In the face of the pandemic we are experiencing, a lot of information that circulates is not always accurate, and the reader is unable to identify and distinguish what is real and what is mere fake news.
Although information about COVID-19 or the coronavirus appears in newspapers, widely reported in the media, there are many speculations about its origin. The virus is possibly derivate from some wild animal.
According to the WHO (World Health Organization)*, COVID-19 belongs to the family of coronaviruses, known for causing respiratory problems for humans and animals. A new virus that had not been identified in humans until now causes the current pandemic, the one named as COVID-19.
It happens that, in Brazil, there are also registered trademarks that identify the most varied products with the word element “Corona,” in several branches of activity, such as electrical products, drinks, automobiles, portable tools, among others. Also, the expression “corona” is the Spanish word for “crown.”*.
Due to the similarity of the “corona” brands and the “coronavirus” virus family, people get confused about the origin of the disease, attributing its existence to products identified with the “corona” trademarks.*
Given this scenario, it is vital to highlight the role of the brand as a distinctive sign of the service and product, which seeks to identify a particular good for its consuming public, avoiding confusion with third parties.
The brands do not need to identify the origin of the products or services, but to maintain their distinctiveness and excellent reputation it is essential to carry out publicity actions that tell their history, the source of the products and disconnect them from any similar product or other goods with the same element, as in the case at hand.
Considering that brands protect the distinctive signs related to a specific business segment, confusion between “coronavirus” and products identified with the “corona” brand must be avoided through the broad protection of the brand against such diffuse information and also actions of disclosure and clarification by the holders.