According to the ECJ, LEGO's play brick was excluded from trade mark protection under Art. 7(1)(e)(ii), as it consisted exclusively of the shape of the product which was necessary to obtain a technical result. The most important element of the LEGO toy brick was the rows of studs on the top of the brick. This was deemed to achieve the technical effect of the assembly of the toy bricks. In its decision, the ECJ emphasised that technical features may not be monopolised by means of trade mark law
A phrase, word, symbol, or even a device can be trademarked. The ECJ held that a shape could not be registered as a trademark if all its essential characteristics performed a technical function.