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This refers to using a TM symbol for puzzles.

On this site, there are a few instances where the OPs have decided to use the Trade Mark symbol TM for the type of puzzle they have come up with. For example Words/Phrases combination for a particular type of puzzle comes with a TM symbol.

Having worked in the IP (Intellectual Property) field in US, here is my understanding of the use of either TM or RM symbol:

  1. Any individual or organization can choose to trade mark their word/logo for products and services. But the protection for that trade marked word/phrase is limited.

  2. The individual or company can decide to Register the Trade Mark with the Govt Patent/Trade Mark office. It involves TM searches and costs. If the Govt. agency allows the TM and registers it, then the company can start using the symbol RM for it. Then they get a significant protection under the law.

  3. The same word/logo can be RMed for completely different fields. It does happen.

So my understanding is that one can TM anything without going to any Govt agency (in US). But until the TM is registered the protection is very limited.

Can puzzles or words in puzzles be RM? Is Sudoku a RM? No one on any site seems to use it that way. Is there a trade mark policy for this site?

Importantly, on this site are we legally required to use the TM symbol? Or is it just a courtesy?

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    $\begingroup$ I always read the TM symbol as a bit tounge-in-cheek. "These words are so important that they merit a trademark!". As another example, this puzzle uses no less than three TM symbols in a row, both to meet the 15-character limit for titles and to emphasize the kind of maze-variant it is. $\endgroup$ – bobble Dec 23 '20 at 16:09
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You are not required to use the ™ symbol, and there is no actual trademarking going on (as far as I'm aware). As bobble mentions in a comment:

I always read the TM symbol as a bit tongue-in-cheek. "These words are so important that they merit a trademark!". As another example, this puzzle uses no less than three TM symbols in a row, both to meet the 15-character limit for titles and to emphasize the kind of maze-variant it is.

The ™ symbols in titles are meant as jokes; nothing more.

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  • $\begingroup$ Thanks. But that is not always the case. Here is a recent example stating a TM by JLee. "This is in the spirit of the What is a Word/Phrase™ series started by JLee with a special brand of Phrase™ and Word™" It seems like JLee has used TM for this and not as a joke. $\endgroup$ – DrD Dec 24 '20 at 16:06
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    $\begingroup$ @DrD No, that's still a joke - JLee hasn't trademarked anything. The original puzzle of this type used the ™ symbol as a joke; later, people made similar puzzles, and chose to pay homage to the original one. It is not a requirement, though, and there is no actual trademarking going on. For instance, this puzzle by Rand al'Thor has no trademark symbol. $\endgroup$ – Deusovi Dec 24 '20 at 16:55

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