OpenAI, a leading AI research company, is seeking to trademark “GPT” in an effort to protect its brand from copycats. The move comes after the company applied to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to trademark the acronym for “Generative Pre-trained Transformer” in December, specifically in relation to its own product ChatGPT, a chatbot that has gained widespread virality since its launch last fall.
However, the USPTO recently denied OpenAI’s request to hasten the trademarking process, leaving the company waiting alongside other applicants. Jefferson Scher, a trademark attorney and chair of intellectual property group Carr & Ferrell’s trademark practice group, stated that OpenAI might need to wait another five months before the trademark is approved.
While the T in GPT stands for “Transformer,” which is also the name of a neural network developed by Google in 2017, Scher believes that OpenAI is likely to receive the trademark in due time. This will come as a relief to the company, which has faced competition from GPT clones, including a chatbot created by Elon Musk called “TruthGPT.”
The popularity of ChatGPT has been both a blessing and a curse for OpenAI. A recent study by Stanford University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology found that 14% of employees using ChatGPT in their workflow saw an increase in productivity, with the least experienced and least skilled workers completing tasks 35% faster. However, OpenAI CEO Sam Altman announced earlier this month that the company will not be releasing ChatGPT-5 anytime soon.
As the AI industry continues to grow, companies like OpenAI will need to take steps to protect their brand and intellectual property. Trademarking GPT is just one example of this, and while the process may take time, it’s a necessary step in ensuring the longevity of the company’s products and services.