31
Oct/08

Naming This Post "Same Great Taste" Would Have Been Inappropriate


Last year, small children ingested beads of toy named AQUA DOTS, which contained a substance similar to GHB, colloquially known as the date rape drug. The manufacturer has now re-branded AQUA DOTS as PIXOS.

Filed under: Branding


30
Oct/08

Apparent No Illegibility Defense In The UK


Out-law.com: “Defence of poor quality trademark reproduction rejected by Court of Appeal“:

A man has tried to overturn a conviction by claiming that he could not have infringed a trade mark because his copy of it was so poor. Gary Boulter has been refused permission to appeal his conviction of criminal trade mark infringement.



30
Oct/08

"Common Law Trademarks On The Internet"


Brian Berlandi: “What State Am I In: Common Law Trademarks On The Internet“:

This essay explores the interaction between common law trade-
marks and the Internet—a relationship that has yet to be scrutinized by
the intellectual property and Internet communities. More specifically, it
strains to identify a common law mark’s territorial zone of protection
with respect to the Internet. This is an ambitious endeavor from the
start, for there is no case law or published academic material available
or directly on-point. As a result, this essay will not be a critique of judi-
cial precedent or academic opinion. Instead, it offers a premonition of
future case law and a foreshadowing of legal scenarios that might soon
be faced by common law trademark owners throughout the U.S.

HT: Steve N.



30
Oct/08

Wassup WIth The Wassup Parody


Turns out that the director of the original Wassup commercial for Bud had retained the rights and had merely licensed the property to Busch, and that’s why he can do a ‘parody’ for Obama. Story here.



30
Oct/08

Rainy Day Fun For Trademark Lawyers


Go to the Twitter Search Engine and put in your favorite trademarks as search terms, as well as such chestnuts as the word ‘replica.’ You will be shocked to learn that some people are using the Internets to promote counterfeit goods.

Filed under: Branding


29
Oct/08

Hershey v Chocolate 'Couch Bar'


hershey art van.jpeg
Art Van sells furniture. Truck is pictured above. Hershey protested. Interestingly, this complaint contains, in addition to trade dress claims, a conversion claim. Conversion usually involves defendant maintaining control over a chattel. I’m aware of conversion theories applied to intangible property but usually where a chattel bears a relationship to a property right (such as a security certificate or a domain name). If you’re familiar with the use of conversion as applied to trademarks, please leave a comment.
In any event, Hershey obtained a TRO against use of the truck on its ‘dilution by blurring’ theory. Complaint and decision below (I think there is a mistake on page 29, para. E of the decision, that says Defendant when I think the Court meant Plaintiff).



29
Oct/08

Out Of The Closet Thrift Store v Out Of The Closet Consignment Shop


Here’s the problem with national spotlights. Gov Palin said that she shops at the OUT OF THE CLOSET consignment shop in Alaska. A not for profit AIDS organization alleging prior registered rights in the term has now protested.
Word Mark OUT OF THE CLOSET THRIFT STORE
Goods and Services IC 042. US 100 101. G & S: retail store services and thrift store services in the field of used and donated clothing, appliances, electronic goods, toys, tools, housewares, furniture, records, cassettes, compact discs, bicycles, books, jewelry, carpets, gymnasium equipment, lawn mowers, motor vehicles, men’s, women’s, and children’s clothing and shoes, antiques, durable medical equipment, bric-a-brac, and knickknacks. FIRST USE: 19901000. FIRST USE IN COMMERCE: 19901000
Filing Date March 4, 1996
Registration Number 2048924
Registration Date April 1, 1997
Owner (REGISTRANT) AIDS Healthcare Foundation CORPORATION CALIFORNIA 6255 West Sunset Boulevard Twenty-First Floor Los Angeles CALIFORNIA 900288073
Affidavit Text SECT 15. SECT 8 (6-YR). SECTION 8(10-YR) 20070423.



28
Oct/08

"Google Settles With AAP. Authors Guild"


Publishers Weekly: “Google Settles with AAP, Authors Guild“:

Google has reached an out-of-court-settlement with the Authors Guild and the AAP involving two separate lawsuit brought by the organizations against Google’s Library Search program that made scans of books from libraries, including books under copyright. The settlement includes a $125 million payment by Google plus the establishment of a new licensing system.



28
Oct/08

"Belgian ISP Wins Reprieve In Copyright Infringement Filtering Case"


Out-Law.com: “Belgian ISP Wins Reprieve in Copyright Infringement Filtering Case“:

A Belgian internet service provider that had been ordered by the courts to filter out copyright-infringing material from its network has won a court reprieve. It will not have to pay the €750,000 in fines that have built up over the past year.



28
Oct/08

"Of Copyright & Family Feuds: "Hedge Fund Wives" Goes To Court


WSJ.Com: “Of Copyright & Family Feuds: “Hedge Fund Wives” Goes to Court“:

Tatiana alleges that Natasha surreptitiously copied portions of the book during trips to Tatiana’s New York home. Tatiana also claims that Natasha filed for a joint copyright by allegedly providing the Copyright Office with a version of the book that she’d downloaded from Tatiana’s computer. Then, earlier this month, Natasha allegedly referred to “Hedge Fund Wives” as “our book.” After that she began sending letters to HarperCollins people allegedly threatening to publish the book on the Web if they didn’t respond.