On May 3, 2018, Dr. Dre lost a long running battle at the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) over the mark “Dr. Drai”.

Dr. Draion M Burch, an ob/gyn based out of Pennsylvania applied for the mark DR. DRAI in connection with education and entertainment services relating to his practice and speaking opportunities. Burch regularly appears on TV and has authored books on sexual health with titles like "20 Things You May Not Know About the Penis." Dr. Dre (real name Andre Young) is a rap mogul and entrepreneur, credited with launching the careers of major acts like Eminem and Snoop Dogg, as well as the headphone company Beats by Dre.

The two “doctors” have been locked in a heated battle since 2015 over the use of the mark DR. DRAI. Young objected to the mark on the grounds that the similarity between Dr. Dre and Dr. Drai would cause confusion (both Dre and Drai are pronounced the same way) and that this similarity would falsely suggest a connection between the two brands. Burch argued that people would be unlikely to confuse him with Young "because Dr. Dre is not a medical doctor nor is he qualified to provide any type of medical services or sell products specifically in the medical or healthcare industry."

The USPTO dismissed the opposition, concluding that Burch’s entertainment and educational motivational speaking services, “which are officially limited in content to osteopathic medicine, obstetrics and gynaecology, are a subject matter which is obviously far removed from music.”

Summary By: Jennifer R Davidson

E-TIPS® ISSUE

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