ShortsTV sues Google for trademark violation

ShortsTV, a short film entertainment business, has filed legal action against Google in the UK Intellectual Property Enterprise Court for trademark infringement in respect to Google's adopted brand name and emblem for its YouTube Shorts service.

ShortsTV claims to have been a vital element of the film industry and a prominent backer of developing and grassroots film talent during the last 20 years. Shorts International, the ShortsTV holding company, possesses previously registered trademarks for ShortsTV and Shorts in the United Kingdom, the European Union, India, and the United States, which have been used regularly as a brand for more than two decades. ShortsTV has played an important role in establishing and cementing the word "Shorts" to refer to high-quality short films linked with the firm and its networks.

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Google, under its YouTube brand, began testing and then internationally rolling out its TikTok competitor service, YouTube Shorts, in late 2020, with a design that is strikingly similar to the Shorts and ShortsTV brand logos, both of which offer short-form video services.

When challenged for using a similar logo, Google replied by suing to contest the validity of ShortsTV's existing registered trademarks in different jurisdictions, requiring ShortsTV to aggressively defend its brand and trademarks that have existed in various incarnations since 2008.

"This is heartbreaking," says Carter Pilcher, Founder and CEO of ShortsTV. "A massive company decides to adopt branding that we believe is nearly identical to our own, and that we have spent decades of concerted effort building into a recognised and respected name in our industry, and when challenged, they apply to cancel our trademarks around the world rather than seek an amicable resolution." Unfortunately, that is the situation ShortsTV is in, and we have been left with little alternative but to pursue this action as a last resort. We are hopeful that the Court will conclude that Google has violated our trademarks."


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