Joseph Gayetty: Entrepreneur Who Revolutionized Bathroom Trips

Joseph Gayetty: Entrepreneur Who Revolutionized Bathroom Trips
Updated date:
Apr 18, 2022

Table of Contents


Have you ever sat back and tried to remember why some things were invented?

I mean, things like the curved barrel machine gun or the Venetian Blinds glasses or even the glowing car tires are just ridiculous. You can't help but think, "what was this inventor thinking"? However, this question should not be embraced today as we highlight the inventor of modern toilet paper.

JOSEPH GAYETTY
Joseph Gayetty

Humans had always gone to the restroom. Even when the "bathroom" was only "that way," behind the bushes, since the dawn of time.

When we think about toilet paper, the first term obscures the "paper" element of the object. You've probably heard stories about founders getting ideas for their businesses in unusual places, such as the shower, while driving, or even in a dream.

I like to think that our Man Gayetty mainly was concerned with people's hygiene in New York City, which was notoriously filthy. Let's look at how sanitation was handled in New York City in the 1800s.

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Brief History of Sanitation in New York City in the 1800s

It was said that New York City was filthy by the nineteenth century. In an illustrated talk at New York University's School of Medicine on July 26, Robin Nagle, an anthropology professor, detailed this intriguing history of sanitation and public health. 

Nagle's talk, titled "How Street Cleaners Saved the City: Garbage, Government, and Public Health in New York," was peppered with vivid descriptions of how the city's burgeoning sanitation system was influenced by shady dealings, two wars, repeated outbreaks of communicable disease, devastating fires, and water shortages.

Early New York was a disease breeding environment, with pigs and other animals roaming freely and people discarding their garbage and industrial wastes in public places without hesitation. Natural springs and ponds in the area became so fouled with animal and human wastes that New York was in desperate need of freshwater by the end of the 18th century.  

Early New York was a disease breeding environment

To make matters worse, in 1798, there was a significant outbreak of yellow fever, which inhabitants blamed on unclean water. By 1832, there were allegations that the city smelled so awful that passengers six miles away could use their noses to inform them when they were approaching it. Later that year, cholera struck New York, with 100 cases reported every day.

With this in mind, you can't help but wonder where Joseph Gayetty was when he decided to invent the modern commercial toilet paper. What kind of man was he anyway?

An Obscure Beginning

Many references cite that Joseph Gayetty was born in c.1817, give or take a decade, in Massachusetts, USA. Not much is known about his early years, seeing as the first mention was in the U.S. census of 1850. He was living in New York City with his wife, Margaret Louisa Bogart, and their two children. His source of living was from his work at a public house (pub). 

The Toilet Paper History Timeline

Although humans have been cleaning their bottoms for as long as they have walked the Earth, terms like "three-ply" and "extra-soft" weren't always used to describe old toilet paper. 

People relied on less excellent means to wipe their bottoms before introducing mass-produced, commercially available toilet paper in the mid-1800s and the ongoing advances achieved through the early twentieth century. So when did toilet paper become common?

It was the 1850s, and the modern sewing machine, the safety elevator, and the machine gun were all born during this creation period. Squinting at the fine print behind the eye-catching headline, readers may have been perplexed to see the first toilet paper ad for Joseph C. Gayetty's Medicated Paper, America's first commercial oldest toilet paper – the "greatest blessing of the age," he boasted.

Gayetty's announcement was unexpectedly provocative. Whereas loo roll is now regarded as a necessary household comfort, the concept of paying good money for "bum fodder" was met with a chorus of jeers from scientists in the 1850s.

Gayetty's claim that his new paper could treat piles alarmed doctors, who quickly took to the pages of renowned medical journals to mock the loo-roll pioneer.

Perhaps I need to go back even further, to pre-1857 toilet paper or even pre-pre-pre-1857 in the history of tissue paper. To put it kindly, people began "using the restroom" almost as soon as they walked the globe. So, before the Sears Roebuck catalog and Joseph Gayetty's hemorrhoid-prevention paper sheets, what happened? When was toilet paper first used and when did toilet paper become popular?

Gayetty was not the first to "discover" the first toilet paper, despite his bombastic claims. 

Who invented toilet paper roll?

The Chinese had arrived hundreds of years before with the compass, wheelbarrow, silk, and gunpowder. People in China had been using paper since the 2nd century, and it didn't take long for them to start applying it to their behinds. But why was toilet paper invented?

Although paper had been used as a wrapping and padding material in China from the 2nd century B.C., the scholar-official Yan Zhitui (531–591) wrote about the use of the first toilet paper in the world as early as approximately 589:

I don't dare to use toilet paper with quotations or commentary from the Five Classics or the names of sages on it. 

An Arab traveler visiting China in the year 851 AD, during the later Tang dynasty (618–907 AD), mentioned:

"...they [the Chinese] do not wash with water when they have done their necessities, but they only wipe themselves with paper."

When did toilet paper become widely used?

In the early 14th century, it was estimated that ten million packets of 1,000 to 10,000 sheets of toilet paper were produced annually in what is now Zhejiang. During the Ming dynasty (1368–1644 AD), an annual supply of 720,000 sheets of toilet paper (about 2 by 3 ft (60 by 90 cm)) was created for the imperial court's general usage in Nanjing, according to records from 1393. 

According to Imperial Bureau of Supplies documents from the same year, even the harsh ruler Emperor Hongwu, who ruled in the 14th century, displayed his more sensitive side by buying 15,000 sheets of extra-soft, fragrant toilet papers for his imperial household.

These were always perfumed toilet paper and highly costly to come by. In 589 A.D., a scholar, Yen Chih-Thus, wrote,

What did people use for toilet paper before it was invented?

You're undoubtedly curious what people used as toilet paper people used in the 1800s.

Rich people wiped themselves with wool, lace, or pure manila hemp paper depending on the country, weather conditions, or social customs. In contrast, the poor people used their hands when defecating into rivers, or cleaned themselves with rags and other available materials.

A sponge on a stick was the common 1800s toilet paper. And it was extensively employed in Ancient Rome. It was dipped into a pail of vinegar after each usage. Several Talmudic sources referring to ancient Jewish practice mention the use of small pebbles, which were often carried in a specific bag, dry grass, and the smooth edges of shattered ceramic vessels.

What did people use for toilet paper before it was invented?
Stick with a sponge that was being used before the advent of toilet paper.

The German physician Julius Preuss cited all of them in his classic Biblical and Talmudic Medicine (Eng. trans. Sanhedrin Press, 1978).

The German physician Julius Preuss cited

Robert Wilks, Colley Cibber, and Barton Booth practiced a pantomime production with puppets performing a prison breakdown in a lithograph by William Hogarth titled A Just View of the British Stage from 1724. The "play" is entirely made of toilet paper, as are the scripts for Hamlet, among other things.

In his novel sequence Gargantua and Pantagruel, the 16th-century French comic writer François Rabelais has his character Gargantua study ancient toilet paper and various ways to cleanse oneself after defecating. Gargantua condemns the usage of paper, rhyming,

 "Who wipes his filthy tail with paper wipes? Shall leave some chips at his ballocks." 

He concludes that "the well-downed neck of a goose" is the best cleansing medium.

Newspapers and inexpensive versions of popular books were other forms of medieval toilet paper. They were used for cleansing after the rise of publishing in the eighteenth century. Lord Chesterfield described a man who gained,

A standard edition of Horace, from which he tore up a couple of pages at a time, transported them to the required location, read them first, and then sacrificed them to Cloacina; thus was so much time gained somewhat...

Who wipes his filthy tail with paper wipes?

Toilet paper is not used in many parts of the world, mainly where toilet paper or the requisite piping for disposal is unavailable or unaffordable. Many people in many parts of the world believe utilizing water to be a much cleaner and sanitary practice than using paper. They then cleansed the hands with water and maybe soap, following cleaning with various means, for example, using a bidet.

Approximately half of the world's population does not use toilet paper. This means the toilet paper industry has grown to be enormous. About 26 billion rolls of toilet paper are sold in North America alone every year. It may come as a shock that there is a proper way to hang toilet paper.

History of Hygiene Timeline

According to Scientific research, hanging it the wrong way can lead to absenteeism, worker's compensation costs, and even lawsuits that can bankrupt a company.

So what is the correct way to hang toilet paper?

In or out? 

You can hang toilet paper in two ways: 

  1. with the open end hanging over the top 
  2. with the open end hanging inside next to the wall

Most offices hang it "over," but I've seen it suspended "under" in several lavatories.

The over/under debate is surprisingly contentious, and it is said to have sparked the most letters to Dear Abby on a single topic. I'm here now to put an end to that debate once and for all.

The proper way to hang a toilet roll, according to research, is "over." Why? Because "under" raises the chances of food-poisoning microorganisms spreading from the restroom to the rest of the office.

Even a seemingly clean office restroom is a dirty Petri dish, according to a recent study conducted at the University of Colorado:

"Researchers discovered 19 bacteria types on the doors, flooring, faucet handles, soap dispensers, and toilets of 12 public restrooms in Colorado, six men's restrooms and six women's restrooms, using a high-tech genetic sequencing method. They could spread many of the bacterium strains found through contact with contaminated surfaces."

E. coli from human excrement makes up a large portion of the germs present in public bathrooms, making it a prevalent source of food poisoning. E. coli can readily be transferred from surfaces to your fingers and subsequently to everything you eat with your hands.

This takes us to the subject of toilet paper hanging from the ceiling. When restroom users reach for toilet paper, their hands are most likely contaminated with bacteria.

If you hang the toilet paper "over," their fingers will only come into contact with the toilet paper they will use, which will then be flushed. If you hung the toilet roll "under," their fingers are likely to brush against the wall, leaving a deposit.

If this is the case, every successive restroom user risked not only picking up the bacteria that had previously been deposited but also leaving more for the following user to take up.

Also, because of the "under" hang—and the increased possibility of contacting the wall—it's more challenging to use a scrap of toilet paper to avoid touching the toilet seat, flush handle, or stall lock without collecting bacteria from the wall on your hand.

It's nearly impossible to get bacteria off your hand once it's there. Most people's method of handwashing—a couple of seconds with a dab of soap—is ineffective. Wash your hands with lather for at least 20 seconds to get them completely clean, which is approximately the time to sing "happy birthday" twice at regular speed.

If you follow that guideline, keep in mind that you're in the minority. Handwashing is a chore for most people, and if you work in a large office, I'm pretty sure that some of your coworkers avoid it totally.

After that, they go to the break room and get a box of donuts.

When food poisoning strikes at work (which happens all too frequently), the consequences can be severe. Food poisoning affected 55 employees in a Maitland, Florida office, with 25 of them ending up in the hospital. Improper handwashing," according to local authorities, is the most likely cause. (Surprise!)

You can be held accountable for food poisoning in the workplace, in addition to the apparent productivity hit of dozens of people off ill. Employees who have been poisoned can file for worker's compensation and, depending on the circumstances, file a lawsuit against you.

That isn't a joke; while most people recover from food illness within 24 hours, food sickness can cause death in the worst circumstances.

As a result, if you or your staff hang toilet paper "under," you're putting not just your employees' health at risk but also the life of your company. Now, let's get back to our legend Joseph Gayetty and his invention of toilet paper roll.

How it all started?

By 1857, Gayetty had begun his toilet paper business and was listed as being in the "medicated paper" industry. By the 1860 census, he and his wife had added three other kids to the two they had a decade ago. They also had a personal servant and a modest personal estate valued at $1000. It was also that, during the census, he said he was born in 1827 in Pennsylvania. 

Getty and his wife had four sons and a daughter. The youngest son, Henry K. Gayetty, took over the family business in 1891 when the issue of trademark ownership came up. He also controlled the trademarks and licensing.

People who used Gayetty's original toilet paper in those early days kept coming across the inventor's name. In 1857, Gayetty introduced a few commercial toilet papers, first sold in packs of 500 for $0.50 US dollars and featured a watermark of his name.

They dubbed the toilet paper as medicated paper' because this original product contained aloe. As a result, the paper would be effective against hemorrhoids, among other things. This was not a brilliant marketing strategy.

How it all started?
Gayetty’s medicated toilet paper

Gayetty is a 'Quack'

Several medical organizations have labeled Gayetty a quack. The advertisement of the following year referred to it as "The Greatest Necessity of the Age," medicated paper for the water closet. It also warned of the dangers of using toxic inks papers in sensitive body areas. A different advertisement, printed in 1859, mentions that he was offering 1,000 sheets for a dollar and that his business was at 41 Ann Street.

Gayetty is a 'Quack'

I'm sure you're curious why Gayetty was labeled a quack. Among the patent drug producers that jumped at the chance to offer alternative therapies to the American people was Joseph Gayetty. Let me tell you more about these unregulated 1800s inventions and concoctions.

Timeline of Creation of USDA

The Long History of Unregulated inventions, concoctions during the 1800s

The cost of seeing a doctor in the nineteenth century was out of reach for many individuals. Furthermore, many people dreaded the remedies offered by doctors at the time.

These manufacturers created advertising with bold promises and appeal to promote their products. To persuade the public to buy, buy, buy, drug companies used bright colors, inventive wording, and eye-catching designs.

Typically, these drugs were said to have a secret or unique component that was highly effective. It may have been a rare herb exclusively known to Native Americans or a highly purified part created in a cutting-edge lab. They marketed many patent pharmaceuticals as "cure-alls" or multi-disease cures. However, most of these treatments were made up of essential ingredients like alcohol, herbs, and plant oils. Some even contained chemicals that we now know are dangerous, such as mercury, opium, or cocaine!

Medication producers had to advertise their products differently before television and the internet. In the mid-nineteenth century, traveling salesmen would set up stalls in town squares or on the back of their horse-drawn wagons to offer their "patent remedies," which they claimed could heal everything from migraines to "feminine weakness." 

Locals would gather around the salesman and listen to their pitch, including songs or brief skits known as Traveling Medicine Shows. They organized these events to delight viewers to get them to listen longer and eventually buy the salesman's merchandise.

The Long History of Unregulated inventions, concoctions during the 1800s

Another type of advertising was also becoming increasingly prominent at the same time. Patent pharmaceuticals, as well as apparel, food, and cosmetics, were advertised on small paper cards (about 3x5 inches) known as "trade cards." They could be purchased via salesmen, local pharmacies, general stores, or mail. Unlike traditional newspaper advertisements, trade cards were an innovation in advertising because of their use of brilliant colors, the available variety of products featured, and the ease with which they could be distributed to the public. 

They were frequently produced in color and designed to be highly collectible (Hale, 2000). People created scrapbooks to keep and exhibit the trade cards they had acquired by the turn of the twentieth century.

One reason trade cards were so popular was because they were simple to make. In Europe, throughout the first part of the 1800s, lithography, a new printing method, was created. Artists could make vibrant images that could be easily transferred to paper using this method. American printers had created steam-powered lithographic presses by the mid-nineteenth century, which significantly accelerated the process. This improved technology was used by American businesses to quickly make low-cost, visually appealing advertisements (Marzio, 1971).

Medical trade cards were popular because they often featured imagery that appealed to modern consumer sensibilities, such as flower bouquets, rosy-cheeked youngsters, and animals. Unfortunately, several commercials and trade cards displayed and promoted bias towards women and undesirable racial and ethnic stereotypes.

Snake oil is a word used to describe uncontrolled and unproven pharmaceutical medications. "Snake oil salespeople" is a term used to describe people who sold these goods to make money. They derive this phrase from Clark Stanley's Snake Oil Liniment, a prominent patent treatment from the 1800s. When applied to the skin, this product claimed to contain natural snake oil, which would reduce pain and inflammation. 

The Bureau of Chemistry of the United States government evaluated this drug in 1916. It was discovered to be primarily mineral oil, with a minor bit of beef oil, capsaicin from chili peppers, turpentine, and camphor thrown in for good measure.

Images of Medication Business Cards

Images of Medication Business Cards‍

Several aesthetic trends appeared when the medical trade cards stored by Weill Cornell were analyzed. A lot of cheerful, healthy babies and small children were highlighted. Typically, the youngsters represented were girls who were Caucasian and blonde. They were observed playing with other youngsters and looking attentively at the spectator at different times. Many of these photographs appear to be intended to inspire a sense of innocence. And assist the spectator in recalling the enthusiasm and optimism of youth.

Women, in addition to children, were regularly represented. They would sometimes appear with children, holding them in well-appointed homes or lush gardens. Women were also depicted creating positions while dressed in bright, eye-catching clothing. The ladies portrayed in these early advertisements, like the children, were primarily Caucasian, though most had brown (rather than blonde) hair. These women give viewers images of ease and beauty in their current state.

They frequently showed animals on medical accessory trading cards. Cats and kittens were among the most popular animals on display. Birds, dogs, and horses, on the other hand, were shown with regularity. When animals were used, they were frequently presented in comedic scenarios that drew the spectator closer to the promoted treatment. They were sometimes used to add realism and provide a relaxing countryside view.

The aesthetic themes of vitality, hope, comfort, beauty, and peacefulness were common among the commercial images in Weill Cornell's Trade Card Collection.

The manufacturers of these patent drugs hoped that viewers would feel these emotions. These producers intended the public to see their products as attractive, something to buy, by associating them with these pleasant images and sentiments. Images were used to attract individuals to collect and conserve trade cards and sell things. Because women and children were the primary collectors of these cards, historians believe the drawings were explicitly designed to appeal to them.

It's crucial to discuss what wasn't seen in these photographs. There were no comparable photographs of individuals of color among them. While Caucasians were frequently shown in scenarios intended to inspire optimism, comfort, and health. People of color appeared as stereotypes or in racially insensitive troupes meant to elicit laughter or highlight the exotic, rare nature of a particular culture in the rare situations they were shown.

Historians have noted the problematic nature of such photographs, which portray non-white people as "others" rather than full-fledged members of society at the beginning of the century (Marcellus, 2008).

Claims based on text and medical trade cards.

Aside from marketing pictures, pharmaceutical companies used persuasive product claims, written endorsements, and catchy slogans to persuade customers to buy their products.

Unsurprisingly, product claims were one of the most common written components of trade cards. These statements were made to inform potential buyers about the medication's applications. Remedies were frequently touted as being able to treat a variety of ailments. For example, Lydia Pinkham's Vegetable Compound, a well-known patent drug, listed 22 various uses, including "ovarian difficulties... spinal paralysis... uterine tumors... indigestion... and kidney complaints."

To persuade customers to buy their products, trade cards advertised them as the "most effective," "very popular," "time-tested," "economic," "a natural wonder," or "a scientific marvel." These statements, taken together, appealed to certain aspects of public opinion to persuade the public of the medication's utility and appropriateness.

Endorsements were also widespread. When it came to persons who advocated patent pharmaceuticals, there were two types of people:

1) health professionals who suggested these prescriptions to their patients, such as physicians and pharmacists

2) Patients who could regain their health after using these drugs. These patients mainly were successful men like judges, ministers, and artists, our long-suffering wives.

Their professional position was emphasized when a man's comments were included in these recommendations. Even while they were patients, their testimonials emphasized how medicine assisted them in returning to work. When a woman's remarks were used, they frequently reported that she had been through a lot of pain or had been sick a lot. These endorsements reinforced prejudices prevalent at the turn of the century: men were supposed to be seen as intellectual providers, while women were innately weaker.

They also reached customers out through slogans. With one ad, Pond's Extract implored the public to "Never Abandon Old Friends," while another reminded them that it was "The People's Remedy..." Ponds sought to persuade the public of its product's time-honored value, as a product ready to serve everyone, by using phrases like these. Dr. Thomas' Electric Oil, for example, advertised itself with the words "The World's Greatest Healer." Thanks to this simple motto, Dr. Thomas' oil became a hugely popular and influential source of hope and health.

Claims based on text and medical trade cards.

When was modern toilet paper invented?

Back to our toilet paper tale, In 1890, Seth Wheeler obtained the earliest United States patents for toilet paper and dispensers. And in 1890, the Scott Paper Company popularized toilet paper dispensed from rolls.

When was modern toilet paper invented?

The Lawsuits

In 1891, Gayetty's brand and product were involved in a lawsuit brought by B.T. Hoogland's Sons, toilet paper dealers. Specifically, they filed suit for a trademark infringement suit against Harry K. Gayetty and the Gayetty Paper Company. Hoogland's sons claimed an unpaid debt they owed made them a rightful heir to the Gayetty name. A paper dated December 5, 1866, was allegedly given to a creditor in place of a $25 debt and later sold to B.T. Hoogland (senior) for one dollar. 

However, on January 1, 1866, J.C. Gayetty signed a ten-year contract with Demas Barnes and Company for the exclusive sale and vending of the name, which had been assigned the copyright in 1891. Despite being dismissed in 1894, a second lawsuit was filed. B.T. Hoogland's Sons next sued to stop Harry Gayetty and the Diamond Mills Paper Company from using the Gayetty name and were successful in this case. Harry Gayety appealed but he lost at the Appellate Court.

Gayetty's Medicated Paper

Finally, in July 1900, the New York Supreme Court permanently ruled against the Diamond Mills Paper Company and Harry K. Gayetty from using the name on similar paper product labels.

In 1900, an advertisement shows that New York's B.T. Hoogland's Sons distributed the "Papel Medicado De Gayetty," a paper attributed to Joseph Gayetty, the American inventor, for his invention in 1857. English versions of this advertisement appeared in 1907 as well. They marketed toilet paper until the 1920s. The production of splinter-free toilet paper by the Northern Tissue Company in 1935, also built on Gayetty's invention, put it out of circulation.

Perhaps I should backtrack and explain the distinction between copyright and trademark infringement based on the above mentioned case.

Is your company a brand as well? Do you make your own content and assets for your company? You've probably thought about how to protect your intellectual property, and you're probably wondering what the difference is between copyright and a trademark.

The Difference Between Copyright and Trademark Infringement 

Inventions, literary and artistic works pictures used in business are all examples of intellectual property, which can be regarded as intangible assets, in other words, products of the mind.

When it comes to intellectual property for firms, this might include everything from company concepts to works or procedures that result from such ideas. To that end, trademarks and copyrights, and patents are employed to legally protect intellectual property in the United States.

The significant distinction between copyright and trademark protection is that, while both protect intellectual property, they cover different sorts of assets and have other registration requirements.

Copyright covers literary and artistic materials and works, such as books and videos, and is generated automatically when the work is created. On the other hand, a trademark protects objects that help define a company's brand, such as a logo or phrase, and requires more detailed government registration for the best legal protection.

Let's inspect each of these safeguards individually to better appreciate the differences.

What is a copyright, and what does it protect?

Copyright is intellectual property protection that applies to original works and is automatically generated after their creation. Copyright covers many literary, theatrical, musical, and aesthetic results.

In brief, the original work is protected under copyright when it is created. As long as it is retained in some form. Works that aren't available in a tangible form, such as a speech that wasn't written down or recorded, on the other hand, cannot be copyrighted.

Works placed in the public domain or for which the copyright has expired cannot be copyrighted again. Although the public domain varies by country (and sometimes by category of work), it currently refers to works produced before 1923 in the United States.

The length of copyright in the United States, however, might vary. Copyright on an individual's original works lasts for the author's lifetime plus 70 years. It lasts for 95 years for works created anonymously, pseudonymously (under a false identity), and hired.

What is the best way to defend copyright?

Apart from what copyright and trademarks protect, as we briefly outlined above, another distinction between the two is how these intellectual properties are secured.

As previously stated, copyright is produced automatically when a work is created; however, there are specific steps you may take to ensure that prospective copyright infringers do not exploit your work without your consent.

Some examples are as follows:

  • You may ensure that your work is appropriately tagged, such as signed or with a watermark, and that there is a clear evolutionary imprint from the job to your firm by correctly marking it.
  • Poor man's copyright: This is the of mailing one's own work to oneself to prove that it has been in one's possession for a certain amount of time. However, copyright law makes no provision for such protection. Therefore, poor man's copyright is not a registration replacement.
  • Creative Commons: Creative Commons provides free copyright licenses that enable you to label your creative work with the freedoms you desire.
  • Use the copyright sign: At the very least, the symbol can indicate a copyrighted work.

You may also choose to register your work with the United States Copyright Office; however, this is unnecessary. To legally register for your copyright, you'll need to complete the application process, including paying a fee and providing a copy of the work to the U.S. Copyright Office.

You'll obtain a certificate of registration after completing this step, which will add your copyright to the public record. Furthermore, if registration is completed within five years of publication, it is regarded as prima facie evidence in a court of law.

What does a trademark provide protection for?

In contrast, a trademark is a type of intellectual property protection that protects words, phrases, symbols, or designs that differentiate one brand (or source of goods) from another.

As a result, a trademark protects goods like:

  • Brands
  • Logos
  • Names of companies
  • Slogans

In a nutshell, a trademark is anything that effectively labels a firm or identifies a product or service. Some well-known examples are as follows:

  • The hexagonal screw-top Tabasco bottle is a registered trademark.
  • Subway sandwiches have trademarked "footlong," which is a single word.
  • McDonald's Golden Arch is a registered trademark.

However, it's critical to understand the difference between a trademark and a service mark when it comes to trademarks. A service mark is used to differentiate one business's services from another.

The tagline "Fly the Friendly Skies" by United Airlines is an example of a service mark. The slogan that identifies the service provided by United Airlines is service marked, even though the company's name is trademarked.

All of this being said, another significant distinction between copyright and trademark is that, unlike copyrights, trademarks do not expire after a predetermined length of time.

Overall, trademark rights are derived from actual use—that is, using your mark in the course of doing business—and thus, your trademark can remain indefinitely as long as you utilize it.

However, just as copyright registration helps you better protect yourself under the law, so does official trademark registration. In a similar vein, if you complete proper documents and pay the required costs, your trademark registration can last indefinitely.

How to safeguard a Trademark?

It is not a must to have a trademark registration, but it is unquestionably one of the most acceptable ways to help protect your company's logo, brand name, or slogan.

First, make sure your branding materials aren't currently used by conducting a trademark search. Additionally, you may choose to hire a trademark attorney to assist you with trademark registration, but you can also apply to the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

To that end, if you wanted to register your company name, you would first check with your state trademark office to make sure it wasn't already in use and then finish the registration process. It's also worth noting that there's a distinction between state and federal trademark registration, with the latter providing the most robust legal protection.

Furthermore, you can file a DBA with your state or county clerk to register your business name when it comes to a business name, but this is not the same as trademarking your business name.

If you apply for your trademark with the USPTO, you'll be able to use the registered trademark symbol "®" to show that your property has been lawfully trademarked.

However, if your trademark is not registered with the USPTO, you can use the T.M. symbol to denote common-law rights in a brand, similar to how copyright law works. T.M. stands for products, and S.M. stands for services in this situation.

Again, be sure what you're trademarking isn't already in use before utilizing these symbols—and remember, just because something doesn't have a sign next to it doesn't mean it's not lawfully trademarked. 

Another topic worth revisiting or discussing is patents and their significance.

What are the benefits of patents?

A patent is essential because it protects your invention. It has the power to protect any product, design, or method that meets specific criteria for originality, practicability, appropriateness, and utility. It usually protects an invention for up to 20 years. This period begins as soon as your patent is filed.

Obtaining a Patent

The first step is to apply to the Patent and Trademark Office of the United States. They must complete the application process after you have published a description of your innovation, publicly disclosed the product, sold it or made your item available for commercial use.

Fortunately, the one-year requirement allows the inventor to evaluate their product before investing in a patent application. Take extreme caution not to take too long since this could lead to the theft of your patent. You can learn from how Alexander Graham Bell stole the idea for one of the essential elements of the telephone from Elisha Gray. When the phone was invented, it was simply a matter of whose patent was accepted first.

Another example is from Gayetty's commercial disaster. Because tissue paper has such a long history of "prior art," it would have been difficult to pass the novelty test and get a patent on it. 


Gayetty's Commercial Disaster

To begin with, Gayetty's product was a high-end item. According to newspaper adverts at the period, a $1 (about $30 now) earned you 1,000 sheets. He hadn't started rolling in yet.

"However, all those who fail to use it methodically for the Water Closet are doing themselves an injustice."

The advertisement claimed that four medicines mixed with the paper pulp "make it a definite cure and prevention of piles."

Gayetty declared, "All other paper is poisonous." Paper that had printed material on it was particularly awful. He stated that "printer's ink is a foul poison... (and) chronic usage of printed paper" would eventually result in piles or hemorrhoids.

Following Gayetty's commercial failure, several other innovators developed successful goods. The advancements and research did not end.

Following Gayetty's Steps

From the 1930s, there was an evolution of toilet paper. Different companies worked on Gayetty's idea, and toilet paper became an essential item in every area of the globe.

The Scott brothers of Philadelphia's Scott Paper Co. began marketing toilet paper on rolls in 1890, transforming the industry. It wasn't a novel concept, but the issue was delicate and hadn't been brought up before. (Ads mentioning toilet paper rolls date back to at least 1886.)

Scotts wanted to create paper goods, but when they saw how popular home bathroom plumbing was, they realized they could make a lot of money making toilet paper.

Irvin Scott's son, Arthur Scott, took over the company in 1900 and ran it until 1914. Three of the most well-known Scott goods were developed due to his vision, and they became household names.

Arthur Scott believed in manufacturing high-quality products, selling them at a low price, and promoting them through advertising. Scott was the first to advertise bathroom tissue on television in 1941, and he brought out intriguing new items that went beyond traditional techniques.

Scott had become one of the most well-known brands globally by 1979, after more than a century of financial success. Kimberly-Clark couldn't help but notice how successful it was.

Scott developed green products in 2017, focusing on a sustainable future, garnering praise, and confirming its position as an industry leader. Oliver Hewlett Hicks of Chicago got a patent for a novel type of roll-on on April 9, 1889. 

When the necessary number of sheets are plucked off the roll, it can be challenging to find the next sheet if it is not hanging down, he explained in his application.

To make the end easier to recognize, Hicks proposed a two-ply role having uneven layers of sheets. (An inventor later proposed a "roll" shaped like a kidney bean to solve the same problem.) Neither solution worked, and the problem still exists.) However, progress was made.

Seth Wheeler of Albany, New York, got patent No. 459,516 on September 15, 1891, which was designed to ensure that just one sheet of paper fell off the roll at a time.

"Many methods designed to prevent waste have been developed since the emergence of rolls of paper for the functions mentioned earlier," Wheeler stated in his patent application. "All of these devices were more or less sophisticated, prone to malfunction, and costly to... produce."

His perforation design would help to prevent the unintentional and wasteful unraveling of a lrge number of sheets. The invention of "splinter-free toilet paper" was another positive development.

Northern Paper Mills in Wisconsin is said to have boasted of its super-refined toilet paper in the early 1900s, which was devoid of minute wood pulp splinters leftover from the paper-making process. Its toilet paper was marketed as "soft and oh very gentle" by 1943. Not so with products from a long time ago.

President Donald Trump is among the politicians who have appeared on the rolls. Before World War II, several British toilet paper sheets included portraits of Adolf Hitler and other Nazi leaders. According to the BBC, one such roll was auctioned off last year. The roll was discovered in a barn and dated from the late 1930s before WWII.

Apart from these British toilet paper sheets with photos of Adolf Hitler, the toilet paper shortage may be a footnote in an otherwise sad and terrible account when the history of toilet paper is told.

The TP Rush During the Pandemic

Stay-at-home orders led people to buy vast quantities of household items, particularly toilet paper, towards the start of the pandemic. According to IRI, a Chicago-based market research agency, demand for toilet paper reached new heights in March 2020, with $1.45 billion in sales in the 4 weeks ending March 29, up 112 percent from the previous year.

Last summer, as the Delta variation fueled a COVID-19 rebirth, market research revealed that nearly 1 in 2 Americans began stockpiling toilet paper again, fearing that supplies might run out. The increased demand sends shock-waves across the retail chain, and a growing number of outlets are running out of toilet paper.

"Toilet paper can't really be substituted compared to many other goods," says Professor Frank H. Farley, who specializes in human motivation. "It's a one-of-a-kind consumer item that's seen as essential. In this way, it contributes to the survivor mentality, implying that having it is essential for survival."

A Brief History of Toilet Paper

Toilet paper is a vital link to civilization, health, and cleanliness in modern society. But there is no obvious substitute; there are alternatives.

Alternatives to Toilet Paper and Other Paper Hygiene Products

First and foremost, it is critical to establish no substitute for toilet paper at the most fundamental level. Other paper products are more likely to clump together and cause clogs than toilet paper, which is meant to break up readily in water.

However, if you're in need and toilet paper isn't available, there are a few typical substitutes.

1. Bidet

Bidet

First and foremost, why not start using a bidet like the rest of Europe? If shortages of toilet paper have taught us anything, it's that we're way too reliant on it.

This idea could not only help aid during times of panic shopping, but it could also help save trees in the long run. According to Scientific American, switching to a bidet would save 15 million trees every year in the United States. With that in mind, the impact we could have in the United Kingdom would be more than a drop in the bucket.

What exactly is a bidet?

A bidet is a type of toilet. It's usually a low basin separate from the main bathroom, although it can also be built into the toilet. After using the toilet, you kneel over the bidet and wash.

You might have been on vacation in Japan and wondered what that strange, tiny extra toilet in the bathroom was. At first, using a Japanese smart toilet can be intimidating. From the bidet to the deodorizer, you have a lot of buttons to choose from. The entire experience might feel like you're sitting at the controls of a Star Trek ship.

Because of the apparent foolishness and implicit horror of assigning "intelligence" to something that directly handles our excrement, the "Japanese smart toilet" has become somewhat of a running gag in western pop culture. According to a slew of movies, T.V. programs, and cartoons, Japanese toilets can do everything from heat up the seat to self-cleaning and doing your taxes, and if they keep on this track, we'll soon have to start apologizing to them before each use. In the West, intelligent toilets are generally regarded as a big joke. They are‌ serious business in Japan.

TOTO, the world's largest toilet maker, recorded profits of $311 million in 2017. This was mainly owing to their unique Washlets, an electronic bidet incorporated into the toilet seat that can now be found in 70-80% of Japanese houses, surpassing the 50 million milestones in sales. Many Japanese people now state that they could never go back to using toilet paper in their bathrooms. Therefore, Washlet toilets can now be seen in homes and in hotels, department stores, train stations, and other public locations.

In Japan, intelligent toilets have become so ubiquitous that the Japan Sanitary Equipment Industry Association had to regulate the pictograms used in smart toilet buttons in 2018 to avoid visitor confusion. Here's a brief description of what they are:

How to Use a Smart Toilet in Japan

  • Get ready

Otohime (meaning "sound princess") is a gadget that used to be stored in a separate box installed on the walls of public restrooms but is now found in newest Japanese toilets and usually is recognizable by a musical note mark.

You begin by pushing the otohime button or, sometimes, waving your hand in front of the device. If you are a shy bladder or colon, it will make a flushing sound that will cover your bathroom noises, providing a more comfortable toilet session. A device like Otohime will undoubtedly be hailed as a godsend in the United States, where people typically use hand dryers to time their expulsion with someone outside the stall. It could be the reason TOTO's sales in the United States have been consistently increasing in recent years.

  • The Washlet

 Use the Washlet bidet function once you've finished your business. Many supporters of bidets welcome them as a viable replacement to toilet paper, yet they're a team in Japan. You wipe down the toilet using toilet paper first, then use the Washlet spray feature to finish the job.

TOTO has owned the Washlet trademark since 1980. They modeled it after the European bidet, but with the extra benefit of being located within the toilet seat, which is essential in typically tiny Japanese homes where a separate bidet would be impossible to install. Even yet, the original Washlet retailed for roughly $660 in 1980, so it wasn't an easy sale at the time. The hardest part was getting the water's angle and temperature right, as it was challenging to gather personal information from customers.

As a result, TOTO's engineers took it upon themselves (and below) to test their Washlets and discovered the Golden Rule. The devices appeared to operate best when the water was held at 38 degrees Celsius (100 degrees Fahrenheit) and sprayed out at a 43-degree angle.

  • Flushing

Another fantastic feature of Japanese toilets is the deodorizer, which filters out all unwanted odors, so you don't have to flee the country or change your name every time someone uses the toilet after you. The charcoal-filter deodorizer is automatic on modern models and turns on as soon as you sit down, but older toilets may require you to switch it on with a push of a button, commonly labeled "ON/OFF." It's unquestionably preferable to continuous courtesy flushes, which are a waste of water and, coincidentally, another area in which Japanese toilets thrive.

To begin with, Japanese ceramic toilets were terrible water guzzlers, using up to 20 liters (almost 5 gallons) of water for a single flush. TOTO addressed this issue in 2002 with the Tornado Flush, which releases water from the bowl's sides, forcing it to spin naturally. Contrasted to water coming in from above, this system uses a lot less water to flush our waste. TOTO toilets used only 3.8 liters (1 gallon) per flush in 2012, and their urinals used only 1.2 liters (0.3 of a gallon.)

The flush handle may be on the side of the tank, or they may replace it with a push-button, a motion-control sensor, or a button within the main control box hung on the wall, depending on the model.

  • Clean up

Self-cleaning features like CeFiONtect, a proprietary antifouling technology created by TOTO in 1999, are one of the best-kept secrets of Japanese toilets. Ceramic toilets collect dirt and bacteria readily due to their distinctive design. Still, by first coating them in the unique CeFiONtect glaze, the bowels become more stain-resistant and require fewer chemicals to clean. This is also the purpose of the ewater+ technology, which disinfects the bowl by misting electrolyzed water inside it.

Toilets from TOTO and other brands are not only more environmentally friendly, but they are also actively preserving the environment. The majority of America's toilet paper comes from Canada's boreal forests, which store nearly 12% of the world's carbon, according to a report by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). By switching to Japanese bidets, the U.S. may save uncountable acres of woodlands from being cut down just to be later flushed down the toilet.

So, what does the future hold for intelligent toilets in Japan? TOTO debuted the Neorest NX, a next-generation bathroom, in 2018, for $6,000, and for that money, it had better be able to do your taxes as well.

One would question why Japan is responsible for so many advancements, and the answer may lie in their unflappable attitude and lack of inhibitions when it comes to bathrooms. They are the creators of the TOTO Museum in Kitakyushu (which has been visited over 180,000 times since its inception). And the Unko ("Poop") Museums in Yokohama and Tokyo celebrate scatological humor in all of its manifestations. 

Anyway, Japan remains on the cutting edge of toilet technology, and whatever advancements emerge in that field in the future will almost certainly come from this country.

2. Showerhead

Showerhead

Let's move on to an improvised solution. In an emergency, this tip will come in handy. Yes, cleaning yourself with your showerhead will keep you hygienic and make you feel refreshed. This concept is comparable to the bidet in that you use warm water instead of toilet paper after using the restroom. Simple.

Of course, you don't want to use the same showerhead as when you're taking a shower. This idea will work best if you have a bath with a shower fixture on the faucet (as well as a separate shower!).

3. Nose Tissues

Nose Tissues

If you don't have toilet paper, nose tissues might be a good substitute. While these tissues have a comparable density to toilet paper, they are slightly different. According to Supply Time's experts, the production method for the two forms of tissue is different. Both are made of pulped paper. But, whereas toilet paper is designed to disintegrate quickly in water, nose and facial tissues are not.

While using facial or nose tissues will undoubtedly be pleasant, ponder one concern. Because this sort of paper isn't designed to degrade as quickly as toilet paper, flushing it down the toilet could be dangerous. As a result, washing them is not recommended. If required, wrap the used facial or nasal tissue in a diaper sack or rubbish bag before throwing it away. As a result, you won't cause any unwelcome blockages down the road.

3. Flushable Wipes

Let's speak about flushable wipes for a second. In essence, they are wet wipes that may be flushed down the toilet. Hurrah! While the world's stores are rapidly running out of toilet paper, flushable wipes may be available online and at some retailers.

When choosing a product for yourself, make sure to read the label thoroughly. Look for wipes that say they're flushable on the package. You can use baby wipes for diverse purposes; however, they cannot be flushed. Certain products may state this on the front or back of their packaging.

Flushable wipes are a costly alternative to toilet paper. Therefore, they aren't for everyone. While you may obtain a few packs of these wipes at a low price, you should think about the long-term cost of utilizing them.

4. Washable wipes

Finally, here's an environmentally friendly alternative to toilet paper. Have you ever heard of washable wipes? These are textiles that you wash regularly. That is, you are assisting the environment while resolving your issue. While most of these are marketed as baby wipe substitutes, they might also be used as toilet paper substitutes.

There are various well-known manufacturers of these environmentally friendly wipes. In some, an All-In-One Premium Kit with everything you need to get started is available. A fresh wipe container, a mucky wipe container, washable wipes, essential oils (for cleaning! ), and bags are all included in the bundle. To find out how to wash them, go to the brand's website and look at the directions.

Needless to say, if you choose this alternative, you must ensure that you follow the strictest hygiene guidelines. To make this a practical and economical solution, you'll need to store old wipes in a box and wash them all together. If the prospect of doing so makes you uncomfortable, consider one of the other toilet paper options listed above.

5. Baby wipes

Baby wipes are the most suitable for sensitive skin because they don't irritate it or leave lint behind. Certain people may prefer them over toilet paper because they make them feel cleaner.

Adult wet wipes are nearly comparable to baby wipes in appearance and function. If baby wipes or adult wet wipes are unavailable, clean-up wipes can be used instead.

Some wipes merely have water or a hint of alcohol in them, while others have disinfectants like bleach or ammonia. As a result, it's a good idea to double-check the ingredients and avoid anything that disinfects surfaces. Toilet paper is less expensive than wipes.

The Top Toilet Paper Producers in the World

Wipes should not be flushed, according to the Guidelines for Assessing the Flushability of Disposable Nonwoven Products (GD4). According to a 2019 investigation, manufacturers' wipes labeled "flushable" do not break down in sewers.

Ultimately, there is no substitute for toilet paper at the most basic level. Therefore, despite Gayetty's sketchy past, we can't help but applaud him for modernizing our restroom excursions.

The Key Takeaway

The most important takeaway is to evaluate the market before launching a new product.

The first commercially packaged toilet paper was created by Joseph Gayetty. Still, his product failed because most Americans at the time were unwilling to spend money on immaculate paper when their bathrooms and outhouses were loaded with yesterday's newspapers.

The takeaway is to take your time assessing the market, with a focus on whether today's consumers are ready to accept your new product or service. The evaluation could help you avoid a disaster and facilitate a smooth transition to your next project.

But although Gayetty's invention was frowned upon and even ridiculed, he was able to make it into something for others to build on and reform. His tenacity and hilarious marketing content is an excellent example for entrepreneurs today. Today, facilities all over the world make use of toilet paper, and it is all because of Mr. Gayetty.

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