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Today in bad ideas: Companies are trying to trademark ‘social distancing’

Who wouldn’t want to trademark the most economically destructive order in a generation?

Today in bad ideas: Companies are trying to trademark ‘social distancing’
[Photo: Smilja Jovanovic/iStock; Jad Limcaco/Unsplash

Prepare yourself. Social distancing beer is coming soon, along with social distancing CBD oil, and Social Distancing: The Game.

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Since March 15, a dozen trademark applications have been filed for “social distancing,” TMZ reports. Who wouldn’t want to purchase products branded with the concept of, uh, devastating communal spacing?

Look for social distancing shirts, hats, signs, and stickers in online stores near you, the report suggests.

Trademark applications usually cost around $1,300 for each category of goods or services that a brand wants to protect—plus lawyers’ fees, which can cost much more. Thus, companies generally only file trademark applications with product or marketing strategies in place. But don’t worry—there may be a reprieve: Lawyers question whether these applications will succeed, as trademarks for phrases that are “widely used messages” are typically rejected.

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