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Trademark Red Tape: Comeuppance For Trademark Con-Artists

January 2017 - Happy holidays and welcome to the 2017 New Year edition of Trademark Red Tape, our periodic round-up of trademark news and happenings at the United States Patent & Trademark Office. Here are the...more

A Tale Of Two Hats: Trademark “Use In Commerce” Expanded In A Potentially Game-Changing Decision

Our readers no doubt understand that trademark use is the basis for trademark protection in the U.S. But all use is not created equal, and sometimes it’s not so easy to tell whether a trademark is actually used in a manner...more

Trademark Red Tape: Post-Registration Proof Pilot To Go Permanent

USPTO Red TapeRegular readers of the Trademark and Copyright Law Blog and our Trademark Red Tape™ column may recall our previous report on a pilot study by the United States Patent & Trademark Office (PTO) about...more

Trademark Red Tape: Incoming Fee Increases And Sweeping TTAB Rule Changes

Disparaging Marks Still Held in Abeyance. As an update to our last Trademark Red Tape, the USPTO, which has now filed a petition for a writ of certiorari to the Supreme Court in In re Tam with respect to the...more

Trademark Red Tape: Disparaging Marks And TTAB Tidbits

Welcome to Trademark Red Tape, our periodic round-up of trademark news and happenings at the United States Patent & Trademark Office. Here are the highlights: - A Time-Out for Offensive Trademarks. According to IP...more

Domain Name Strategies for Start-Up Companies

Just as it is important for start-up companies to be mindful of early-stage trademark and copyright protection strategies (see our guides entitled “Trademark Strategies for Start-Up Companies” and “Copyright Strategies for...more

USPTO Pilot Program Offers Relief to Proprietors of “Evolving” Goods and Services

Imagine, for a moment, a successful software company, Agave, that owns the trademark PHOTOCHOPS for a popular image-editing program. Being a diligent trademark owner, Agave registered the trademark PHOTOCHOPS in 2005, right...more

INTA.sucks: Brand Prophylaxis or Trademark “Protection” Racket?

I’m back from the International Trademark Association (INTA) Annual Meeting in beautiful (if a bit cloudy and windy) San Diego, which featured the usual array of client meetings, networking with counsel from around the world,...more

.PORN and .ADULT Join .XXX to Form Unsexy Threesome for Brand Owners

Yesterday marked the sunrise launch of the .porn and .adult generic top-level domains (gTLDs), which join .xxx in the top-level domain name space as gTLDs targeted mainly at online purveyors of adult entertainment. ...more

UDRP Panel Tells Snapchat to Check Itself Regarding Snapchatcheck.com

By now you’ve probably heard of Snapchat. But if you are not among its growing core base of users between 13 and 23 years of age (probably a good deal younger than you, constant reader) there’s a good chance you are not a...more

The Haunted History of the Hallowine Trademark

Brewers, distillers, and vintners are no strangers to themed seasonal offerings, so it’s not surprising that Halloween brings out some decidedly decrepit monikers. From PUMPKINHEAD (think reaping) to NOSFERATU, WITCH’S WIT...more

The PTO vs. The Phantom Marks: A Ghost Story

Don’t read this one before bed. As autumn sets in and Halloween approaches, my mind turns to jack-o-lanterns, skeletons, and phantoms. Phantom marks, that is. Equally incorporeal though perhaps somewhat less...more

The Trademark “Chaff” Quandary: PTO Report On Post-Registration Proof of Use

As any IP lawyer will readily admit, trademark practice before the United States Patent & Trademark Office (PTO) comes with its fair share of annoyances: inconsistent treatment of similar applications, unreasonably stringent...more

Amazon’s Inability To Register Domain Name .Amazon Is An Interesting Case Study For New gTLDs

Do you want your company to control .app or .restaurant? Applying to operate a generic top-level domain (gTLD) isn’t for the faint of heart. Although several hundred companies ponied up the $185,000 application fee for over...more

An INTA Hong Kong Debrief

After a week at the International Trademark Association Annual (INTA) Annual Meeting in Hong Kong, and another spent exploring the city and its surrounds, it’s nice to be heading back to the comparatively quaint major city we...more

5 Steps To Protect Your Brands in the New gTLD Regime

The time is upon us. After years of anticipation, lobbying for delays and more robust trademark protections, and otherwise steeling themselves against the oncoming tide of new, generic top-level domain names (gTLDs), brand...more

New Trademark Law in China Promises Efficiency and Enhanced Enforcement Capabilities for U.S. Brand Owners

The People’s Republic of China is considered by some to be the next great economic superpower, and U.S. companies seeking to gain a foothold in the Chinese marketplace often begin by attempting to secure trademark rights in...more

Protect Your Brands in the New Domain Name Regime: The Trademark Clearinghouse Is Open for Business

New generic top-level domain names (gTLDs) such as .fun, .law, and .money have been in the works for a very long time, and the first batch may be just around the corner. ICANN recently published a “hypothetical” timeline...more

Mind Your Xs and Zs: Are These Letters Too Common in Pharmaceutical Trademarks?

An interesting debate recently occurred in the New England Journal of Medicine between a physician and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regarding whether the letters X and Z are used too frequently in...more

Domain Name Update: Trademark Clearinghouse to Launch in March

As we have discussed at length, over the next couple of years several hundred new generic top-level domain names (gTLDs) such as .family, .home, and .toys are expected to be introduced into the domain name system. The...more

Ron Paul Seeks To Liberate RonPaul.com….From the Hands of Ron Paul Supporters?

Former U.S. Congressman and presidential candidate Ron Paul, polarizing political figure and active member of the Libertarian Party, is no stranger to conflict, or taking full advantage of intellectual property rights to...more

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