There's been quite some confusion in the press lately as it's revealed that Meryl Streep has applied for trademark protection of her name to prevent others from using it. Only, the reasons stated aren't the ones you'd necessarily jump to first.

Meryl Streep at the premiere for 'The Post'Meryl Streep at the premiere for 'The Post'

According to the New York Daily News, the 68-year-old wants exclusive rights to the use of her name in regards to 'live, televised, and movie appearances', 'speaking engagements' and 'autograph signings'. While there have been many other celebrities who have made similar moves, it's unclear what has made the actress apply at this stage in her career.

It's not wholly unconventional for celebrities to appeal to the US Trademark Office for prevention of the use of their name on things like merchandise and perfume and so on, but Meryl's application appears to refer to impersonations of some description.

However, an expert in intellectual property laws has explained that it's more likely to do with commercial use on movie websites, though of course the trademark wouldn't be able to stop people referring to 'Meryl Streep' altogether.

'I don't know if it's late in Meryl Streep's career. Maybe she's got a long career ahead of her. But she's older than most people trademarking their names', lawyer George Sevier told the BBC. 'It seems unlikely that someone is going to offer after-dinner speaking in the name of Meryl Streep unless it is Meryl Streep. It's probably mostly to stop people using her name on the internet.'

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Other celebrities who have taken the business decision to trademark their name include David and Victoria Beckham as well as their four children, Paris Hilton and 50 Cent. Others who have applied include Sean Connery, Jay Z and Beyoncé for their children, Alex Ferguson and Taylor Swift - the latter of whom is thought to have made around 60 trademark applications.