BILLIONAIRE mining magnate and political campaigner Clive Palmer is considering adding another job title to his CV, media mogul.
Mr Palmer lodged a trade mark for The Australian Times on 1 July in relation to print and online media services, leading to speculation he is getting set to launch his own media publication in Australia (Mr Palmer’s publication is in no way connected to this website and its newspaper Australian Times).
Any individual, company or incorporated association is entitled to apply for a trade mark to protect a letter, number, word, phrase, logo or combination of these.
Mr Palmer’s application indicates he has applied to trade mark the phrase The Australian Times and an accompanying logo.
In addition to media services, Mr Palmer is also seeking the trade mark to apply in the categories of advertising, financial, monetary and real estate information services, publishing and broadcasting.
If Mr Palmer’s application for a trade mark is successful, he will have the legal right to use, licence or sell it for the goods and services for which it is registered.
Mr Palmer will also be entitled to prevent others from using it throughout Australia.
There is currently a website in Australia with the domain name australiantimes.com.au (also separate to this publication), and the masthead The Australian Times.
It does not appear this publication has made an application to trademark the title, and should Mr Palmer be successful it would be open to him to prevent the website from using the name.
The logo applied for by Mr Palmer in the trade mark application is written in similar font and style to the masthead currently used by australiantimes.com.au.
According to IP Australia, if an unregistered trade mark has been used for a sufficient period and has built up a reputation, this might prevent a separate application for use of that trade mark from being successful.
It is unclear whether IP Australia will consider the use of the phrase and logo by Australiantimes.com.au to be grounds to refuse Mr Palmer’s application.