As some of you will no doubt know, the world of romance is in an uproar because an author by the name of Faleena Hopkins got cocky!
As in, literally… got cocky!
Yup, an author has trademarked the work Cocky for her book series.
When I first heard this, I did what some of you are probably doing right now. I squinted at the screen, scratched my head, and thought, that’s not possible… is it?
Well, it turns out, it kind of is.
Though there are many questionable things about this. The woman might, actually, get away with it.
Here is a very interesting article that lays out what she has done and how she has done it Legal Inspiration Article but I’m not going to go into all that. Though I do advise reading the article as it’s very enlightening, in short, she has trademarked the word cocky for a series title and the style of the font when used in relation to that word in a book title. (Though there is some debate about if she had the right to trademark the font.)
I’m more interested in what would possess an author to do this.
Faleena Hopkins claims the word has been trademarked because readers were buying other authors books believing they were part of her series.
Hmmm, I call bullcrap!
Are we to believe that, though her readers can read her books, they are not capable of reading the name of the author who wrote the books they are purchasing? Last time I checked, most authors have their names in nice big writing on their book covers. (I know I do.)
So why would she do this?
My guess is, for the publicity. They say any publicity is good publicity and I can only assume that she is hoping this rings true. While this news is not making big waves yet, if people fight her then it might in the future and Hopkins is apparently not hiding what she has done. Though I have not seen proof of this, Hopkins has allegedly sent out cease and desist letters telling other authors to change their titles and even had Amazon remove some books from sale.
I don’t need to tell you, none of this is going down well. In a community where we try to support each other, I find it amazing that someone would turn on others in this way and risk alienating themselves. I have no idea what her end game is but I can’t see it going well. I will admit though, I’m glad I don’t have the word cocky in any of my book titles but it does beg the question… what is next?
If by chance she succeeds with this, how long before someone else follows.
What if someone trademarked the to word Vampire or Shifter? or how about Duke or Viscount?
The possibilities are mind-boggling and, if I’m honest, a little scary.
There is no knowing where this will end but, in my humble opinion, no author has the right to own a word.