Dave Hester of the television show "Storage Wars" and rapper Trey Songz are fighting over the right to use the word YUUUP as a "signature sound". Via an article in the New York Post,
Hester, however, argues that Songz’ version “resembles an animal-like or non-human squeal which begins with a distinct ‘yeeee’ sound before finishing with a squeal-like ‘uuuup’ sound.”
That’s “distinct and different from Hester’s more monosyllabic sounding guttural auction bidding phrase...which is meant to convey the meaning of ‘yes,’ ” court papers say.What do you think?
COMMENT - They don't sound the same at all to me. I don't hear the /p/ at the end of the Trey Songz version. Also, notice all the different spellings of the sound (not surprising but how do you trademark a sound based on spelling). I think they will need the services of a forensic linguist and the trademark will have to be based upon a phonetic transcription.
The reason I reposted the above portion of the post is that I really want to hear what readers think. Do you think the sounds are similar? Do you think a sound like this should be trademarkable? What do you think about the various spellings? Is this a matter of trademarking a word, a series of letters, a sound, or some combination of the three?
I have begun work on an MSc in forensic linguistics and the subject of the trademarkability of sounds is one I am considering for a paper. Please share any and all thoughts you may have on the subject by clicking on the comment button.