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Communications & Media Updates

Read need-to-know updates, commentary, and analysis on Communications & Media issues written by leading professionals.

4 Common Reasons for a Trademark Registration Refusal

by Revision Legal on

When someone applies for a federal trademark registration with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), it is possible for the trademark registration application to be refused. While this is often disappointing,...more

The Covfefe Kerfuffle and the Rush to Register Trending Terms

While many of us are working our way through the flood of thought-provoking analysis of Matal v. Tam, I’m taking a break with some lighter fare, namely, covfefe. In case you missed it, the viral non-word “covfefe” was born...more

Try Not to be so Friendly: Current Issues in Interviews and Advertising

by Davis Brown Law Firm on

Many of us like to chat. We like to know what you’re reading, how your kid’s baseball season is going, and what kind of pie you like, but while hostesses love you at a cocktail party, chatting can lead to trouble, especially...more

The Case Goes On, For Now: Seventh Circuit Holds Rule 67 Cannot Moot TCPA Class Action

by Benesch on

In January 2016, the Supreme Court issued its Campbell-Ewald v. Gomez decision and definitely ruled that Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 68 could not be used to moot the claims of a named plaintiff. Prior to that ruling,...more

FINRA Permits Related Performance Information in Institutional Communications for Registered Closed-End Funds

Introduction In an interpretive guidance letter issued to a registered closed-end fund on June 9, 2017, FINRA permitted the use of “related performance information” in communications that are distributed solely to...more

Supreme Court Tightens Personal Jurisdiction Requirements

by Benesch on

Determining whether a nonresident defendant is subject to a forum state’s jurisdiction became clearer on June 19, 2017, when the United States Supreme Court announced its decision in Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. v. Superior Court...more

DSM Watch: EU online content services Portability Regulation will become law in its current form: Council adoption 8 June 2017

by Hogan Lovells on

DSM Watch has been tracking this, the first legislative proposal published by the Commission under the Digital Single Market strategy banner, since back in December 2015.  The Commission’s aim was to allow consumers who pay...more

EU Telecoms Regulation Based on Unilateral Market Power Would be Contrary to EU Law

The existing EU regulatory framework for electronic communications obliges the EU Member States to provide in their national laws for certain powers and responsibilities of national regulatory authorities (“NRA”), in...more

Sharing Economy: European Parliament call for EU level guidance on employment and social security questions

by Hogan Lovells on

To regulate or not to regulate: This question becomes relevant for the sharing economy after last week’s European Parliament resolution calling for clear EU guidelines on the collaborative economy. The resolution is a...more

Instagram Announces a New Tool for Influencers

by Kelley Drye & Warren LLP on

Last year, we posted that four consumer groups had sent letters to FTC, encouraging the agency to “investigate and bring enforcement actions related to the practice of non-disclosed advertising through influencer user...more

EU Retail News - June 2017

by Bryan Cave on

2017 is shaping up to be the year that the UK's Committee of Advertising Practice ("CAP") puts its foot down on how companies can advertise to children online. In recent months, CAP has published a multitude of guidance to...more

Matal v. Tam: Trademark Disparagement Clause Held Unconstitutional

by Shearman & Sterling LLP on

Yesterday, the Supreme Court held in an 8–0 decision that the disparagement clause in the Trademark statute—which prohibits the registration of trademarks that may “disparage . . . or bring . . . into contemp[t] or disrepute”...more

A Good Day for Free Speech Advocates: Supreme Court Holds Unconstitutional Federal Trademark Law’s Anti-Disparagement Provision

by Snell & Wilmer on

In Matal v. Tam, the United States Supreme Court held unconstitutional, under the First Amendment, the “disparagement clause” of 15 U.S.C. § 1052(a), which permits denial of a trademark registration application by the United...more

Eleventh Circuit Does Not Skim Over First Amendment Concerns in Labeling Milk

Be careful not to skim over potential First Amendment challenges to commercial speech regulations in labeling cases. By ‘whey’ of example, the Eleventh Circuit recently found that the actions of the Florida Commissioner of...more

Supreme Court Strikes Down Statute Banning Disparaging Trademarks

On June 19, 2017, the Supreme Court in Matal v. Tam unanimously held that a portion of 15 U.S.C. § 1052(a), the Lanham Act provision that prohibits the registration of trademarks that may “disparage . . . persons, living or...more

Preserving California’s Tied-House Rules - Ninth Circuit en banc decision upholds decades-old law restricting alcohol beverage...

On June 14, 2017, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, sitting en banc, issued its decision in Retail Digital Network LLC v. Ramona Prieto, Case No. 13-56069, D.C. No 2:11-cv-09065-CBM-PJW. The decision rejects a...more

Six years after Penn State, has college athletics really reformed its crisis response?

by Thompson Coburn LLP on

In 2011, the world of higher education — and the entire nation — was rocked by the shocking revelation of the criminal actions of longtime Penn State defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky. Equally shocking was the reaction...more

Supreme Court Fells North Carolina Statute on First Amendment Grounds, Recognizes Cyberspace and Social Media As the Most...

by Jackson Walker on

Yesterday’s unanimous ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court in Packingham v. North Carolina is one of the first decisions in which the Court has addressed broadly the relationship between the First Amendment and social media,...more

“Junk Fax” Case Determined Not To Make Junk Law, Strengthens Post-Spokeo Standing and Rule 67 Mootness Arguments

by Dorsey & Whitney LLP on

In a world pushed forward by new technology, it’s a “junk fax” case that advances two case dispositive TCPA defense bar arguments: (1) a plaintiff lacks Article III standing post-Spokeo unless there is a sufficient...more

Court Determines That Grocer's Website Not Used to Sell Goods Is Public Accommodation Under the ADA

by WilmerHale on

Last week, following a bench trial, a federal district judge in Florida concluded that the grocery store and pharmacy chain Winn-Dixie violated Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) because its website is not...more

Your trademarks now can (but needn’t) be offensive

by Thompson Coburn LLP on

If you want to — though we don’t encourage it — you can now disparage ethnic groups in your federally registered trademarks. Indeed, the Supreme Court has unanimously given you a constitutional right to select, and obtain...more

In Landmark Decision, the Supreme Court Strikes Down Key Provision of the Lanham Act that Prohibits Registration of Disparaging...

by Payne & Fears on

On Monday, June 19, 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court in Matal v. Tam, 582 U.S._ (2017), unanimously struck down the disparagement clause of the Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C.A. § 1052(a), on grounds that it violates the Free Speech Clause...more

Amazon & Wal-Mart: Pinky and The Brain of Retail

by Goulston & Storrs PC on

In the opening montage of the American animated series, Pinky and The Brain, Pinky asks his best friend, The Brain: “What do you want to do tonight?” To which The Brain replies: “The same thing we do every night; try to take...more

THE SLANTS Decision Affects More than a 2(a) and an (R)

In Monday’s decision in the newly minted, Matal v. Tam case, the Supreme Court affirmed the Federal Circuit decision that the Trademark Office’s refusal to register THE SLANTS mark on disparagement grounds was...more

Social Media and Student Discipline – Where Are We?

The United States Supreme Court stated nearly 50 years ago that public school students do not shed their rights to free speech at the schoolhouse gate. In Tinker v. Des Moines Indep. Cmty. Sch. Dist., the Court struck down...more

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