McDonald’s is the latest large firm to submit trademark applications for virtual products, services, and even virtual restaurants and cafés, following in the footsteps of Meta, Facebook’s parent company, and its envisioned virtual world, the metaverse.
Josh Gerben, a trademark lawyer whose company monitors new trademark registrations on a regular basis, was the first to notice the requests on Twitter on Wednesday, pointing out ten McDonald’s applications.
The McDonald’s trademark applications, which were filed on February 4, include requests to trademark “running a virtual restaurant including actual and virtual items,” as well as “operating a virtual restaurant online incorporating home delivery.”
Within its virtual McCafe, it also wants to offer “on-line actual and virtual concerts” and other entertainment services.
Panera Bread filed for the “Paneraverse” on February 3, seeking to trademark its downloadable, virtual food and beverage products “for usage in virtual worlds,” as well as NFTs and the ability to purchase genuine things in the virtual world and have them delivered.
McDonald’s and Panera Bread have joined large firms like Nike, Walmart, and Sketchers in submitting identical documents in the last three months to prepare for a future virtual establishment revolution.
“It’s quite evident this is coming when you see this critical mass of huge firms filing so many new trademark applications,” Gerben told Forbes.