22
Oct/10

Famous Horse v 5th Avenue: False "Satisfied Customer" Claims


Plaintiff is a retailer. Defendant attempts to sell it counterfeit product, which plaintiff refuses. Defendant says to third-party retailers: “Plaintiff is a satisfied customer.” Plaintiff brings 32 and 43(a) causes. District court dismisses at 12(b)(6) level, indicating that the unauthorized use of plaintiff’s mark doesn’t lead to confusion as to source of products. Second Circuit reverses, noting that the false advertising prong is much broader, applying to any false statement containing an unauthorized use of a mark, which statement may harm plaintiff (and notes that it has recognized ‘satisfied customer’ cases as recently as 2003. Important discussion of the scope of false advertising and of standing.

Decision Famous Horse v 5th

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