RIM responds to BBM trademark infringement allegations, says they “do not overlap with BBM Canada’s services… therefore eligible to co-exist”

Yesterday it was discovered that BBM Canada was going after Research In Motion for trademark infringement over their use of the BBM acronym in their BlackBerry Messenger service. Well, today RIM sent us an official statement and here’s their response:

RIM Media Statement – BBM Trademark Litigation: December 23, 2011

“Since its launch in July 2005, BlackBerry Messenger has become a tremendously popular social networking service. In 2010, RIM started to formally adopt the BBM acronym, which had, at that point, already been organically coined and widely used by BlackBerry Messenger customers as a natural abbreviation of the BlackBerry Messenger name. The services associated with RIM’s BBM offering clearly do not overlap with BBM Canada’s services and the two marks are therefore eligible to co-exist under Canadian trademark law. The two companies are in different industries and have never been competitors in any area.

We believe that BBM Canada is attempting to obtain trademark protection for the BBM acronym that is well beyond the narrow range of the services it provides and well beyond the scope of rights afforded by Canadian trademark law. RIM has therefore asked the Court to dismiss the application and award costs to RIM. Further, for clarity, RIM’s application to register BBM as a trademark with the Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) is pending and we are confident that a registration will eventually issue. The inference by BBM Canada that CIPO has refused RIM’s BBM trademark application is quite frankly very misleading.”

Hopefully the above statement will stop all confusion that BBM Canada, their employees and customers are experiencing. However, the court hearing with both companies is still scheduled for January 11th, 2012.