Darryl Wilson calls guitar trademark suit ‘an interesting case’

By Sean Kinane
88.5 WMNF
Dec. 26, 2019


Associate Dean Darryl Wilson
Associate Dean Darryl Wilson

One of the most famous guitar manufacturers in the world is suing a much smaller company that makes guitars in Tampa; Gibson is suing Tampa’s Armadillo Enterprises, which makes guitars under the Dean and Luna brands.

Gibson says three Dean or Luna guitars violate its trademarks.

Law professor Darryl Wilson, an associate dean at Stetson University College of Law, calls it “an interesting case from the standpoint of when you think of a trademark.”

“Much like any dispute in trademark law, though, what the judge will be looking at is whether or not the protected subject matter is distinctive. You need something to be distinctive in order to be able to get a trademark registration for it in the first place. And then, also, on the other end: has it been adequately policed once the trademark was procured? Or, has it been allowed to be used by the general public in a manner that gives rise to a claim that it’s generic?”

The complete article was originally published on the 88.5 WMNF website on Dec. 26, 2019, with the headline, “Gibson is suing Tampa’s Armadillo Enterprises over guitar trademarks.”