Goats on a Roof

September 23, 2010

A restaurant owner in Door County Wisconsin is serious about protecting his “goats on the roof”  trademark.  Lars Johnson owner of Al Johnson’s Swedish Restaurant recently settled a suit against a Georgia grocer who allowed goats to graze on his shop as a means to draw business. See docket 2:09-CV-00192.

According to the registration Al Johnson’s began putting goats on the roof in 1973.  The Goats on the Roof trade mark may not be as famous as the Nike Swoosh.  But, having visited Door County, the goats on the roof certainly makes an impression.  In my travels around Wisconsin, everyone I met refers to this restaurant simply as the place with the “goats on the roof.” As far as I can tell, only my wife refers to the place as “Al Johnson’s.”

One research note we discussed looking into this case: You may search using standard and Compu-Mark design codes in both domestic and international registration databases. (We used ALL-TM)  Keep in mind, however, the codes are standardized.  This means that Westlaw adds in leading zeros and eliminates the periods.  This is common for IP services that include international materials.

So, the following design codes…

Compu-Mark Design Codes

3.4.11 Goats, sheep, moufflons, chamois
6.7.6 Built-up areas composed of flat-roofed houses
7.1.10 Flat-roofed houses
7.3.11 Roofs

TM Design Codes

03.07 Bovines, Deer, Antelopes, Goats, Sheep, Pigs
03.07.10 Goats, sheep, rams.
07.07.03 Roofs.

..are translated by Westlaw as…

Compu-Mark Design Codes

030411 Goats, sheep, moufflons, chamois
060706 Built-up areas composed of flat-roofed houses
070110 Flat-roofed houses
070311 Roofs

TM Design Codes

0307 Bovines, Deer, Antelopes, Goats, Sheep, Pigs
030710 Goats, sheep, rams.
070703 Roofs.

So, one of our queries in ALL-TM, looked like this

dcd(070703 & 0307!)