Michelle and Barack Obama Go Low In Trademark Dispute

Michelle and Barack Obama Go Low In Trademark Dispute

Michelle and Barack Obama Go Low In Trademark Dispute

Barack and Michelle Obama are in a trademark dispute regarding their company name, Higher Ground Productions. It seems the US Patent and Trademark Office won’t let them have that name. So what do the Obamas do in response? Go low, very low.

In April the office rejected the Obama’s trademark application once again because their company name, Higher Ground Productions, was too similar to Higher Ground Enterprises. I say once again, because the office had already rejected the application last September.

This August, the Obamas and their attorney filed again with the US Patent and Trademark office. This time they are DEMANDING that the trademark for Higher Ground Enterprises be cancelled. Yes, you read that correctly.

Higher Ground Enterprises is owned and operated by Haniysa Massey, and the company assists authors in publishing e-books.

This was the original trademark application from the Obamas for Higher Ground Productions.

“”[T]he consumers of ‘media production services’ covered by the Application are likely to be highly sophisticated,” stated a letter on behalf of the Obamas’ production company to the Trademark Office. “Media production services are generally offered not to individual consumers but to commercial entities and professionals in their field. Indeed, Applicant has entered a deal with Netflix in connection with its media production services. Such customers, whether multi-billion-dollar media companies or smaller commercial entities in need of media production services, will exercise the height of care in selecting a media production company and are highly unlikely to be confused by a photographer or e-book publisher — particularly when the other party uses a distinguishable mark.””

I read that, and then read it again. The sheer unmitigated arrogance of that entire paragraph is something to behold! The Obamas are telling us that those who will view the Obama Netflix channel are highly sophisticated elites, while mere photographers or a small business e-book publisher will only get traffic from those unsophisticated rubes from the flyover states.

Keeping the little guy …little is their version of going high.

Understandably, Massey and her attorney are pissed off and fighting back.

“”The Obamas have known for almost a year that their Higher Ground trademark application was rejected by the USPTO because it infringed my client’s rights,” says Zerner. “Instead, of simply picking another name, the Obamas’ lawyers have now filed a meritless petition to cancel my client’s trademark so they can take it for themselves. This is really deplorable behavior. I hope that the Obamas realize that these actions are not consistent with the values they preach and that they instruct their attorneys to immediately dismiss the petition.””

I really got a kick out of Zerner’s deplorable comment. And, he’s not wrong either. The Obamas have known since last September that their trademark application was denied.

The attorneys asked Massey in July if they could just go ahead and use the similar names. She refused.

Again, Massey’s company, Higher Ground Enterprises has been in business since 2008. The Obamas were essentially asking her to step aside and let her business suffer. She wasn’t willing to do so. Thus, instead of rebooting the name into something else, the Obamas kept going and have even debuted an anti-Trump documentary on their channel under the contested moniker!

Tell me something. Exactly who is going low here? It sure isn’t Massey.

The Obamas have chosen and therefore that unsophisticated rube of a little guy must be made to step aside.

The Obamas. Such class acts they are. Bless their hearts.

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Feature Photo Credit: Michelle and Barack Obama courtesy Barack Obama Presidential Library, cropped and modified

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21 Comments
  • Marc Johnson says:

    I suggest “Steaming Pile of Crap Productions”.

  • SFC D says:

    You expected the Obamas to be classy and professional in their post-presidential business endeavors? May I remind you he’s from Chicago, and that’s just not the Chicago way. He’s learned well from the criminals who created him from whole cloth.

    • MBlanc46 says:

      He’s not from Chicago. He’s (allegedly) from Hawaii. He carpetbagged here for a few years while scheming to get himself a prestige address in DC. There’s very little that’s authenticity Chicago, either black or white. His wife is a Chicago native, but she got out and hasn’t looked back.

  • Scott says:

    Anyone who’s surprised by this sort of behavior from those two raise your hand… then report back to your padded room where you can’t hurt yourself or anyone else..

  • CaptDMO says:

    I guess “Present Productions”, or “Scandal Free “, or “Keep your Doctor”, or “First Time Proud”, or “Spread It Around”, or “Free Lunch”, were taken too!

  • GWB says:

    The Obamas are telling us that those who will view the Obama Netflix channel are highly sophisticated elites
    Uh, no. That is NOT what they are saying. They are saying that their production company is not for individual consumers. It is for companies looking for a specific, complicated service. And they’re saying it is unlikely someone like that will accidentally pick an e-publisher instead because of the similarity in names.

    Now, that is backwards. The concern of the Patent Board isn’t that their customers will be confused but that the e-publisher‘s customers will be confused. I’m not sure it would really be that big a deal, either way. BUT, the most important bit is that the e-publisher already occupies the space and they have the right to the name as the default position.

    the Obamas’ lawyers have now filed a meritless petition to cancel my client’s trademark so they can take it for themselves
    Now THAT is despicable. (I also like the use of the word “deplorable” there. 🙂 )

  • GWB says:

    One other thing: don’t be too sure it’s the 0bama’s themselves pushing that hard. Plenty of lawyers out there with that level of a**holery and arrogance, and the 0bama’s would definitely pick that sort of legal support.

    But, yes, the 0bama’s themselves are also at that level of a**holery and arrogance. So it’s a toss-up.

  • Jeff says:

    Why do t they just buy the name? It’s not like they don’t have a ton of money.

    • Wodun says:

      Ding, ding, ding.

      The Obama’s somehow have FU money after not doing much of anything, other than being President. This is one of the world’s greatest accomplishments but it didn’t pay hundreds of millions of dollars.

      For what they paid for one if their several mansions, they probably could have bought they name several times over. Maybe they tried and the lady was like, “I got ten million already, I’m ccol.” But it seems more likely Obama tried to get it for free and then resorted to bullying.

      Heck, the lawyers probably cost more than buying the name would.

  • lazlo toth says:

    This should be easy. The Obamas have a LOT of money to offer the other party simply to SELL the trademark to them so they can use it. Given that this is a fairly customary practice, it’s extreme bullying by the Obamas to try to cancel the mark rather than simply pay a bunch of money for it.

  • curmudgeoninchief says:

    Situations like this, petitionsfor cancellation through the TTAB, usually get solved with money. If it is important enough to spend a lot of money on trademark attorneys to fight over this, it is usually worth it to somebody to accept an accomodation of some sort for money. While the Obama’s may notbe might favorite people, they can probably get a reasonable accomodation with the owners of the other mark, as long as personalitiesdon’t get involved.

  • Earnest S. Walls says:

    You guys are so hilarious.

    Why don’t we call a spade a spade?

    This has NOTHING to do with Obama any more than Obama had ANYTHING to do with being President.

    Obama got paid billions by netflix for the same reason he got elected President–because he pretends to be a black.

    That’s it.

    That’s all.

    That’s the SUM TOTAL of what “he” brings to the table.

    Netflix his paying him and the Gorilla billions so that if anyone looks at them cross-eyed, they can say “racism.”

    Well you know what, Obama? You are a retarded Gorilla, and so is your wife.

    Suck on that.

  • McGehee says:

    Put Them Through a Plate Glass Window Productions might be available.

  • Bill says:

    They could name it “Stuttering Clusterfuck of a Miserable Failure Productions”.

  • Linda Fox says:

    No, they are in quite perilous territory here – they have, despite clear warning of trademark infringement, continued to used the name, even marking their product on Netflix with it.

    They have not gotten agreement from the publisher to use the name, so clearly she has them on unauthorized use – which she could sue for damages on completely justified grounds.

    They have used the name while the fight went on, a practice that is neither correct, nor designed to get a judge to rule in their favor.

    The judges that will rule are not Chicago-appointed judges, eager to gain favor with the wealthy and politically powerful – the Obamas’ position means little to them.

    The trespassed-upon publisher should put in for monetary damages AND all legal fees.

    • SDN says:

      Linda, there are dozens of Obama-appointed judges who will be happy to rule in their favor — and any suggestion of recusal will be raaaaacist.

      And given the current mindset of the Democrats, I hope this lady has plenty of competent well-armed security. As we saw in such cases as the IRS treatment of the Tea Party groups, Obama brought “will no one rid me of this troublesome priest?” to an art form.

    • Lizzy says:

      Perhaps they are so insistent is because this media venture (Netflix, Spotify content so far) is meant to complement Higher Ground Labs, started in 2017 by a group of former Obama staffers to fund tech start-ups to help progressives win office: https://highergroundlabs.com/

      Attempting to steal another’s trademark is deplorable indeed.

  • […] Victory Girls:           The Obamas Go Low […]

  • guinspen says:

    Choom Gang Productions

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