What Services Are Included in Trademark Class 41?


Trademark Class 41 is the so-called International Class for Education and Entertainment services. 

Whether you are a teacher or other educator, the leader of a religious institution, a writer and author, or an 1980s hardcore punk rock band, Trademark Class 41 is the appropriate class in which to file your Federal trademark registration application with the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO)

First, what are the International Classes used for trademark registration? And what sorts of services, specifically, fit into Trademark Class 41? 

What the Trademark International Classes? 

Trademarks registrations, as administered by the USPTO, are divided into a variety of different categories of various products or services known as “International Classes,” or “ICs.” 

They are “international” classes because they are utilized across the international map for the trademark registration systems used in other countries as well as in the US. 

There are 45 such International Classes. Classes 1-34 designate different types of goods, or products, sold by a trademark registrant. Classes 34-45 designate services sold by registrants. 

Trademark Class 41, therefore, is a class used in conjunction with service mark registration applications. If you are selling craft beer or board games, for example, Trademark Class 45 would not be applicable. Those are goods

Why are the trademark International Classes necessary? 

First, they are for the administrative convenience of the USPTO. If your application is not in the same Class as a registration already granted for a confusingly similar trademark, that your Classes differ will not save your application from a USPTO Likelihood of Confusion rejection

A trademark may only be registered with the USPTO if it is being used in interstate (across state lines) commerce in connection with the sale of a product or service. 

That is, you cannot register a trademark simply because you coined an interesting term or drew an interesting design and want to “protect it.” 

Trademark registration and trademark law in the US generally is designed to offer a guarantee to US consumers that what they are buying under a given brand is what they think they are buying. It is a guarantee that the source of a product or service sold under a name or with a logo design in the US is being sold by the person or company that consumers expect to be selling it. 

It is a consumer protection measure, in short. 

Of course, from your standpoint, Federal trademark registration offers more value than simply protecting your consumer reputation.  

Trademark registration is indeed, like Copyright registration, a form of intellectual property ownership. It offers you the exclusive right to use a name or slogan or logo in connection with the sale of your product or service. 

However, unlike Copyright registration and protection, which persists for a given amount of time depending on the date on which you registered the Copyright, you only retain a trademark registration so long as you continue to use it. 

To register a trademark, that said, a proposed mark must be unique enough to be recognized as yours by consumers. 

The USPTO will not allow any trademark to register if it believes that there is any likelihood that a consumer (anywhere in the US) will be confused as to who is selling the product or service under that name, slogan, or logo. 

However, it is possible that the product or service being sold is so different from those sold by another person under a similar (or exactly the same) trademark that both can be registered as Federal trademarks. 

The International Classes, although administrative conveniences for the USPTO, at least provide a starting point for ascertaining whether you are, first, filing your trademark registration application properly—and, second, whether they may be a conflict with one already registered. 

Services Included in Trademark Class 41

So what services are specifically included in Trademark Class 41? 

The stated heading of Trademark Class 41 is “Education and Entertainment.” However, these are very broad descriptors of what services are actually included here. 

The USPTO’s TMEP (Trademark Examiner’s Manual of Procedure) describes Trademark Class 41 as including “mainly services consisting of all forms of education or training, services having the basic aim of the entertainment, amusement or recreation of people, as well as the presentation of works of visual art or literature to the public for cultural or educational purposes.” 

So it doesn’t include farming or brick-laying, that’s clear, but, otherwise, Trademark Class 41 may include many services which might not be at first apparent. 

In particular, Trademark Class 41 includes the following according to the TMEP: 

  • Organization of exhibitions for cultural or educational purposes (symposiums, etc.); 
  • Translation and language interpretation services; 
  • Publication of books and texts (other than “publicity texts”); 
  • New reporting services; 
  • Photography;
  • Film direction and production services; 
  • Cultural, educational or entertainment services provided by amusement parks, circuses, zoos, art galleries, and museums; 
  • Sports and fitness training services; 
  • Animal training (!); 
  • Online gaming services; 
  • Gambling services and the organization of lotteries; 
  • Ticket reservation and booking services for entertainment and sporting events; 
  • Certain writing services. 

Despite this listing, which is both broad and yet limited, quite a few services that would not seem to be implicated in this breakdown are, in fact, also included in Trademark Class 41. 

Take, for example, the punk rock band’s services noted in the introduction above. Concert tour t-shirt and other merchandise sales and album sales would not be included in Trademark Class 41. However, live music performance services would be included. 

Some Examples of Registrations in Trademark Class 41

To illustrate the above, here is a listing of a few different sorts of services for which registrations have been applied for and granted under Trademark Class 41: 

Presumably, this is a Led Zeppelin “tribute” band operating in or around the State of Washington. This registration was granted under Class 41 for “Entertainment, namely, live performances by a musical band.” 

This New Age-ish church (which this author’s mother may or may not have required that he attend as a young boy, long ago) registered this design mark in a number of different Classes for a variety of services. It was registered in Trademark Class 41, however, for “Religious and spiritual education services, namely, classes, retreats, workshops, seminars and online courses for continuing education as well as ministerial education.” 

This slogan was registered by Ringling Bros. – Barnum & Bailey under Trademark Class 41 for “Entertainment services in the form of a circus.” 

This design mark was registered under Trademark Class 9 for downloadable podcasts in the field of education—but also under Trademark Class 41 for publishing books in the field of education and for arranging and conducting of conferences in the field of education, as well as for providing a website featuring blogs and non-downloadable publications in the nature of activity worksheets, reading lists, and product recommendations in the field of education. 

This word mark was registered under Trademark Class 41 for “Entertainment services, namely, providing online browser-based video games, providing online video games, and providing non-downloadable videos in the field of video games.” 

These are just a few examples. Any service providing information or entertainment, generally, may likely implicate Trademark Class 41. 

How to Prove Use in Commerce Under Trademark Class 41

To prove use in commerce in a trademark registration application, you must supply a Specimen along with your application supplying evidence of that use. 

For Trademark Class 41, what sort of Specimen is appropriate? 

It must be some documentation showing the mark used in connection with the advertising of the sorts of education and entertainment-related services included in Trademark Class 41. 

While this could mean copies of advertising materials with contact information, including brochures or even photographs of billboards, it largely, these days, means website screenshots with appropriate time/date/URL information captured. 

A Specimen cannot be “merely promotional.” A business card, for example, is not an acceptable Specimen for the USPTO because it does not show actual mark use to the consuming public at large. 

One of the most valuable services provided by Michigan trademark attorneys is to ensure that your application is not rejected for failure to provide the necessary Specimen evidencing use. 

Trademark Class 41: The Bottom Line

The bottom line with regard to Trademark Class 41 is that, if you are considering filing a US trademark registration application, your best odds of success come from retaining an experienced Michigan trademark attorney who will ensure that your application is filed properly and in the right International Class to begin with. 

Noble Path Trademark Law is a boutique US law practice located in Metro Detroit and assisting entrepreneurs, solopreneurs, artists, musicians, start-ups, and larger enterprises with robust intellectual property portfolios, and others in all industries with trademark registration, trademark renewal, trademark monitoring, and Office Action refusal response matters. 

We offer virtual consultations, premium customer service, and the expertise you need to maximize your odds of trademark registration success. 

Click the “Register Your Trademark” button below to schedule your initial consultation and to begin your brand protection journey.