 

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I noticed in the other thread that he'd gone after NATO marked bottles of Woodford Reserve bourbon. I don't know if that's gone anywhere, but Brown Foreman has VERY deep pockets as well. He may have poked a sleeping bear with that one.
 
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