Halloween – celebration and intellectual property
As the end of October is approaching, one can observe as Halloween related articles are being displayed in stores and supermarkets.
Halloween is a festival of ghosts which is observed on 31st October. This festival does not originate from the Polish tradition, but it is mainly celebrated in USA and other Anglo-Saxon countries. Its most recognizable symbol is a curved pumpkin in the shape of a scary face which is lit from inside by a candle – a jack-o’-lantern.
There are many customs connected with celebration of Halloween, the most popular of which is a kids’ play called „trick or treat”, in which children in scary costumes travel from house to house in the neighborhood asking for a sweet with a phrase “trick or treat”, and play tricks on homeowners if no “treat” is given to them.
Despite many controversies, from year to year Halloween is gaining some popularity and currently is also celebrated in a number of non-Anglo-Saxon countries, where this tradition has not existed before, also in Poland from about 1990s, however on a smaller scale.
A festival of commercialism?
In USA, Halloween is one of the most commercialized celebrations, obviously right after Christmas. It is estimated that the spendings of Americans during the Halloween period range annually from 6 to 9 billion US dollars. According to the estimates, only in 2019 the total of 8.8 billion US dollars was spent on the US market on sweets, costumes, parties, or even pet costumes and other Halloween themes.
Considering great profits which are made every year through the Halloween period by manufacturers and sellers of a wide range of Halloween dedicated articles, there is no wonder that they are taking an effort to protect the exclusive rights to their articles by means of tools which are guaranteed under the provisions of intellectual property law.
How to protect one’s products intended for Halloween?