Intellectual Property Communications & Media

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Katy Perry Hits Roadblock in Obtaining Trademark Registration for Left Shark

Singer Katy Perry’s attempt to register the term “Left Shark”—the name of her dancing companion during the 2015 Super Bowl Halftime Show—with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) has been delayed, while her...more

That Google Image Search Could Result in Trouble

One aspect commonly associated with building and maintaining a business is the company website. Establishing an online presence can be an important tool for connecting with customers. While website creation can be a...more

MarkIt to MarketTM | June 2015

In This Issue: - Hashtag Trademarks: #ItsAllAboutTheUse - Upcoming Changes in Canadian Trade Mark Trademark Law - Changes in U.S Certification Mark Requirements - gTLD Sunrise Periods Now Open - The...more

Protecting Your Trademark from “.sucks” and “.porn”

Thousands of new generic top-level Internet domains (“gTLDs”) are opening up for registration. While many of these new gTLDs provide marketing opportunities for companies and other entities—for example, financial institutions...more

How to Properly Use Your Trademark -- Part II

Part I of this mini-blog series focused on how to ensure your trademark keeps its status as a source identifier for years and years to come. However, there is so much more to ensuring you are using your trademark to the best...more

Pre-1972 Recording Rulings – Not as Happy Together or as a Settlement

This week, after a string of wins, two members of the classic rock group the Turtles suffered a setback in their lawsuit against satellite radio provider, SiriusXM (Flo & Eddie Inc. v. Sirius XM Radio Inc.)....more

Entertainment and Media Litigation Update

Garcia v. Google: “Doubtful” Copyright Ownership Claim in Film Performance Does Not Outweigh First Amendment Right to Free Speech - Why it matters: In a closely watched case that tests the limits of copyright protection,...more

Securing a “.bank” Domain during the Upcoming Sunrise Period

The “.bank” top-level Internet domain will soon be available to verified financial institutions, offering specialized URLs and enhanced security features to members of the banking community that act quickly to secure their...more

Trademark Review | June 2015

Is PRETZEL CRISPS a Generic Term? Federal Circuit Resets Standard for Genericness - In an earlier precedential decision, the TTAB held there was a dichotomy in the standard for determining whether an applied-for mark...more

Federal Circuit: Lack of Bona Fide Intent to Use at the Time of Filing Fatal to Trademark Application

In a recent ruling the Federal Circuit affirmed the decision of the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) sustaining an opposition against a trademark application on the grounds that the applicant failed to prove that it...more

Protection of Identities Not Identical Under Lanham Act §§ 43(a) and 2(a)

In Tartell v. South Florida Sinus and Allergy Center, Inc., the Eleventh Circuit reversed the district court’s finding that the plaintiff’s personal name had acquired distinctiveness as a trademark and that the defendant...more

Strategies For Businesses Protecting Electronic Data Within California: Part Three

In Parts One and Two of this e-alert series, we discussed the federal Computer Fraud And Abuse Act ("CFAA") and its California corollary the California Computer Data Access And Fraud Act (CDAFA). In Part Three, we provide a...more

Is a “YourBrand.sucks” Domain Name Worth $2,500 per Year?

The sunrise period for "dot sucks," the new generic top level domain (gTLD), opened on March 30, 2015 and ends on June 19, 2015. During the sunrise period, the suggested retail price per .sucks domain name registration is...more

The Complexities of Canada’s Extension of Copyright Protection for Sound Recordings

On June 23, 2015, Royal Assent was given to Parliament’s Bill C-59, otherwise known as the Economic Action Plan 2015 Act, No. 1, otherwise known as the federal government’s 2015 budget. Contained in the legislation are...more

Corporate Housekeeping Tips: Keeping Your Website in Tip Top Shape

Among the other areas of your business that you need to keep in order, don’t forget your website. Your website is the company’s digital storefront to the public. Protecting it is paramount to protecting your brand. Below is a...more

Has the Supreme Court signaled the end of invalidity opinion letters?

On May 26, 2015, in the case of Commil USA, LLC v. CISCO Systems, Inc., the U.S. Supreme Court answered the question of whether a good-faith belief that a patent is invalid shields a party from committing induced...more

Rebuffing Critics, Supreme Court Re-Affirms Ban on Post-Expiration Patent Royalties

Fifty years ago, in Brulotte v. Thys Co., the U.S. Supreme Court held that the collection of royalties after a patent’s expiration constitutes per se patent misuse. Brulotte has been widely criticized as economically...more

The 'Super Powered' Rule of Stare Decisis Defeats Spider Man

The Supreme Court of the United States, in a 6-3 decision, left undisturbed the rule from its 51-year-old decision in Brulotte v. Thys Co. (1964), invoking stare decisis and rejecting arguments seeking to overturn the rule...more

No Coke, Pepsi. No Infringement, Summary Judgment?

2015 was the 40th anniversary for the NBC comedy series, Saturday Night Live (SNL). After 40 years, a television show is bound to have a cultural impact. And one of the series’ most well known sketches involves Olympia...more

Supreme Court Upholds Ban on Patent Royalties After Patent Term Expiration in Kimble v. Marvel Entertainment, LLC, No. 13-720...

On Monday, June 22, 2015, the Supreme Court reaffirmed its earlier precedent barring royalties on a patent after the patent term expires. Kimble v. Marvel Entertainment, LLC, No. 13-720 (U.S. June 22, 2015). Justice Kagan...more

Intellectual Property Bulletin - Spring 2015

California’s Eraser Law: What IP Attorneys and Owners Need to Know - Hector recently graduated from UC Berkeley and is anxious about his upcoming job interview. He is about to enter the adult world. But he has also got...more

Purple-Colored Fabric Tags Attached to Remote Control Found Inherently Distinctive

News flash, last Friday the USPTO approved for publication a non-traditional trademark that I’ve seen in real life before. Let’s just say it is attached to one of our many remote control devices that I’ve had to dig out from...more

Richard Prince Once Again Pushes The Limits Of Fair Use

Richard Prince is either on the very edge of fair use or is engaging in blatant copyright infringement. Unlike most however, Prince has been down this road before; accused of infringement and a defense based entirely on fair...more

Trump Goes A Rockin’: Neil Young Comes A Knockin’

Donald Trump, the New York real estate mogul and self-proclaimed business genius, just kicked off his campaign for the Republican Presidential nomination at Trump Tower in Manhattan to the tune of Neil Young’s Rockin’ In The...more

Copyright levies on memory cards for mobile phones: another landmark decision from the CJEU (Case C-463/12)

Questions of copyright levies are hotly debated, since the decision as to whether such levies have to be payed or not has a significant influence on the price of the affected technical products and the movement of these goods...more

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