Media 10 wins Ideal Home name legal battle

Exhibition and events organiser Media 10 has successfully defended legal proceedings brought by Time Inc UK, publisher of Ideal Home magazine, winning the right to extend its business under the Ideal Home name beyond just shows.

Media 10 can now legally use the Ideal Home name as part of an online shop
Media 10 can now legally use the Ideal Home name as part of an online shop

The claim was brought to the Intellectual Property & Enterprise Court by Time Inc UK two years ago in regards to Media 10 using the words Ideal Home in connection with an online shop. Time Inc UK, formerly IPC Media, claimed the usage infringed its exclusive trademark rights for the name. The case was heard on 13 October in the Court of Appeal before three appeal judges.

Both parties have co-existed using the Ideal Home name in the home interest arena for nearly 100 years.

Lee Newton, chief executive of Media 10, said that he was delighted that the case had been decided in Media 10’s favour. "The Court has recognised that Media 10 has rights in the Ideal Home name as well as in Ideal Home Show and that this has always been the case. Time Inc therefore has no exclusive right to the name and must share the rights with Media 10."

A spokesperson from Time Inc UK told Event: "We initially brought the action against Media 10 to protect its trademark for the trading in online goods and services by one of its market-leading brands, Ideal Home. Time Inc UK brought the appeal against the original decision because, although the judge at the initial hearing confirmed the validity of our trademark, we were disappointed that the Court did not accept that Media 10’s move into our online territory, way beyond its core business of running exhibitions, infringed our trademark. 

"The Court of Appeal has now upheld the initial decision; however, it has also confirmed, encouragingly, that any expansion by Media 10 into our core activity of publishing may result in the deception of consumers. Despite the appeal outcome, consumers can be assured that as Time Inc UK’s trademark remains valid, we will continue to offer the highest quality multi-platform content, goods and services online and through our iconic magazine, under the Ideal Home brand."

Time Inc initially lost the legal battle in 2012 and appealed the decision this January, claiming the judge had made mistakes in his assessment of infringement. Media 10 contested the appeal, arguing the judge had correctly decided that the magazine’s rights had not been infringed.

Media 10 currently organises Ideal Home Show events in London, Manchester and Scotland, as well as Christmas versions of the exhibition.

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