The USPTO (United States Patent & Trademark Office) has refused WWE's application for the EVOLVE name.
WWE purchased the EVOLVE promotion from WWN Live back in early July, but have had issues with filing to trademark the "EVOLVE name, according to Heel By Nature.
The trademark for the "EVOLVE" name was originally filed in November 2019 by WWN Live owner Sal Hamaoui. The USPTO initially refused the trademark application due to improper documentation attached to the filing.
"Registration is refused because the specimen does not show the applied-for mark in use in commerce in connection with any of the goods and/or services specified in the application," said the notice issued by the USPTO.
Hamaoui did not respond to the notice, and the "EVOLVE" trademark was subject to abandonment. WWE then filed a notice to revive their application on Tuesday, August 4, and to change ownership, transferring the application to WWE.
The USPTO issued a notice on Tuesday, August 25 to inform WWE that the trademark filing cannot move forward due to confusion with the "EF EVOLVED FIGHTS MIXED WRESTLING" trademark.
Records show that the "EF EVOLVED FIGHTS MIXED WRESTLING" trademark was first filed for on Friday, September 27, 2019. It has been registered since Tuesday, May 5 of this year. The owner of that name is listed as Greatest of All Time Entertainment, LLC. It looks like "EVOLVED FIGHTS" is some sort of adult entertainment company.
That notice from August 25 reads like this:
"Applicant seeks to register the mark EVOLVE with a design for entertainment services, namely, wrestling exhibits and performances by a professional wrestler and entertainer. The registered mark is EF EVOLVED FIGHTS MIXED WRESTLING with a design and disclaimer of FIGHTS and MIXED WRESTLING for providing a website featuring entertainment information in the field of adult entertainment.
The registered mark is EF EVOLVED FIGHTS MIXED WRESTLING with a design and disclaimer of FIGHTS and MIXED WRESTLING. Applicant's mark is EVOLVE with a design. Although marks are compared in their entireties, one feature of a mark may be more significant or dominant in creating a commercial impression. Greater weight is often given to this dominant feature when determining whether marks are confusingly similar. Because consumers use the literal portions of marks to call for the services, word elements dominate over designs. Thus, EVOLVE is the dominant portion of the applied-for mark. Similarly, because disclaimed terms are less distinctive, non-descriptive/disclaimed terms dominate the recollection of consumers. Since EF merely reinforces EVOLVED FIGHTS, EVOLVED is the dominant portion of the registered mark. The dominant portions of the marks are very similar: EVOLVE versus EVOLVED.
Applicant's services are entertainment services, namely, wrestling exhibits and performances by a professional wrestler and entertainer. The registered mark is for providing a website featuring entertainment information in the field of adult entertainment. The adult entertainment featured in the registered mark is MIXED WRESTLING, as evinced by the disclaimer of the wording. Applicant's wrestling exhibits and performances are provided not only by a professional wrestler, but by an "entertainer" who may potentially provide adult entertainment that is the subject of registrant's services. It is important to note that registrant's mixed wrestling is within the scope of applicant's wrestling exhibitions."
WWE has six months from the notice to respond to the USPTO.
As we've noted, WWE has been signing a handful of former EVOLVE wrestlers, and they continue to add EVOLVE content to the indie section of the WWE Network.
Stay tuned for updates.