SAY WHAT!? You can copyright a COLOUR? Yes. A colour can be copyrighted. Colours, symbols, and even SOUNDS can be copyrighted. But only a company can trademark the colour in its industry. Coke can’t sue target if they were using the same colour, so target is safe. They have to be in the same industry.
The colour can not be very similar to the one in the industry. For example, coke; You CAN have another red, but it can not be more than 40-60% similar in value. Using a pantone spot colour would be the best option.
In this blog, i will be looking at a few companies that HAVE trademarked a colour.
Cadbury successfully trademarked their well-known purple for the chocolate industry. Cadbury now has Exclusive rights to using the traditional purple for any items they use, and any other company that tries to replicate the colour in a way that is similar will be chatting to cadbury in court.
Target is also a victim of the colour trademarking scheme. The colour can not be used with any other company in the franchise or industry.
Tiffany & Co
This successful brand has successfully cracked themselves a place on the colour copyright chart. They have copyrighted their famous ‘Tiffany blue.’
Tzatzev, A. (2012). 10 colours That Might Get You Sued. Business Insider Australia. Retrieved 29 June 2016, from http://www.businessinsider.com.au/colors-that-are-trademarked-2012-9?r=US&IR=T#brown-1
Smith, S. & Smith, S. (2012). Can You Trademark A Colour? Cadbury Secures The Rights To The Colour Purple – Azrights. Azrights. Retrieved 29 June 2016, from http://www.azrights.com/media/news-and-media/blog/intellectual-property/2012/11/can-you-trademark-a-colour/
Color & Trademarks. (2016). Colormatters.com. Retrieved 29 June 2016, from http://www.colormatters.com/color-and-marketing/color-and-trademarks/62-color-a-marketing