Tomorrow’s Brands Might Be Impossible to Trademark
By: Fast Company
Anyone who owns an Amazon Echo is familiar with the blue ring. It’s the glowing, abstract face of the Alexa assistant that signifies when it is listening, thinking, and speaking. It’s about as ephemeral as user interface can get.
Perhaps it doesn’t seem odd that Amazon attempted to register the ring as a trademark in 2016. After all, trademarks give companies more protections over their brands. Amazon wants to protect Alexa like Nike wants to protect the swoosh. But in fact, it’s a relatively rare, aggressive move on Amazon’s part: registering a trademark not for a corporate logo, but a piece of a user interface.