Beware! T-Mobile Owns the Color Magenta

I’m not sure I fully understand… should that have been written the color “Magenta™”? The absurdity is probably confusing to you as well. The total hue domination by T-Mobile and its bigger Deutsche Telekom (DT) has been going on for several years, but has gained more attention lately. DT not only trademarked magenta, they also have a trademark on the use of their two 2 color logo… More can be read at servicemarks.

Don’t worry trademarks only apply to the industry sector that they are registered under and since DT applied for their trademark in the tele-communications sector you just can’t use the color magenta around anything to do with phones, digital media… oh and just about anything on the internet.

Here is a screenshot of the T-Mobile USA website with their trademark highlighted:
T-Mobile Trademarks the Color Magenta
I found some legal text outlining the details of the DT claim of the color magenta

The plaintiff, Deutsche Telekom AG, which uses the colour “magenta” for designating its services and in its advertisements and/or commercials, has been the owner of the colour mark No. 395 52 630 “magenta” (RAL 4010) since September 12, 2000 which was registered on the basis of a proven secondary meaning (i. a. for goods and services in the field of tele-communications). Furthermore, the plaintiff is also the proprietor of Community colour mark “magenta” registered on August 3, 2000.

I also found an older article from 2001 where DT was suing a On-Demand book publisher for using magenta in an ad campaign.

To promote their service, my-favorite-book launched an advertising campaign in May. Its advertisements in German magazines and newspapers came in different colors – green, blue, orange, grey, yellow and magenta. It was the last one that didn’t go down well with Deutsche Telekom, nicknamed “the pink giant” because of its use of the color in Germany. “We have registered the color of magenta as a trademark in the telecom and online services sector,” Telekom spokesman Peter Kespohl says. “We have to go after infringers to protect this trademark.” Utz Karpenstein, spokesman for my-favorite-book, thinks this is odd. “So if Deutsche Post would register its postal yellow as a trademark, nobody could use yellow anymore? The world would get pretty gray if everybody did that.”
VIA 2001 Article from

Share your thoughts about this and help reclaim magenta here.

Some Magenta Color Palette Inspiration

*Only use as inspiration for projects not created in the “tele-communications” sector.

CMYK Spinning Plates

Love Song SoftLightes

Love/Hate magenta ramp

The Boutique Little Girls

lack of smack CMYK's friend
…I wonder if my friends over at Red Interactive Agency know they could be the proud trademark owners of the color red… Boy!, think about all the other companies they could sue… the Red Cross, Project Red, Santa Clause…

Author: COLOURlover
My name is Darius A Monsef IV & my friends call me Bub(s)(ba). Chief Lover at / Cofounder of Founder, Philanthropist, Designer, Builder & Writer. P.S. I love you.