YouView loses High Court appeal, may face name change

A new name for the service?

YouView - the budget TV rival to Sky and Virgin - may have to change its name, as it's just lost a High Court appeal concerning its trademark.

It was appealing against an earlier decision on trademark infringement made by the Intellectual Property Office (IPO) back in May.

The original decision said the YouView name was too similar to the Your View services offered by telecommunications company Total Ltd. The similarity "could cause confusion", the IPO said.

YouView argued the name wasn't too similar and so it should be allowed to use it as a trademark. But Mr Justice Floyd threw out its argument, upholding the IPO's decision. He said the hearing officer had "reached a conclusion which she was entitled to reach" and that "the relevant goods and services were highly similar."

YouView, our name

Total Ltd's lawyer pointed out that the Your View trademark has been registered since November 2009. "Our client has done the right thing in defending a brand that is pivotal to their business and is legally theirs," he said. "We welcome the judge's ruling."

So YouView can't use its name as a trademark from now on. But it doesn't look like it's going to start calling itself anything else.

"YouView has no intention of changing its name," a YouView representative said. "This matter is complex and subject to a number of on-going legal actions and will be settled in the courts."

Total Ltd's response? It's going to pursue it. Managing director Stuart Baikie said in a statement that the company had "every right and intention to take further action to protect our brand. We will soon be taking further infringement action in the High Court, likely to include seeking an injunction limiting their use of the brand, damages and costs, as we believe that they are still acting without regard to our registered mark and business interests."

Fighting words. We'll have to wait and see how this one pans out, but it's not looking good for Lord Sugar's lot.

Joe Svetlik

Joe has been writing about tech for 17 years, first on staff at T3 magazine, then in a freelance capacity for Stuff, The Sunday Times Travel Magazine, Men's Health, GQ, The Mirror, Trusted Reviews, TechRadar and many more (including What Hi-Fi?). His specialities include all things mobile, headphones and speakers that he can't justifying spending money on.