So it begins, a company is applying to trademark Makerspace in the UK:

Question is, should we be doing anything about it, and should we be doing anything about Hackspace.

There must be some prior art for this?

Makerspace boxes or something?


We should trademark it. Even if we merely sit on the fact that we have, this can be enough to send a message to people that it’s at some level protected, as is happening with a company attempting to trademark Makerspace.

We should absolutely trademark Hackspace.

Can we also put in a counter-application for Makerspace?


Though it’s not free. , coincidentally there’s also and

At the least we should be opposing the Gratnell’s application. Anyone any idea how we do this?


Its for a specific use we’re not interested in…isn’t it?

To me going after Makerspace is less important than Hackspace. Especially when those in other countries have tried and failed to trademark Makerspace ( and Makerspace is more popular as a definition in America (thanks mainly to O’Reilly and Make’).

While we could, instead, spend the limited resources reinforcing and protecting the term Hackspace.

I’m not against people doing something about it, though, granted, you didn’t ask for my opinion, you asked for how we oppose the application, this appears to be related to filing an opposition? though I’m sure others whom are more knowledgeable can speak up.

O’Reilly is a good shout - if they knew about this application then they would probably spend time and money opposing it, saving us from doing it

Its for a specific use we’re not interested in…isn’t it?

It only covers certain classes of physical goods, so it looks that way to
me. The relevant class for a hackspace/makerspace would seem to be:
Class 41

Education; providing of training; entertainment; sporting and cultural
And possibly:
Class 42

Scientific and technological services and research and design relating
thereto; industrial analysis and research services; design and development
of computer hardware and software
To register for both of those would cost £270 per trademark, not a great
deal of money.


Even if O’Rilley put in an opposition to it, we should also be doing so, as
it would strengthen our position potentially at a later date, as a
community and as a group with some level of hold over the name. That’s not
to say that I think we should be chucking huge resources at fighting it in
detriment to everything else we’re doing, but I do think it’s important
that we do form some sort of an opposition. Furthermore I think any group
that’s part of the org that uses the term ‘makerspace’ in either their
literature or their trading/company name should likely co-sign the letter
to show it’s not just one company, but a coalition.

It might also be worth reaching out to any friendly IP lawyers we know and
seeing if we can get some pro-bono advice on this, as I’m sure there are a
few lawyers in our digital rolodexes that might be up for helping.

I have some experience in this in a previous life.

Yes we have prior use but not in the classifications that they are going for.

The community argument would be that it is passing off, basically trying to confuse the general public that it is somehow related to or approved by the maker community.

We could apply to register our own trade mark in the appropriate classes however if we did, we would have to stop other people using it, or risk loosing it ourselves through generalisation.

That said, their tweet suggests they might be dropping the mark, a full statement will come tomorrow.

Tomorrow is after the period for objections which ended today, so it’s probably too late to object anyway.

Gratnells have put out a statement that they are not going to pursue the trademark. Nice response.

People thought they were dropping the trademark. My interpretation is that they’re not, though I could be mistaken.

For the purpose of archive because of the statement they’ve made:

To be honest this shows me that we should really be moving to trademark if
companies are going to start moving in in a predatory way.

@stanto: Where are you seeing that they’re going through with it?

I like “duly waited three months to see if there was any objection. There was none.” given that the tweet objection came before the 3 months was up and their statement came out the day after (so I believe).

I honestly don’t think they meant anything bad by it though, it would be a push to say they thought “Look at these hugely popular Makerspaces that are popping up, lets create some drawers to profit off them!” I guess they trademark all their new products and their mark for storage products is unlikely to affect us.

That said, as previously mentioned it would cost ~£270 per term (i.e. Hackspace & Makerspace) to register them so it’s probably worth it. I’ve registered a trademark but it was a little while ago, I recall you can offer different marks within the same registration, I think I did “Where Dial” and “WhereDial” and I don’t remember it costing extra. If possible (and especially if it’s free) I guess we might want to go for Hackspace, Makerspace, Hackerspace & Makespace but perhaps those last two are unnecessary.


My interpretation of their wording. May not be a reflection of the truth.

Personally think it would be really useful to try and get all the spaces round an chat/email chain talking about this.

Anyone from Newcastle on here, we really need them to be on board first.