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OpenAI can’t register ‘GPT’ as a trademark — yet

An image of OpenAI’s logo, which looks like a stylized and symmetrical braid.
Image: OpenAI

The US Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) has denied OpenAI’s application to register the word GPT, which means generative pre-trained transformer, saying GPT is too general a term to register and can prevent competitors from correctly describing their products as a GPT.

OpenAI argued in its application that GPT is not a descriptive word — that GPT isn’t such a general term that consumers would “immediately understand” what it means.

The PTO wrote in its February 6th decision that it doesn’t matter if consumers don’t know what GPT means — because those who do use the technology understand GPT refers to a general type of software, not just OpenAI products.

Since the rise of generative AI, many other AI services have added GPT to product…

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