The Second Civil Court of Santiago has accepted the lawsuit filed by university professor Eduardo Cañas against Channel 13 and the automotive company Williamson Balfour Motors (representatives of BMW in Chile) for the unauthorized and non-consensual use of the trademark ‘Ruta Eléctrica,’ owned by Cañas.
The precautionary measure imposed by the court on Channel 13 arose from the program ‘Ruta Eléctrica por Chile,’ a television show broadcast on Saturdays at 7:00 PM on Channel 13 Cable. Benjamin Uriarte, lawyer and partner in the Litigation and Arbitration area of Apparcel Uriarte, comments, ‘The trademark was used without the plaintiff’s consent and is entirely contained in the program’s name.’
Eduardo Cañas, a university professor and mechanical engineer, registered the trademark earlier this year, giving him rights to it. Indeed, the trademark registered by Cañas is ‘Ruta Eléctrica,’ and ‘it is not just a Channel 13 program, it is an infomercial type, as it makes many quite explicit references to BMW, so they have also been sued and will be notified,’ said the defender.
The precautionary measure against the defendants implies the immediate cessation of acts constituting the infringement. In other words, once Channel 13 SpA is notified, something that has not happened as of the closing of this edition, it must indefinitely stop broadcasting the program and remove all advertising from its social networks. Similarly, Williamson Balfour Motors (BMW Chile) must do the same until the conflict is resolved. The legal action also targets the producer of the program.
The program ‘Ruta Eléctrica por Chile’ has 18 episodes in its first season, with 12 already aired, repeated four more times during the week, and also retransmitted on Channel 13’s open signal.
‘The unauthorized use of the trademark, precisely corresponding to the name of the project that my client is developing in relation to electromobility, is the main problem of the matter. All efforts that Mr. Cañas is making will be in vain, losing his trademark’s distinctiveness in the market, confusing the average consumer, who will associate his brand with the Channel 13 program,’ explains the lawyer from Apparcel Uriarte.
The lawsuit for unauthorized use of the trademark requests a fine, for the benefit of the state, of 1000 UTM (Tax Measurement Units) for each of the defendants, and likewise, it demands compensation for the damages caused to Eduardo Cañas.”
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