Trademark Scam Warning!

If you have any federally-registered trademarks, you may have seen this.  I’ve got a few trademarks, including the name of my practice.  I just got this very official looking notice today.

Looks official and important enough, just on the envelope, eh?

Inside I find this:

That REALLY looks official.  And, gosh… I don’t want my trademark to expire.  But, then I don’t recall that I have to pay again and again.   I smell a scam.  So, I started reading the fine print.

Hmmmmm…. and this buried on the back side:

Here’s the full view of the back side.  Think many people are going to read this?

It also says, “This offer is not being made by an agency of the government.” 

Doze meezerable cork-sucking bastiges!

Upon further investigation, I learned that these disclaimers are legally required.  But,obviously, they can be buried in an avalanche of text that many people probably won’t read.  And, that’s the scam.  I bet a lot of these get paid, no questions asked.  They may not even make it past the office manager’s desk or get paid by “accounting” in some companies.  The actual Trademark Office has a warning about these scams.  And, this particular company has been referenced at this scam complaint website.

Registered trademarks are public domain information.  So, anyone could download thousands or even millions of trademarks and send them solicitations like this.  What this company REALLY does (supposedly) is MONITOR your trademark for infringements.  Then they notify you.  Gee whiz… thanks!  But, they even have a disclaimer for THAT.  On the back side of the mailing, there is a clause that states they do not guarantee performance.

Look out for #1.

The bottom line:   Be careful.  There are lots of “official”-looking “bills” that come into businesses.  Many are probably paid automatically without close examination.  It wouldn’t take many suckers paying $375 each for this scam operation to make some serious dough.

Oh… one more thing, there is some small print on the back of the “bill” that says you agree to not sue them.  Peachy!  A good Dental Warrior is always on alert.  Trust your instincts.  If it smells funny, it probably is.

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2 Responses to Trademark Scam Warning!

  1. Mike,
    I’d like to know more about how your blog is helping to advertise your business. I’m graduating in May and I have been told, by consultants, that starting a BLOG will help to bring in patients. Have you experienced this or is it just us dental/gun nerds that follow you? BTW, if you are ever in Houston Texas let me know! I haven’t found many dentist types that enjoy shooting as much as I do! Feel free to drop me a line.
    Yours,
    Christopher S. Hoffpauir
    DDS4
    The Pampered Smile

    • The Dental Warrior says:

      Hi Christopher,

      Blogs are good for a number of things and reasons. But, to clear one thing up, this blog (The Dental Warrior) isn’t for patients or my practice. TheDentalWarrior.com is a blog just for dentists. I created it so I’d have a place / archive of my writing. I have been active in the online dental community going back to 1992. And, I’ve been on Dentaltown.com since its inception, about 10 – 12 years ago. I’ve written a LOT, but I referring back to all of it can be a task, as it’s spread all over the place. So, now I write here. Then I copy & paste the I articles choose onto Dentaltown. But, now I have my own archive.

      I do have a blog for patients, too. I’ll admit that it’s not nearly as active as this one, though. Blogs can serve a number of purposes for a practice:
      - keep your patients updated about the practice.
      - add fresh and relevant content to your website on a regular basis.
      - Google likes blogs… a LOT.
      - educate the public about the benefits of today’s dentistry.

      And, so on.

      Gosh, I know a ton of dentists who shoot. They seem to go hand-in-hand. I would have expected that to be the case even more in Texas. :) Texas is one of my favorite states. Love the Texas attitude. I was in Dallas recently. Haven’t been to Houston since the 1970s.

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