Italian Supreme Court claims Buddha as non distinctive.
With the decision 1277/2015 the Italian Court stated that nobody is allowed to use exclusively a religion icon like the Buddha to distinguish products or services. The world famous bar “Buddha Bar” belonging to the “George V Eatertainment” and “George V Records” did not obtain protection for its name against an Italian entrepreneur owner of the “Buddha - Cafè” in Milan, Italy.
The Supreme Court stated that Buddha is not only evocative of a religion but also of philosophical, philanthropic and cultural matters, related to many different customs of today’s society. As a consequence the commercial use of such charismatic icon, followed around the world by million of devotees, cannot constitute a commercial monopoly for entrepreneurial use.
The “George V” ’s appeal was in fact rejected, as the Supreme Court ruled against the degradation to a merely descriptive function of the Buddha.