Source Music has lost the application for exclusive trademark rights of GFRIEND.
Recently, its been revealed that The Korea intellectual property protection agency [KOIPA] has rejected Source Music’s application to trademark GFRIEND’s name.
The official documents cite two reasons. The first is that the trademark is identical to the English name for the 6-member South Korean girl group GFRIEND and they said, “it cannot be trademarked.”
The second reason is, “The trademark GFRIEND is already directly affiliated with the 6-member South Korean girl group GFRIEND, a group noticeably identified by general, consumers, thus, the use of this trademark by the applicant for product use can cause misconception, raising the potential for the deception of consumers.”
But why was Source Music application to trademark GFRIEND rejected?
Some analysts believe the reason behind it is because Source Music forgot to register the trademark when GFRIEND debuted in 2015. The KOIPA could have potentially rejected the application because the name is identifiable with the group GFRIEND, while if the agency had trademarked the name prior to their debut, many argue it could have been passed.
But what does this mean for GFRIEND?
As a result of the rejection, the GFRIEND members are free to use their group name in any form including releasing an album or appearing on broadcasts as a team.
Netizens are applauding the KOIPA’s decision. Many hope the group members will reunite one day and release music as a group.
What are your thoughts on this?