If you’ve been paying attention to hot topics in the Albany area you have certainly heard about the dispute between two businesses with similar names.

A question on Facebook started a firestorm of conflict between two businesses with similar names in the Albany area, actually, they’re located in the same neighborhood.

One of the businesses involved is a wellness and fitness center located at 165 South Pearl St. called Root3d. One of the co-owners, Jamel Mosely, says that he got his name because he acknowledges three life dimensions of mind, body, and soul, hence the 3 in the business’s name. Mosely said he began his business back in 2019 as an expansion of his co-owners yoga classes. He says it became a place for Black, indigenous, and people of color to gather together.

The other is a restaurant named Rooted, operated by Steuben Street Market, located at 54 North Pearl St.

According to Times Union, Mosely says he became aware of the restaurant when he received a request for a refund on his Facebook page. Mosely knew that it had to be a mixup because his business does not sell food; it's a yoga studio and wellness center. He did not respond to the request for a refund, instead, he made a simple post on his Facebook page asking “Does anyone know the owners of Steuben Street market?” He went on to say, “They decided to open a restaurant called Rooted on N. Pearl St., right down the street from our wellness studio Root3d on S. Pearl St.”

The owner of Rooted, Charissa Tonkin, says that it was a huge mistake. She said that she was talking to a group of friends in July when they came up with the name. The name came from people being “rooted” at home during the pandemic.

Ms. Tonkin says she checked for the availability of the name and never came up with Root3d in her research back in July. She says that she honestly believed that the name was4 available.

Rooted has been in the business for about three months now. Ms. Tonkin says that she’s invested money in the name and promotion of her business. She says that the business name will not be changed because it wasn’t done maliciously. She said, “We are in different industries, and we’re not competing.“

What are your thoughts, are the names too similar, and should it make a difference? Would you change your business name?

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