Trademarks can protect such widely varied things as names (Pepsi), letters (CBS), numbers (Chanel No. 5), titles, short phrases or slogans, buildings (Chrysler Building), distinctive symbols (McDonald’s Golden Arches), container shapes, characters like Peter Rabbit, logos (the CBS eye), and even musical phrases (NBC’s three-note chime).
If you want to use something that is trademarked, the trademark owner’s permission must be obtained.
TIP: Copyright registration cannot be made for names, titles, and other short phrases. But they can be trademarked.
TIP: Owners of trademarks have a variety of responses to requests for use of the marks. Some grant permission without charging a fee, for the public relations value of the use. Others hardly ever allow their marks to be used for any reason. And some companies use their trademarks as a source of profit. Because trademarks are often owned by companies that do not have a specific department or person designated to handle requests to use their marks, getting permission can be tough going.