If you're a soft-serve ice cream aficionado, you probably know what a Blizzard is. US-based Dairy Queen starting using the name Blizzard in 1946 — and now serves the sweet treats upside down (we'll get to that later). Then there's W. B. Mason, an American office products company, that has been using the name Blizzard on printer paper and bottled water sold in its stores.
Dairy Queen recently sued W. B. Mason claiming that use of its Blizzard trademark constitutes "unfair competition and false designation of origin." Just days later, W. B. Mason filed suit asking a US federal court to declare that its use of Blizzard is not infringing on Dairy Queen's Blizzard trademark. The Boston Herald reports that attorneys for W. B. Mason wrote: "Indeed, no reasonable person would ever mistakenly believe that copy paper or spring water sold by W.B. Mason and emblazoned with the W.B. MASON mark and logo emanates from, or is associated with (Dairy Queen).” W. B. Mason goes on to claim that the two companies operate in "fundamentally different business lines."
Dairy Queen's five Blizzard trademarks date back to 1952. The current iteration of Blizzards — soft-serve, mechanically mixed with broken bits of candy, cookies, baked goods, and/or fruit — debuted on the DQ menu in 1985. And, yup, Blizzards are indeed served to customers upside down. Dairy Queen workers hand you an upside down cup with a spoon stuck in the middle to show you exactly how thick the concoction is. Dairy Queen even ran a "Upside Down or Free" promotion in 2016.
Curious about how/when the upside-downness started? Start with Mental Floss' article called "Why Are Dairy Queen Blizzards Served Upside Down?" and if you want to get into the science behind it (details like air-weight ratio and viscosity), Spoon University explains it all in "The Scientific Reason Why Dairy Queen Blizzards Don't Fall."