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."