The frazzled mom in desperate need of an adult beverage is quite the lucrative target market these days -- and one two companies are willing to fight over: The makers of MommyJuice wine are trying to get a California court to rule they aren't violating the trademark of rival Mommy's Time Out wine.
It sounds like a bitter dispute, but actually trademark conflicts between winemakers are more common than you might think. As anyone who's ever visited a wine store knows, the market is already saturated with wacky wine labels for nearly every occasion and personality; conceiving of a new name and/or target market that hasn't already been taken is more than half the battle. But the lawyer for MommyJuice is arguing there's plenty of room in the industry for two Mommy wines. After all:
Mommy is a generic word that they [Mommy's Time Out] don't have a monopoly on.
He has a point, definitely. And, then there's the fact that to actually prove a trademark has been violated, Mommy's Time Out must show that the MommyJuice label will create confusion in the minds of consumers.
Personally, I don't see how there'd be much confusion between the two (provided the majority of moms buying the wine are sober enough to read the label). Are both wines marketed to stressed out moms? Yes. But the cute MommyJuice label shows a mom juggling multiple mom tasks; to me, it says that this very capable mom deserves a tasty glass of wine in the mix. The Mommy's Time Out label, on the other hand, is more clever, riffing off the "timeout" that a mom at her wits' end might want to give her kids.
I'm going to go out on a limb here and say that most wine-drinking moms are amused -- and even flattered -- that there are not one but two drinks marketed specifically to them. Though a judge may rule there's not room in the market for both, the irony, of course, is that there's never enough wine for mommy.