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Simmons abandons devil’s horns trademark bid

The USPTO has received a 'letter of abandonment' from the Kiss frontman ending his attempt to trademark a hand gesture most associated with Ronnie James Dio

By Jon Chapple on 23 Jun 2017

Gene Simmons, Kiss, Azkena Rock 2010, Alberto Cabello

image © Alberto Cabello

To the surprise of absolutely no one, Gene Simmons has dropped his bid to trademark the ‘devil’s horns’ gesture for use on stage.

Simmons (pictured) filed an application with the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) earlier this month to register “a hand gesture with the index and small fingers extended upward and the thumb extended perpendicular” for “entertainment, namely live, performances by a musical artist.”

The Kiss frontman claimed he was the first to use the sign of the horns – which is also “I love you” in American sign language – as far back as November 1974.

However, the application has now been withdrawn after USPTO received a “letter of express abandonment” on 20 June.

Most legal experts considered his bid to trademark the gesture to have little chance of success, with the gesture most associated with the late Ronnie James Dio.

Simmons’ Gene Simmons Company has owned a total of 173 trademarks, including the ‘money bag’ symbol with a dollar sign and the phrases “$#it girls say” and “I want to marry a millionaire” for use on clothing.


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