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English definition of “secondary meaning”

secondary meaning

noun [C or U]    
LAW if particular common words, patterns, etc. are considered to have a secondary meaning, they are so closely connected in people's minds with a particular product or service that they can be protected as a trademark: Surnames are not given protection as a trademark until they achieve secondary meaning through extensive advertising or long use.
(Definition of secondary meaning noun from the Cambridge Business English Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)
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