Communications & Media Civil Procedure

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Judicial Internet Research: Does the First SCOTUS Decision of OT 2015 Bode Ill for Dr. Posner?

Regular readers of our blog likely are familiar with the Seventh Circuit’s recent decision in Rowe v. Gibson, No. 14-3316 (Aug. 19, 2015), and the considerable controversy that Judge Richard Posner created regarding the...more

Social Media Brings the Right of Publicity to the Masses

Do you consider yourself famous? If the answer is no, then you have likely never been concerned with the invasion of your right of publicity. The right of publicity is the right of a person in his or her identity—name or...more

Earning Trademarks with Every Coupon? How Johnson & Johnson Secured The Mark: Earning Trust With Every Bottle

A recent ruling from the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (“the Board”) found a coupon to be an acceptable specimen for the U.S. Trademark Office (“Office”) showing proper trademark use. Johnson & Johnson submitted the coupon...more

"European Court of Justice Rules on Retroactive Loyalty Rebates"

On October 6, 2015, the European Court of Justice (the ECJ) issued an important judgment clarifying the application of Article 102 to retroactive loyalty rebates (Post Danmark AS, Case C 23/14). The case, which had been...more

Three Steps to Help Ensure the Enforceability of Your Website’s Terms of Use

Operators of social media platforms and other websites typically manage their risks by imposing terms of use or terms of service for the sites. As we previously wrote, websites must implement such terms properly to ensure...more

Discovery Rules Continue to Evolve for Cases Involving Social Media

Your social media content is not only susceptible to hacking; it’s also susceptible to disclosure requests from civil litigants (see our Sept. 14 blog post for more details) and even prosecutors without your consent if they...more

The FDA Tiptoes – and Congress Splashes Into – the 21st Century

Here are a couple of non-litigation related matters that we thought our readers need to know about. First, the FDA. We’ve pointed out before that the FDA’s “intended use” regulations for drugs (21 C.F.R. §201.128) and...more

ASRC Announces Changes to NAD and NARB Procedures Following Working Group Recommendations

The Advertising Self-Regulatory Council board has announced changes to the adjudicatory processes of the National Advertising Division and the National Advertising Review Board. The changes, announced at the NAD's annual...more

The Ninth Circuit Declares That Individualized Damages Issues Alone Never, Ever Preclude Certification of a Rule 23(b)(3) Class

In Pulaski & Middleman, LLC v. Google, Inc., No. 12-16752, 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 16723 (9th Cir. Sept. 21, 2015), a Ninth Circuit panel held that individualized damages (or restitution) calculations cannot alone defeat Rule...more

Advertising Law - September 2015 #3

State AGs Settle Negative Option Marketing Case for $1M: Negative option marketing cost one company $1 million in a recent deal with the Attorneys General of New York, Pennsylvania and Washington. According to the...more

Ninth Circuit Holds District Court Erred In Denying Certification To Class Of Google Advertisers

A Ninth Circuit panel reversed a district court’s order denying certification of a putative nationwide class of internet advertisers, holding that the district court erred in finding that plaintiff failed to satisfy Rule...more

Trademark Review | September 2015

The TTAB Finds Confusion Between WINEBUD Wine and BUD Beer The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) found that Applicant’s mark WINEBUD for wine is confusingly similar to Anheuser-Busch’s (“AB”) BUD mark. The TTAB...more

Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act: More Lessons to Be Learned

Courts continue to struggle with the application of CDA immunity to shield service provider defendants from liability in extreme cases. In this case, the Washington Supreme Court, in a 6-3 decision, affirmed the lower court’s...more

Status Updates: Court nixes VPPA claim; lawyer suspended over blog posts; Facebook ‘unfriending’ cited in bullying decision

Tale of the tape. The Video Privacy Protection Act (VPPA), which requires video service providers to destroy personally identifiable information after a specified time, doesn’t provide a private right of action for plaintiffs...more

Summary of Recent Precedential Trademark Trial and Appeal Board Decisions

From June through August 2015, the Trademark Trial & Appeal Board issued eleven precedential decisions. Over the course of the upcoming weeks, we are briefly summarizing each opinion and a “take away” for brand owners and...more

Ruling Allows Gerber False Advertising Suit to Crawl Onward

For plaintiffs concerned that the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals’ June 19, 2015 decision in Brown v. GNC Corp. signaled the muscling in of a stricter new pleading standard for false advertising class actions nationwide, a...more

Financial Projections, Strategic Plans, And Customer Contract Proposals Can Be Trade Secrets

Two competitors who do research and analysis for advertisers and media companies, concerning how television viewing impacts consumer purchasing, have been in a legal battle over alleged trade secret misappropriation, patent...more

Intellectual Property Newsletter - September/October 2015

PTAB Update on Inter Partes Review - On August 19, 2015, the Director of the USPTO released a blog post reporting on the state of post-grant review proceedings created by the Leahy-Smith America Invents Act of 2011 and...more

Are You Sure This Isn’t About Copyright? Chicken Sandwiches, Monkey Selfies and the Boundaries of Copyright Law

Last week, a wild crested macaque named Naruto (but really People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against photographer David John Slater in the Northern District of California. The...more

The Case of Prince, a Dancing Baby and the DMCA Takedown Notice

In 2007, Stephanie Lenz posted a 29-second video to YouTube of her baby dancing in the kitchen with Prince’s “Let’s Go Crazy” playing in the background. Claiming use of their song amounted to copyright infringement, Universal...more

Advertising Law - September 2015 #2

FTC Reviews Kids’ Apps for Privacy Progress - Three years after conducting a survey on apps directed to children, the Federal Trade Commission’s Office of Technology Research and Investigation decided to check back with...more

Lenz v Universal Music Corp - USCA, Ninth Circuit, September 14, 2015

In Depth - Appellee Stephanie Lenz uploaded to YouTube a 29-second home video of her two children in the family kitchen dancing to Prince’s song “Let’s Go Crazy” in 2007. Based on certain video evaluation guidelines,...more

Chocolate Bear Beats Gummy Bear

Can a wordmark with a particular meaning be infringed by a three-dimensional product design? Disputes regarding the infringement of a wordmark by a purely figurative mark (and vice versa) have been the object of several...more

Litigation Alert: Lenz v. Universal Music Group – Baby Keeps on Dancin'

The Ninth Circuit has finally weighed in on the long-running saga of the “dancing baby” video case (the “baby” in the video is now a 9-year old), and its opinion could have long-lasting effects on fair use and how copyright...more

Federal District Court Articulates Criteria for Effective Presentation of Electronic Contracts

In Berkson v. Gogo LLC, 2015 WL 1600755 (E.D. NY 2015), the Eastern District of New York denied a motion to dismiss and compel arbitration filed by an in-flight wifi provider. The provider was accused in a class action suit...more

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