When Is A Onesie Not A Onesie?
Answer – when it’s made by anyone other Gerber Childrenswear apparently. Shocked? Yeah, me too. 8-O Have you ever even heard of them? Nope? Don’t worry. You’re not alone.
So who are they and what the hell do they have to do with onesies?
Well, apparently they’re a ‘leading marketer‘ of infant clothing. Not too sure how true the ‘leading marketer’ bit is. I’d never heard of them and I’ve had 3 kids and got 2 grandkids, none of whom have ever owned a piece of clothing from Gerber. Still, they’re not a UK company and I live in the UK so I guess that doesn’t count for much.
What does that have to do with onesies?
I’m glad you asked. Gerber Childrenswear own the trademark to the name ‘Onesies’ so God help anyone who wants to market their own version of one piece sleepsuits, pyjamas, jumpsuits, or whatever else and call it a onesie. Because if you do, the following is a snippet of what you can expect to recieve in your inbox.
Gerber Childrenswear LLC (‘Gerber’) is the owner of U.S. federal trademark registration numbers 1,292,981 and 2,549,557, respectively, for the ONESIES® mark and other trademark registrations pertaining to the mark, and Gerber’s exclusive rights in the ONESIES® mark are legally incontestable under §15 of the Lanham Act. As a result of Gerber’s extensive use and substantial money and effort invested in developing and promoting its ONESIES® mark for over twenty-four years, the public has come to associate Gerber with the ONESIES® mark, as well as the underlying goodwill and exceptional quality associated with this mark established by Gerber. Accordingly, Gerber takes any infringement of its ONESIES® mark seriously.
It has come to Gerber’s attention that you are utilizing the ONESIES® mark …without Gerber’s permission (‘Infringing Use’). You are not an authorized licensee of Gerber and have no authorization to use the ONESIES® mark, or any other designation confusingly similar to Gerber’s ONESIES® mark, and, therefore, your use of ONESIES® is a serious infringement of Gerber’s valuable proprietary rights. Furthermore, your use of the ONESIES® mark, or any other designation confusingly similar to Gerber’s ONESIES® mark, is misleading and confusing to the public as to the source, affiliation, and sponsorship of the Infringing Use, as the public is likely to assume there is an affiliation with the well-established ONESIES® mark. Such confusion results in substantial damage to Gerber’s proprietary rights, including dilution of the ONESIES® mark and the goodwill associated therewith.
Accordingly, on behalf of Gerber, we demand that you immediately cease and desist from any further use, display, or publication of the ONESIES® mark in any form. Gerber will allow you 7 days to disable the infringing domain.
In addition, you must cease and desist from any use of “onesie” or “onesies” in your meta tags. Thus, a consumer entering the term “onesie” into a search field on your site should not return hits for non-Gerber bodysuits, one-pieces, or creepers. Use of the ONESIES® trademark in meta tags or search terms will be considered trademark infringement.
Gerber expects that you will comply with the aforementioned demands within seven (7) days from the date of this notice, and provide Gerber with assurances of compliance on or before this date via email … Should you fail to comply with these demands, please be assured that Gerber will vigorously protect its proprietary rights by seeking legal enforcement of its trademark rights and pursuing any and all legal remedies for damages arising from trademark infringement, trademark dilution, and unfair competition.
Phew! That’s a lot of twaddle to just say, ‘hey, quit using our brand name on your website’. But what really gets me is the bit that says:
As a result of Gerber’s extensive use and substantial money and effort invested in developing and promoting its ONESIES® mark for over twenty-four years, the public has come to associate Gerber with the ONESIES® mark, as well as the underlying goodwill and exceptional quality associated with this mark established by Gerber.
Newsflash Mr Gerber – no. They haven’t. If they had I’m pretty damn sure a search on Google for the term ‘onesies’ would at least show you somewhere on the first page of results when in fact, you don’t even appear on the first three. (for the record, I couldn’t be bothered to seach any further).
Now it seems to me if you’ve been investing that much money for that long you need to be asking some serious questions of your marketing people as to where they’ve been diverting those funds to for the last 24 years. Cos it sure as hell hasn’t gone on building up an association between Gerber and onesies!
For the record, I associate the term, ‘onesies’ with the latest craze in adult sleepwear. And yes I call it a craze folks. My son and his mates decided to go to the flicks wearing their onesies. If that’s not crazy I don’t know what is.
You can head over to Amazon and buy any number of onesies from there. None of which are childrenswear by Gerber. Check it out for yourself.
But I guess they’re not really onesies. Cos if they were, I’m sure Gerber would have ordered Amazon to remove them by now. Or at least to stop calling them onesies in case folks got confused and thought they were kiddies sleepsuits.