A broadband television service, 'YouView' chaired by Lord Sugar has lost a High Court Intellectual Property case, after the court ruled that its name was too similar to that of 'Your View', a business to business service operated by Gloucestershire communications company, Total.
YouView started its life under the name Project Canvas, an Internet Protocol Television service (IPTV) originally conceived by the BBC.
Subsequently all the major UK television channels jumped on board, including ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5. The company also has links with TalkTalk, BT and transmission firm Arquiva. The service launched to customers in September 2012.
The company first sought to register the YouView name in April 2010, but Total had already registered 'Your View' as a trademark in November 2009.
Total opposed YouView's application in the Trade Mark Registry earlier this year, and won on the basis that the name was too similar to that of Total's trademark for a range of goods and services.
The most recent case in the High Court was an appeal by YouView on the basis that the trademark they have registered is solely for the use of the name on set-top boxes, and the software behind the service - far removed from Total's business.
The High Court judge, Justice Floyd, dismissed the appeal.
Speaking afterwards the managing director of Total, Stuart Baikie, said that they would now consider taking out an injunction against YouView to prevent them breaching their trademark further, and would also consider applying for damages and costs:
"One way that this may impact on YouView may well be that they may have no other option than to rebrand" said Mr Baikie.
However YouView were defiant in defeat, saying they still have a number of legal avenues to follow and would not therefore be changing their name just yet:
"YouView has no intention of changing its name. This matter is complex and subject to a number of ongoing legal actions and will be settled in the courts" said a spokesperson for the company.
Willans defeats Bristows in YouView trademark case (The Lawyer)