King, developer of the hugely popular Candy Crush Saga, has not yet been granted the trademark for the word "candy" in the U.S., as has been widely reported.
The British game maker applied for the trademark in the U.S. nearly a year ago, and on Jan. 15 the application was "approved for publication."
However, that does not mean King possesses the trademark for the word "candy." Rather, the "approved for publication" status means the public has 30 days to issue any statements of opposition against King gaining the rights to the "candy" trademark, according to information on the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office website.
If after 30 days, no opposition is filed or opposition is unsuccessful, King's registration for the "candy" trademark will proceed to the next stage of the trademark registration process.
Although the company says it possesses the trademark for "candy" in Europe, it does not yet hold that trademark in the U.S.
King made news this week after it began contacting a handful of app developers, telling them to remove their apps from the Apple App Store or prove that their use of the word "candy" does not infringe on its trademark.
To protest King's trademark registration, several game developers have created a "Candy Jam" website that encourages others to make games themed around candy.
"Reaching a point where a company is allowed to trademark a common word is complete nonsense," Laurent Raymond, one of the creators of the Candy Jam website, told The Times. "You don't need to have a great understanding of the laws to understand that this is ridiculous and totally unethical."