Steve Baird

Steve Baird

Winthrop & Weinstine, P.A.

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Big Green Egg on Hunt for TM Registration

As it turns out, four days after Easter, the USPTO refused registration of the Big Green Egg’s claimed exclusive rights in the shape and color of its popular barbecue smoker and grill... ...more

4/22/2015 - Trademark Registration Trademarks USPTO

Bringing Down the Bauhaus for Trademarks?

We’ve been spilling a lot of digital ink lately on the topic of non-traditional trademark protection and how the functionality doctrine serves as an absolute bar for such protection. As you know, for some time, we’ve...more

4/7/2015 - Advertising Functionality Trademarks USPTO

Easy as 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 — and Functional Too?

Welcome to another edition of newly filed configuration trademark applications at the USPTO, here is the latest; it is quite a specimen: The question for the day though is whether the claimed mark actually functions...more

3/9/2015 - Trademarks USPTO

Lights Shining On Configuration Trademarks?

As our loyal readers know, we love bringing non-traditional trademarks within your sights for consideration, even if they’re hanging from the ceiling, so here’s another to explore...more

2/4/2015 - Trademarks USPTO

Would You Feel Friendly Toward Freddy?

As the brand manager or trademark counsel for Friendly’s, would you be friendly toward Freddy’s? I remember the Friendly’s restaurant chain when we lived in Columbia, Maryland, back in the days when I clerked for a...more

1/29/2015 - Likelihood of Confusion Restaurant Industry Trade Dress Trademarks USPTO

As the Trademark Fraud Pendulum Swings

Once upon a time, and for decades thereafter, trademark fraud claims were highly disfavored. They were criticized as unproductive litigation diversions — “often pled,” but “rarely proven.”...more

1/12/2015 - Commercial Use Fraud Trademarks USPTO

A December for Configuration Trademarks?

Every now and then it’s worth checking in at the USPTO to see what’s cooking in the world of non-traditional product configuration trademarks: As it turns out, the Big Green Egg is seeking to be more than a word mark —...more

12/29/2014 - Popular Product Configuration Trademarks USPTO

Amy, Whatcha Wanna Do (About this TM)?

As we start to think about welcoming in the weekend, why don’t we all hum this Pure Prairie League tune, while viewing this image and reading this very brief blog post...more

10/20/2014 - Trademark Litigation Trademarks USPTO

Bottega Veneta Unties a Trademark Knot

It is easy for some to get all tied up in knots at the USPTO when facing challenging grounds for refusal against federal registration of a claimed non-traditional trademark. Not Bottega Veneta....more

10/13/2014 - Bottega Veneta Fashion Branding Fashion Industry Popular Trademarks USPTO

Will Chick-fil-A, uh Chicken Out?

Just so you know, this is not the post I planned to write today. Hat tip to you, Bo! It has been exactly one year since Bo Muller-Moore — the “Eat More Kale” guy from Vermont — submitted a comprehensive 71-page...more

9/9/2014 - Chick-Fil-A Trademarks USPTO

I’m Gumby Dammit — A Flexible Trademark?

The Minnesota History Center is currently promoting its Toys of the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s exhibit — my favorite promotional billboard is the one captured above, featuring none other than Gumby....more

8/18/2014 - Trademark Trial and Appeal Board Trademarks USPTO

SHARKNADO Trademark: Toothless Wonder?

In case you missed SHARKNADO last year, fear not, the sequel SHARKNADO 2 — The Second One, is taking the country by storm, and it is reportedly even better than the first SHARKNADO film. Not having seen either, I’m not sure...more

8/1/2014 - Entertainment Industry Merchandising Rights Movies Sharknado Trademarks USPTO

Harley-Davidson Booze Coming Soon?

With the 74th Anniversary of the famous Sturgis Motorcycle Rally less than a week away, it seemed like a good time to check in on recent Harley-Davidson trademark activity at the USPTO....more

7/28/2014 - Brand Harley-Davidson Popular USPTO

Dethroning a Right to Register a Trademark?

Last month, you will recall we wrote about the important difference between the right to register a trademark and the right to use a trademark...more

7/15/2014 - Infringement Likelihood of Confusion Registration Trademarks USPTO

Description of a Trademark with the USPTO

Continuing our discussion — from yesterday and the day before – about the description of a mark provided to the USPTO during the registration process, the below images from two unrelated federally-registered, non-verbal logos...more

7/11/2014 - Trademarks USPTO Written Descriptions

Pepsi Gets Grip on MLB All-Star Extravaganza

How cool is it to have the MLB All-Star Game and related events, right here in Minneapolis? Very. As the advertisement shows, Pepsi is playing a large role in the event, as the “Official Soft Drink” of the MLB All-Star...more

7/10/2014 - Advertising MLB PepsiCo Popular Trademarks USPTO

IP Solicitation Scams on the Rise

In recent months, an increasing number of companies have reported receiving official-looking intellectual property notices and solicitations. These fraudulent solicitations may take the form of invoices, renewal notices, or...more

7/1/2014 - Copyright Fraudulent Inducement Patents Popular Solicitation Trademarks USPTO

Trademark Disparagement Kills the R-Word

My father-daughter time was wonderful in London when the news hit about the USPTO ordering cancellation of the six ”Washington Redskins” trademarks as disparaging to Native Americans....more

6/20/2014 - Blackhorse v Pro-Football Disparagement Football Laches Native American Issues NFL Redskins Registration Trademark Act Trademark Trial and Appeal Board Trademarks USPTO

Rubber Hits the Road: Rust-Oleum Trademark Case Leaves TTAB for Minnesota Federal Court

Lately we’ve been discussing more and more the difference between the right to register a trademark and the right to use a trademark. In many trademark disputes the perfect forum for an amicable resolution is the Trademark...more

6/10/2014 - Trademark Litigation Trademark Trial and Appeal Board Trademarks USPTO

Gia Nother Wine Bottle Trademark

Combing through the USPTO’s recently approved non-verbal trademark registrations revealed this little gem with Francis Ford Coppola’s name on the label (but not claimed as part of the mark)...more

6/9/2014 - Coppola Infringement Trademarks USPTO Wine & Alcohol

What’s In Your Wallet, a Cafe?

Since 2000, Capital One Financial — the nation’s largest direct bank – has been promoting its credit card services by asking What’s in Your Wallet? Three years later it began promoting banking and other financial services...more

5/19/2014 - Banks Brand Capital One Financial Products Marketing Trademarks USPTO

Eat More Walleye?

It’s that time of year again, the Minnesota fishing opener is upon us this weekend, so Rapala is sporting its new billboard in the Twin Cities metro area, as shown below...more

5/5/2014 - Advertising Fishing Industry Marketing Trademarks USPTO

Pretzel Crisps Genericness Decision Appealed

A couple of months ago you will recall that the USPTO’s Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) held ”Pretzel Crisps” generic for pretzel crackers... ...It appears the TTAB’s decision will not be the final word on the...more

4/28/2014 - Generic Trademark Trial and Appeal Board USPTO

Calling Non-Traditional Trademarks By Name

Things that are worth talking about need names. Good, distinctive names are best. As you may recall, last year we wrote this about non-verbal logos needing names...more

4/14/2014 - Automotive Industry Toyota Trademarks USPTO

Ola Crapola!

Crapola sounds like something worth saying on the way to Chicago, after discovering the size of your PowerPoint file is too large to get through the recipient’s firewall, and then realizing the USB flash drive containing your...more

4/7/2014 - Brand Generic USPTO

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