bubbles-blowing.jpgOrange County – Crayola, the globally famous manufacturer of crayons, is in a fight over bubbles.  It seems that the patent for colored bubbles, owned by competitor C2C Technologies, could very well threaten the existence of Crayola’s own washable colored bubble product released earlier this year.

The Pennsylvania-based crayon giant also known as Binney & Smith, is trying to convince the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) to eighty-six its competitor’s bubble patent.  Zubbles, named by Popular Science as Innovation of the Year in 2005, made its claim to fame as being the first colored soap bubbles that are non-staining and non-toxic.  Zubbles simply fade away when exposed to air, pressure, and water.  C2C Technologies was awarded the patent for the colored bubbles on March 22, 2011.

In a re-examination petition to prove that the technology behind Zubbles is neither new nor unique, Crayola argued, “Uniformly colored bubbles are in the public domain, and have been there for many years.”  The petition was filed by Crayola the same day the patent was awarded to C2C and will give the parties an opportunity to discuss a settlement.  Requesting re-examination of the patent at issue is a typical first move in patent litigation.

Marc Matsoff, a partner in C2C and owner of Jamm Companies, a distributor of Zubbles, defended the patent by stating, “If colored bubbles were so easy and we aren’t doing anything new, why hasn’t everyone come out with colored bubbles?”  He went on to say that he is optimistic that a settlement can be reached between the two companies that would allow them to cooperate with each other over the technology and possibly allow Crayola to use it.  Nevertheless, he also said that C2C would consider legal action against Crayola if the patent is  upheld.

Representatives for Crayola declined to comment on the issue.