On December 4, ARMY (BTS’s fandom name) was blessed with some good news, news that some of the fandom now dubs as the best decision Big Hit Entertainment made so far.
It was revealed that the agency has registered for the trademark rights of both BTS and ARMY.
In response to various reports, Big Hit Entertainment revealed they were actively pursuing trademark rights for various phrases related to BTS.
According to the Korea International Property Rights Information Service (KIPRIS), the agency has already registered the English version of the names BTS and ARMY as of July last year.
The label has trademark rights for Bangtan boyz and BTS’s name in Korean as well.
What makes this intriguing and an unusual move is that agencies usually only trademark their artists’ group names but not the fandom names. This is why many in the fandom are expressing their gratitude for the agency who acknowledged not only BTS but the fandom that helped them rise to where they are right now.
Its important to note that copyright differs from trademark.
According to the United States Copyright Office:
copyright protects original works created in a fixed form including “literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, and certain other intellectual works.
According to the United States Patent and Trademark Office, trademark means
“Words, names, symbols, sounds or colors that distinguish goods and services from those manufactured or sold by others and to indicate the source of the goods.”
This means that Big Hit has now the rights to block people who plan on making profit of the name ARMY in relation to BTS, this has nothing to do with taking legal actions against slander or malicious comments targeted towards BTS’s fanbase, ARMY.
This is not to be confused with the English word army which refers to military forces.