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Well, to be fair, the brand name should have clued you in.
"Paging through the movie's press kit, I came across this quote attributed to Amy Jo Johnson, who plays Kimberly, the Pink Power Ranger: "
Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie is a mix between Star Wars and The Wizard of Oz." I wonder if Amy Jo actually said "TM" when she was delivering that wonderfully fresh and spontaneous quote, which is so much more involved than anything she says in the movie."
A humorous way to make Things™ stand out is to add Random Trademark
Symbols® everywhere. May be used as a Social Commentary® on our increasingly homogenised, commercialised World®, but more often than not, done just because of the Rule of Funny
™. They can also be used in Sarcasm Mode
(perhaps in conjunction with Scare Quotes
) to passive-aggressively imply that something exists only as a concept™; for example, some people refer to "Global Warming™". Another sarcastic variation is to sprinkle Trade Snark
over your paraphrase of an opponent's position
to imply that he's using the term in question as a meaningless buzzword®
For added Spice™, try adding Registered Trademark® and Copyright© Symbols®©™. (This is not actually how copyright™ works.)
And of course it's always fun to have characters with Medium Awareness
™ compliment others on their expert use of the "™," especially if the copyright symbol appears on the word as written but not the word as spoken.
Compare Stuck on Band-Aid Brand
for a similarly awkward attempt to acknowledge ownership of a brand, minus the Lampshade Hanging
. Disney Owns This Trope
is related; it's when you make a joke that a concept, especially one that shouldn't
belong to a company, is now a trademark.
open/close all folders
- There was an Intel radio ad where this was lampshaded — one of the announcers mentioned "Intel(TM)", and the other commented, "Good use of the trademark symbol!"
Anime & Manga®
Films™ — Live-Action®
- The Love Guru:
- Guru Pitka uses these on advice-giving acronyms.
- And on the posters for the film itself, the title has a "TM" by it.
- On an episode of The Big Bang Theory, Howard uses Google Street View to find the location of the set of America's Next Top Model. He reacts, "God bless you, Google Street View Registered Trademark!"
- The Colbert Report:
- The last line of Stephen Colbert's "Another Christmas Song" is "Copyright Stephen Colbert!"
- He occasionally adds "Trademark" after made-up words, with one note directed specifically at Fox News stating that he held the copyright on the phrase "No Fact Zone".
- A serious employment of Trade Snark from Countdown with Keith Olbermann: in one of his Special Comments, the host refers to the way the September 11 attacks are used as a fear-mongering tactic by politicians, to the point where it is nothing more than a product used to win votes. Throughout the comment, Olbermann drives it into our minds by referring to the attacks as "9/11(tm)" over and over.
- Jackson Stewart and Oliver Oken of Hannah Montana ended their (in)famous cheese jerky rap with "Sizzlin' Stewart & Smokin' Oken Enterprises. Patent pending." Also, Rico owns the North American rights to his catch phrases "Hey-O!" and "Muahahahaha!"
- The Doctor Who tie-in website for Cybus Industries includes an interview with John Lumic which is dotted with ®s, ©s and ™s, including Cybus Industries©, Cybusnet™, Upgrade™, Sleep Replacement System® and Czechoslovenia™.
- The Groovegrass Boyz, a country music/funk band, released Groovegrass® 101 featuring the Groovegrass Boyz™.
- The interstitial tracks of the P.D.Q. Bach album Two Pianos Are Better Than One play the role of an automated touch tone service called "Inter-Ear TelecommuniCulturePhone™." The trademark symbol is pronounced every time, represented by a recording of Schickele cheerily saying "Trademark!" shifted up to chipmunk pitch.
- The WWF (WWE) No Mercy manual (and probably others) had a TM symbol for every superstar (wrestler) mentioned in the opening blurb. As in: "Matt Hardy™ went on to fight Christian™..."
- "All World Wrestling Entertainment programming, talent names, images, likenesses, slogans, wrestling moves, trademarks, logos and copyrights are the exclusive property of World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. and its subsidiaries."
- According to a minor wrestler just starting, the entire reason that Vince McMahon has them take face names: so he can own the name and persona.
- When appearing in WWE, David Heath initially wrestled under the name Gangrel™, a character in Vampire: The Masquerade and a trademark of White Wolf. Cue WWE flashing the trademark upon returning from commercial every time Gangrel was about to appear.
- The Incredible Hulk Hogan gained ire from Marvel, and, under the threat of a lawsuit, the WWE had to pay residuals to Marvel every time the name was used. Pointedly, when Hogan went to the WCW, he quickly changed his character to "Hollywood Hogan", presumably because TBS wasn't thrilled about paying.
- It appears often in other materials; the Tabletop Game Know Your Role also has scattered trademark symbols on various wrestlers. It's not omnipresent, but it's likely to show up when a group are listed.
- Hilariously, the wrestler Steve Borden actually owns the trademark for his ring name Sting. The musician of the same name has to pay Steve whenever he performs in the U.S. However, Sting the wrestler is very reasonable about it and the fee is extremely low (around $1 and the occasional ticket).
- The old gamer legend that back in the day of their apparently short-lived Indiana Jones role-playing game, TSR (then-owners of D&D) actually claimed a trademark on the term "Nazi".
- Munchkin has Professor Tesla's Electrical Protective Device (pat. pending).
- Also used in Paranoia, with one secret society using "The Force is with us, Tee-Em" as part of its recognition symbol. And then there's the Semantics Control firms, which actively try to inflict this upon everyone in Alpha Complex (leading to much hilarity and no small number of weapons discharges).
- A supplement for the Vampire: The Masquerade mockbuster Vampire: Undeath claimed a trademark on, of all things, "Realistic Fiction". Needless to say, commentators had a lot of fun with this.
- Games Workshop's Lord of the Rings models have trademarks accompanying all character names on the boxes, which is perfectly justifiable considering they don't own the rights to the characters as they're producing the game on license from New Line Cinema. Doesn't make it any less silly when an article on White Dwarf includes said trademark includes said trademarks every time they mention Bilbo™ or Gandalf™. They seem to have caught on on how silly it looks so later issues have just written the names in italics.
- I'm O.K - A Murder Simulator had the final boss a giant (Mario) with a trademark symbol hanging in mid air next to him at all times.
- The Monkey Island games have them in the dialog text, but not the voice acting in the later games. Some characters seem to notice their presence even so; in Escape from Monkey Island, a lawyer complements Guybrush on "Nice use of the ™" in Melee Island™. Even Guybrush says the word "™" while he summons his wife Elaine to the Flotsam Island Courthouse in Tales of Monkey Island.
- EVE Online:
- CCP hf is known for having patches that will be released "Soon™". And not just patches: planetary interaction, atmospheric flight, walking in stations, and numerous other promised features have been coming Soon™ for years. Even admittedly unfinished COSMOS sites have agents handing you missions with the helpful and in-depth description of "Soon™".
- The symbol for one of the factions — Caldari State — is a giant ©-Symbol
- Soon™ shows up in other MMOs as well. When players ask Blizzard Entertainment employees about when something long anticipated in World of Warcraft will be released, one of the most common responses is "Soon™" Lampshaded by the developers for Blizzard Dota where the game is advertised to be realeased "Soonish™", with the voice-over annoyed saying "Seriously".
- It shows up on The Lord of the Rings Online forums, as well. One of the bluenames made a list over all the various trademarks used, which details the difference between a patch arriving Soon™, "Soon", Soon, soon, and other similar trademars. Most of which, of course, doesn't give you any clue whatsoever to how long you'll have to wait for the patch.
- From a Have a Nice Death sequence in the VGA remake of Space Quest I:
Scott: Let's run that one again with the aid of our new How-He-Blew-It Cam (TM) and Chalkboard (TM). I have to say that carefully, Mark. Every time we mention something with a trademark or copyright, the lawyers come out to feed.
- A Nightmare on Elm Street (NES): FREDDY'S™ COMING!
- The Nameless Mod: The subtitles for the speech of Goats shows that they trademarked slightly misspelled versions of every other word. The most important one is "Melk™", which they use as a drug for some reason.
- Portal 2 has some of this in the game, but it mostly shows up in the promotional material.
Asbestos Is Harmless!™
- Tends to be used to a ridiculous degree in a lot of Dragon Ball lisenced games: the characters in character select screens often have trademark symbols after their names. Good thing it doesn't carry over to dialogue or their lifebars...
- In the DOS game Contraption Zack, the title hero introduces himself with:
Zack: Hey guys! How's it going? My name is Zack©™
- Every time someone mentions the term RPG in Segagaga, there's a disclaimer that pops out to tell us that "RPGs are a trademark of Bandai" note
- The Namco Museum Compilation Rereleases on the PlayStation was originally five volumes, each represented on the cover as a letter from Namco's logo: N, A, M, C, and O. When Namco Museum Encore was later released on the same system, Namco followed the previous pattern by having the boxart be the ® from the Namco logo.
- The Stanley Parable Adventure Line™ has the ™ symbol stuck on in the closed captions every time It™'s mentioned.
- Homestar Runner has Sbemailiarized Entertainment™ © ® LLC,,. Esq., which becomes Sbemailiarized Entertainment™ © ® LLC,,. GQ and Sbemailiarized Entertainment™ © ® LLC,,. FHM.
- Retarded Animal Babies blows this out the window in episode 3. Matt Groening says that he is here to prevent RAB from out-grossing his "vastly superior Simpsons©®™©®©©®©™™©©™™™™™™ movie. (Make sure subtitles are on.)"
- Destroy The Godmodder®: the Curse of Repetition™ has been trademarked by twin.
- This bash.org quote.
- In AH.com: The Series, Thande's all-purpose suggestion to solve any problem is "Daring Commando Raid™"
- ScrewAttack's list of Worst Fighting Games Ever says "Batman (trademark) and Superman (trademark)" during Justice League Task Force.
- Charlie from Charlieissocoolike does this constantly regarding the phrase "What I decided to do." He pronounces the ™ Tee Em.
- This RPGnet forum post. RPGnet threads on Palladium Books get this treatment a lot.
- Hellfire Commentaries:
- This exchange from Sonic CD playthrough, describing the race against Metal Sonic:
And don't forget Robotnik is chasing you with a Death Laser™. FTA:
And if you get caught by that, the Death Laser— FTA:
—you will die. FTA:
Yes, I trademarked death; that's right. FTA: ™.
- Also, during the Dramatic Reading of the Total Justice miniseries, every mention of 'Fractal Tech Gear' is followed by an interjection of 'trademark' by Helldragon.
- Hardcore™: We'll probably get modded for this.
- Red Letter Media: Mr. Plinkett does use this to great effect on his Attack of the Clones Review. He also uses it in his Avatar review.
- The Whateley Universe doesn't bother with a lot of trademark and copyright symbols, but Phase routinely puts the trademark and copyright symbols on every (mythical) Goodkind Industries product that gets mentioned, in large part because he is one of the Goodkinds.
- The Simpsons:
- Momcorp apparently holds the trademarks on "screen door" and "love", among other words.
- The Nimbus's laser cannon has a maximum power setting labeled Hyperdeath™.
- Trespassers will be "deathsecuted™"
- In an episode of Tiny Toon Adventures, a Bat-signal appears in the air, with a "TM" quickly flying up next to it.
- From the Animaniacs videotape "You Will Buy This Video":
Join me, as I gleefully lead you on a journey of the mind, courtesy of my latest invention... HypnoVision
Trademark, Brain? Brain:
Yes, Pinky. Trademark.
- Bucky Bailey's Bully Buckers™ in the South Park episode "Butterballs" is pronounced, verbatim, "Bully Buckers, trademark," every single time.
- "The expression "Breakfast of Champions" is a registered trademark of General Mills, Inc. for use on a breakfast cereal product. The use of the identical expression as the title for Kurt Vonnegut's book is not intended to indicate an association with or sponsorship by General Mills, nor is it intended to disparage their fine products." In this case, this note wasn't needed since trademarks are limited in the type of products they can apply to. While the limits can be vaguely defined, no court would consider this an infringement. However, both companies most likely settled an arrangement just in case (as seen commonly in copyright with fair use cases), which probably included adding that notice to the book.
- In a dismaying example from Real Life, Barney's catchphrase. And the names of his friends. Super-dee-Duper™, Baby Bop™!
- Back when UNIX was first released as a commercial product in 1983, AT&T started insisting that people refer to it as "the UNIX(tm) Operating System" or something similar to that. People on Usenet almost immediately started referring to the OS as "UN*X" as a subtle Take That, and there was even one BSD-based product called "MT XINU" whose advertising included such things as a BSD-powered X-Wing rocketing away from an AT&T logo wreathed in flames. This became less popular after AT&T sold off the UNIX group in the mid-1990s.
- Ironically, during the late 1990s, the Open Source Unix clone Linux ran into trademark trouble when a random troll named William Della Croce secured the trademark and attempted to shake down the community for usage rights. Della Croce disappeared back into the woodwork when the trademark was revoked and reassigned to Linus Torvalds himself. Around the same time, some people on Usenet and web forums started replacing "UN*X" with "*n?x", a filename pattern that matches both "Unix" and "Linux".
- Thanks to a lot of software cross-compatibility, operating systems like Linux, BSD forks, and Mac's Mach/BSD kernel have become known as "*NIX" platforms.
- AT&T was so notorious for this that more than one paper included (in the page one footnotes on trademarks) a statement like "and UNIX, although not mentioned in this paper, is a registered trademark of AT&T."
- Another Roger Ebert example, from his review of Transformers 2: Revenge of the Fallen: "The dialog of the Autobots®, Decepticons® and Otherbots® is meaningless word flap."
- Numerous A-list porn stars have their names (or, more accurately, their stage names) trademarked. This is disconcerting enough, but particularly weird in the case of alt-porn star Stoya, whose stage name is no more than a clipped form of her real last name.
- Tell him that's silly to Harlan Ellison, who actually did register his name as a trademark.
- Real estate agents in the National Association of Realtors must be called REALTORS®. Yes, with all caps.
- The word spam only refers to unsolicited emails. In order for it to be the canned meat product, it must be SPAM®.
- Remember: This image has been manipulated by Adobe® Photoshop® software.
- Any reference to The World Cup on ESPN is written as "World Cup™". Even on the ticker or lower-thirds, regardless.
- As a Shout-Out to This Very Wiki, TV critic Jaime Weinman always adds a ™ and usually capitalizes the word Trope™ whenever he uses it.
- "Curtis Got Slapped by a White Teacher". Not an example of actual snark, as the document seems to be genuine (though it must be seen to be believed). Ms. Bowen probably intended to trademark her son's name and her own (as if that weren't strange enough), but she has instead copyrighted them; this may result from her apparent belief, as stated in the letter's opening paragraph, that one's children are one's "intellectual property". (A perusal of the entire document, however, reveals that a discrepancy in nomenclature is the least of this woman's problems.)
- Dave Barry parodied this in his book "In Cyberspace" when talking about Windows 95 and Microsoft.
- Beyoncé and Jay-Z decided to trademark their baby's name.
- @ your library® is a registered trademark of the American Library Association. "The Campaign for America's Libraries can only be a success if libraries across the country-and across the world-use the trademark consistently in accordance with the following guidelines."
- There was a lot of snark over the heavy-handed way the London Organising Commitee for the Olympic Games™ claimed trademark not just of the London Summer Olympics 2012™ but of Summer 2012™ and London 2012™, in any contexts.
- "Anti-consumerist collective" ®™ark.
Tradesnark, Humorous, Things, Random, Trademark, Symbols, Commentary, Funny, World, Spice and Examples are all trademarks and/or registered trademarks of Trope Co. in the United States and/or other countries. All rights reserved.