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Catching-Up On House Judiciary Committee’s Revised Innovation Act

Recently the House Judiciary Committee voted 24-8 to approve a revised version of the Innovation Act. As we previously discussed, the Innovation Act was re-introduced in the House earlier this year in the same form approved...more

Federal Judge Permits MPHJ’s Suit Challenging Vermont’s Bad Faith Patent Demand Letter Law To Proceed

We previously discussed the Vermont attorney general’s enforcement action against MPHJ Technology Investments, LLC, a non-practicing entity that has recently been the subject of regulatory scrutiny. The attorney general’s...more

In re Tam – Federal Circuit Orders En Banc Review of Trademark Act’s Ban Against Registration of Disparaging Marks

The Slants is a Portland-based band composed of musicians of Asian-American descent who characterize their genre as “Chinatown Dance Rock.” The band’s bassist, Simon Tam, filed a trademark application for THE SLANTS for...more

Michael Jordan Defends His Right to Remain in Court to Protect His Likeness

On March 19, 2015, Wilson Elser published “Michael Jordan Denied Summary Judgment on His Right of Publicity Claim against Illinois Grocer,” an Alert concerning a case in which Michael Jordan was denied summary judgment on his...more

No Bond for You: Patentee Not Entitled to Bond or Preliminary Injunction While Case Stayed Pending IPR

Order Granting Motion to Stay, Security People, Inc. v. Ojmar US, LLC, 14-cv-04968 (Judge Haywood Gilliam Jr.) - A recent opinion analyzes what relief, if any, a patentee is entitled to when its District Court case is...more

Federal Circuit Finds Nunc Pro Tunc Agreement Does Not Confer Standing

The tenuous nature of an exclusive licensee’s standing to enforce a patent was something I learned early in my legal career, when I was a judicial clerk at the Federal Circuit. In Alps South LLC v. Ohio Willow Wood Co., the...more

Patent Licensee’s Standing to Sue for Infringement

Although you might not think so, given the proliferation of litigation, courts are actually very particular about who can bring a lawsuit. In order for a plaintiff to file a lawsuit, it must have ’standing’ or put another...more

“Desert Warrior” Vanquished: Google Defeats Cindy Lee Garcia’s Copyright Claims

Cindy Lee Garcia thought she was playing a bit part in “Desert Warrior,” an adventure film being made by an amateur film maker. The film was never completed. Instead, Ms. Garcia’s performance was re-purposed, and her physical...more

Lawyer Who Started Fight Over "R-Word" Mascot Awaits Decision

About a quarter century ago, Steve Baird — at the time, a freshly minted graduate of the University of Iowa law school clerking for a federal judge in Washington, D.C. — was spending most of his free weekends working on an...more

Fourth Circuit Finds that First Amendment Trumps Trademarks

The Fourth Circuit recently ruled that a Defendant’s online article entitled “NAACP: National Association for the Abortion of Colored People” did not violate the trademark rights of the NAACP, the National Association for the...more

Trademark Review | May 2015

Attorneys’ Fees Might be More Readily Granted in Trademark Cases - Last year, the U.S. Supreme Court relaxed the standard for awarding attorneys’ fees to the prevailing party in patent infringement cases. Octane...more

The First Amendment Trumps Trademark Rights in Radiance Found, Inc. v. NAACP

When a pro-life columnist publicized a biting article criticizing the NAACP’s stance on abortion rights, the NAACP retaliated with a cease and desist letter accusing the columnist of trademark infringement. When the dust...more

Fatwas & the First Amendment: 9th Circuit Reverses Takedown Order of Video that Preceded Benghazi & Cairo Protests

A young actress agreed to appear in a low-budget, Middle Eastern themed action film. The producer re-cut and over-dubbed the video, which included five seconds of the actress’ performance, fashioning it into “Innocence of...more

Full Ninth Circuit Nixes Controversial Copyright Decision

On Monday, May 18, 2015, the Ninth Circuit, sitting en banc, overturned a highly-controversial opinion in Garcia v. Google, Inc., in which a three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit reversed the trial court and held that an...more

Another One Bites the Dust: Action Dismissed for Lack of Standing Where Plaintiff Could Not Prove Ownership of the Patent-In-Suit

America's Collectibles Network ("ACN") filed a patent infringement action in which it claimed to own U.S. Patent No. 8,370,211 (the "211 Patent"). It brought this action against the Genuine Gemstone Company ("Genuine...more

First Look at False Marking Under the AIA

In Sukumar v. Nautilus, Inc., the Federal Circuit took its first look at the standing requirements to bring a false marking case under the American Invents Act (AIA). The court rejected Nautilus’ arguments that only “market...more

Rights in Bob Marley's name and likeness trump free speech where defence not properly pleaded | World Trademark Review

Fifty-Six Hope Road is a company run by some of Bob Marley's children, and it owns the property rights to Bob Marley's name, voice and likeness. Hope Road licensed Zion Rootswear the exclusive right to use Marley's name and...more

Ninth Circuit Draws Fine Line Around Fine Art Resale Royalties

In a partial victory for artists such as Chuck Close and the Sam Francis Foundation—and for other visual artists who sold early works for rent money before establishing their name and value—the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals...more

An Easy First Impression: Joint Dismissal of Appellate Review - Versata Software, Inc. v. Callidus Software, Inc.

Addressing for the first time the propriety of vacating an appellate opinion when the underlying appeal is rendered moot before issuance of that opinion, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit determined that it...more

A Scandalous Mark to Some, Free Speech to Others: Federal Circuit to Decide Whether Controversial Limit on Trademark Registrations...

The Federal Circuit has decided to revisit the constitutionality of Section 2(a) of the Lanham Act in the case of In re Shiao Tam, 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 6840 (Fed. Cir. Apr. 27, 2015). Section 2(a) of the Lanham act allows the...more

Back to the ‘Useful Arts’ — Supreme Court Reins in the Expansive Interpretation of Patent Eligibility

Section 8 of the United States Constitution authorizes Congress to “promote the progress of science and the useful arts, by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive right to their respective writings...more

IP Newsflash - May 2015

FEDERAL CIRCUIT CASES - Subjective Term Not Indefinite when Intrinsic Record Provides Reasonably Certain Scope - On remand from the Supreme Court, on April 27, 2015, the Federal Circuit reassessed whether...more

Slanted Perspective?

What’s the first thing that comes to mind when I refer you to “the Slants?” Is it a non-perpendicular or horizontal line? Is it the news coverage of MSNBC or Fox News? Is it a derogatory term for Asians? Or, perhaps its...more

Otsuka Pharm. Co., Ltd. v. Mylan Inc.

Case Name: Otsuka Pharm. Co., Ltd. v. Mylan Inc., No. 14-4508 (JBS/KMW), 2015 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 35679 (D.N.J. Mar. 23, 2015) (Simandle, C.J.) . Drug Product and Patent(s)-in-Suit: Abilify® (aripiprazole); U.S. Patents...more

Second Circuit to Weigh In on Copyright Owner-Digital Broadcaster Dispute Over Pre-1972 Sound Recording Performance Rights

On April 15, 2015, the Second Circuit granted digital broadcaster Sirius XM Radio, Inc.'s (Sirius XM) petition for interlocutory appeal of U.S. District Judge Colleen McMahon's November 2014 ruling that New York state law...more

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