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No Damages for Plaintiff Since Dry Cleaner Agreed to Hang Up Trademark Use

The US Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit affirmed a permanent injunction enjoining a dry cleaner franchisee from using plaintiff’s trademarks but explained that plaintiff was not entitled to punitive damages, costs or...more

Without Volitional Conduct, Establishing Direct Copyright Infringement Gets Hairy

The US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed the district court’s grant of summary judgment, holding that “volitional conduct” is required to establish a claim for direct copyright infringement under the safe harbor...more

University Trademark Licensing Denial Goes up in Smoke

The US Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit affirmed the district court’s decision that a university licensing authority violated the First Amendment when refusing to approve use of the university’s trademarks on t-shirts...more

Usenet Server Owners, Operators Are Not Directly or Secondarily Liable for Copyright Infringement

Addressing copyright infringement issues, the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit affirmed the district court’s summary judgment in defendants’ favor on direct, vicarious and contributory infringement claims. Perfect...more

Less Utility Than Alternatives Does Not Make Product’s Trade Dress Protectable

The US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit affirmed a district court grant of summary judgment in favor of a defendant finding that a bag’s design and shape was functional because the claimed design features affect the...more

Sixth Circuit Drops the Beat: Social Media Relevant in Determining Likelihood of Confusion

The US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit affirmed a grant of summary judgment, holding that the plaintiff provided insufficient evidence to find that relevant consumers were likely to confuse the sources of his and the...more

Surrender Dorothy: Court Upholds Damages, Injunction for Movie Content Infringement

The US Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit affirmed a summary judgment and permanent injunction prohibiting the defendant from licensing images from movies owned by the plaintiff. Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc., et al....more

Not All Repeat Infringer Policies Are Sufficient for Safe Harbor Protection

The US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit vacated a grant of summary judgment that a defendant had a reasonably implemented repeat infringer policy and therefore qualified for safe harbor protection under the Digital...more

Federal Copyright Law Does Not Preempt Trade Secret Claim

Addressing issues of preemption, the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit affirmed the district court’s decision that federal copyright law did not preempt the plaintiff’s trade secret claim because trade secret claims...more

Music Played by Karaoke Machine Is Not “Tangible Good” for Purpose of Trademark Infringement **WEB ONLY**

Addressing the “tangible good” requirement of trademark infringement, the US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit upheld the district court’s decision to dismiss a case because defendants’ playing of unauthorized copies...more

“Crazy Horse” Is Still Going Crazy in Las Vegas

The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upheld the district court’s decision that the plaintiff was the assignee of a valid trademark co-existence agreement entered into with the former owner of the registered mark...more

DMCA Safe Harbor Protection Includes Pre-1972 Recordings

Vacating a district court’s decision, the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit explained that the safe harbor provision of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) protects material posted on websites of online hosts...more

Acquiescence Defense – Don’t Try to Use It Too Early

The US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit reversed and remanded a district court decision, finding that the defendant’s attempt to have a trademark infringement lawsuit dismissed at the pleading stage based on an...more

Financial Gain Not Required to Prevail in Trade Secret Theft Claim - United States of America v. Yihao Pu

The US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit vacated a district court decision awarding substantial restitution for trade secret theft, determining that a loss calculation made by the district court was erroneous and that...more

NFL Players’ Right of Publicity Claims Denied - J. F. Dryer et al. v. The National Football League

The US Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit affirmed a district court summary judgment in favor of defendants, denying plaintiffs’ publicity rights claims in footage and interviews made by the defendants and finding that...more

Rosa Parks Name and Likeness Free for Use? (Rosa and Raymond Parks Institute for Self Development v. Target Corp.)

Addressing the balance between privacy rights and matters of public interest, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit affirmed the district court’s dismissal of the plaintiff’s complaint, holding that the defendant...more

Single Claim Approach for Trade Secret Misappropriation - Allied Erecting & Dismantling Co. v. Genesis Equip. & Mfg.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit affirmed the district court decision holding that a plaintiff is precluded from filing a claim based on alleged ongoing misbehavior when an allegation of trade secrets...more

District Court Twice “Erred with Respect to Every [Confusion] Factor.”

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit reversed a district court decision for the second time, explaining that on remand the district court “erred with respect to every factor” in determining whether confusion was...more

Unflattering Photo—A Blogger’s Paradise? - Raanan Katz v. Irina Chevaldina

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit affirmed the district court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of defendant based on an assertion of fair use of an unflattering, candid headshot photograph of plaintiff....more

Motion to Quash Service Is Not a Collateral Order and Therefore Not Appealable - United States v. Sinovel Wind Grp. Co.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit concluded that the district court’s denial of defendant Sinovel’s motion to quash service of process is not an appealable order under the collateral order doctrine. The Court...more

Sublicensee’s Purchase of Licensee Not Prohibited under the License Agreement - VDF FutureCeuticals, Inc. v. Stiefel Labs., Inc.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit ruled that a sublicensee of patent and trademark rights that purchased its sublicensor in order to reduce the royalties it owned to the licensor was not prohibited from buying...more

Could the Bieb Be a Copyright Infringer? - Copeland et al. v. Bieber et al.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit vacated a district court decision dismissing a copyright infringement claim in a case involving a copyrighted song and a later recording by Justin Bieber concluding that that...more

Music Streaming Rights Are Included in ASCAP’s Licenses - American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers et al. v. Pandora...

The U. S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed a district court ruling that composers and music publishers cannot partially withdraw from the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) licensing...more

NOPALEA Mark Merely Descriptive of a Product Derived from Nopalea Cactus - In Re TriVita, Inc.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit affirmed the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board’s (TTAB’s) decision that the trademark NOPALEA was descriptive of TriVita’s products, which contain juice from the nopal cactus....more

Dilution Claim Dismissed Based on Unreasonably Delay - Ava Ruha Corp. v. Mother’s Nutritional Center, Inc.

In a precedential cancellation action, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s (USPTO) Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB or Board) held that petitioner’s three-year, two-month delay in petitioning to cancel the...more

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