BBM Canada v. Research In Motion Ltd., (2012) 408 F.T.R. 300 (FC)

Judge:Near, J.
Court:Federal Court
Case Date:January 11, 2012
Jurisdiction:Canada (Federal)
Citations:(2012), 408 F.T.R. 300 (FC);2012 FC 666
 
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BBM Can. v. Research In Motion Ltd. (2012), 408 F.T.R. 300 (FC)

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[French language version follows English language version]

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Temp. Cite: [2012] F.T.R. TBEd. JL.001

BBM Canada (applicant) v. Research in Motion Limited (respondent)

(T-1304-10; 2012 FC 666; 2012 CF 666)

Indexed As: BBM Canada v. Research In Motion Ltd.

Federal Court

Near, J.

May 30, 2012.

Summary:

The applicant, BBM Canada, challenged the use of the trademark "BBM" by Research in Motion Limited (RIM) in the promotion of its BlackBerry Messenger service. It was alleged that RIM's activities lead to confusion and consequently infringement, passing off and depreciation of goodwill in the registered trademarks of BBM Canada contrary to the Trade-marks Act.

The Federal Court dismissed BBM Canada's application.

Trademarks, Names and Designs - Topic 1804

Trademarks - Infringement - Acts not constituting an infringement (incl. defences) - BBM Canada was a not-for-profit corporation which supplied impartial television and radio ratings data and analysis to Canadian broadcasters, advertisers, etc. - BBM Canada challenged Research in Motion's (RIM's) use of the trademark "BBM" in the promotion of its BlackBerry Messenger service, alleging confusion and consequently infringement, passing off and depreciation of goodwill - The Federal Court dismissed BBM Canada's application - BBM Canada failed to prove its allegations and was attempting to assert a trademark monopoly over the acronym"BBM" well beyond the narrow ambit of its broadcast measurement services - The companies were not competitors and their services did not overlap - There was no confusion and deemed infringement, passing off or depreciation in the goodwill.

Trademarks, Names and Designs - Topic 1806

Trademarks - Infringement - Test - Confusion with other marks (incl. reverse confusion) - [See Trademarks, Names and Designs - Topic 1804 ].

Trademarks, Names and Designs - Topic 1808

Trademarks - Infringement - Use - Depreciation of goodwill - [See Trademarks, Names and Designs - Topic 1804 ].

Trademarks, Names and Designs - Topic 1811

Trademarks - Infringements - Use - Advertising - [See Trademarks, Names and Designs - Topic 1804 ].

Trademarks, Names and Designs - Topic 3068

Trademarks - Unfair competition - Passing off - [See Trademarks, Names and Designs - Topic 1804 ].

Cases Noticed:

Masterpiece Inc. v. Alavida Lifestyles Inc., [2011] 2 S.C.R. 387; 416 N.R. 307; 2011 SCC 27, refd to. [para. 23].

Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin v. Boutiques Cliquot ltée et al., [2006] 1 S.C.R. 824; 349 N.R. 111; 2006 SCC 23, refd to. [para. 28].

Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd. v. Areva NP Canada Ltd. et al., [2009] F.T.R. Uned. 598; 2009 FC 980, refd to. [para. 29].

Remo Imports Ltd. v. Jaguar Cars Ltd. et al. (2007), 367 N.R. 177; 2007 FCA 258, refd to. [para. 30].

Baylor University v. Hudson's Bay Co. (2000), 257 N.R. 231; 8 C.P.R.(4th) 64 (F.C.A.) refd to. [para. 34].

Cheung Kong (Holdings) Ltd. v. Living Realty Inc., [2000] 2 F.C. 501; 179 F.T.R. 161 (T.D.), refd to. [para. 34].

McDonald's Corp. et al. v. Coffee Hut Stores Ltd. (1994), 76 F.T.R. 281; 55 C.P.R.(3d) 463 (T.D.), affd. (1996), 199 N.R. 106; 68 C.P.R.(3d) 168 (F.C.A.), refd to. [para. 34].

GSW Ltd. v. Great West Steel Industries (1975), 22 C.P.R.(2d) 154 (F.C.T.D.), refd to. [para. 40].

Mattel Inc. v. 3894207 Canada Inc. et al., [2006] 1 S.C.R. 772; 348 N.R. 340; 2006 SCC 22, refd to. [para. 50].

Kirkbi AG et al. v. Ritvik Holdings Inc. et al., [2005] 3 S.C.R. 302; 341 N.R. 234; 2005 SCC 65, refd to. [para. 58].

Drolet v. Gralsbotschaft et al. (2009), 341 F.T.R. 44; 2009 FC 17, refd to. [para. 60].

Counsel:

Peter E. J. Wells, for the applicant;

Trent Horne and Dominique T. Hussey, for the respondent.

Solicitors of Record:

McMillan LLP, Toronto, Ontario, for the applicant;

Bennett Jones LLP, Toronto, Ontario, for the respondent.

This application was heard in Toronto, Ontario, on January 11, 2012, before Near, J., of the Federal Court, who delivered the following decision in Ottawa, Ontario, on May 30, 2012.

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