Please see all COVID-19 updates here as some shipments may be delayed due to CDC safety and staffing guidelines. If you have an order or shipping question please refer to our Customer Support page. For technical questions please check out our Forums. Thank you for your continued support.

Member #797129

Member Since: April 14, 2016

Country: United States

  • US trademarks lapse if they are not enforced. This means that if you don't enforce a trademark on Sparkfun's goods, then the entire trademark lapses. It makes sense that Fluke wouldn't want flukes pretending to be Fluke (counterfeit products) - they built a brand, and they want to protect it.

    Hank Green explains it here:


  • It's mostly so that Knockoffs wouldn't look like they were made by Fluke. They would probably less strict if they could, but trademark law is really strict and weird.

  • I clicked your link to try and see what you meant, but it gave me a 404. Seems like Fluke might have enforced their trademark...

  • The problem with trademarks is that if a company stops enforcing one, they lose it. That's why they aren't granting you a license, but giving you a 1-time donation of Fluke meters. Legally, they are still enforcing their trademark, but they are also doing the ethically right thing.

    If they tighten their definition to a specific shade of yellow, then someone could make a meter just a tad darker, and claim that the trademark isn't being enforced like that.

    Short story short, copyright law makes it really easy to give out licenses without losing all of your rights. Trademark law makes it hard to give out a license and keep your trademark.

    Hank Green (from the vlogbrothers/scishow/Crash Course) explains this well in relation to the React World scandal here: https://medium.com/@hankgreen/the-trouble-with-trademarks-dcd8af3bede3#.91rf5utzh