Foley Hoag LLP - Trademark, Copyright & Unfair Competition

Defamation Takes A Holiday: Slander And The Salem Witch Trials

Hypothetical: You go out for a nice stroll one Halloween only to have a neighbor emerge from his house with a pitchfork and accuse you of being a witch in front of the whole village. For the sake of argument, let’s say you are…more
| Civil Procedure, Communications & Media Law

10 Copyright Cases Every Fan Fiction Writer Should Know About

If you are a Star Trek fan, the name Axanar has almost certainly crossed your lips or your computer screen recently. Axanar is a film (well, at least a very good trailer aspiring to be a film) set in the Star Trek universe,…more
| Art, Entertainment, & Sports Law, Civil Procedure, Intellectual Property

Happy Birthday To Me: An Iconic Song Enters The Public Domain After Copyright Settlement

As I turn 50 years old this week, I can’t help but think of the famous Happy Birthday song and the class action that resulted in its entering the public domain earlier this year. The class action plaintiffs in that case filed a…more
| Civil Procedure, Intellectual Property

Hot News, Shredded Wheat and Wool Underwear: Brandeis On Copyright And Trademark

October 9 marks the 100th anniversary of Louis Brandeis’ first session as a justice of the Supreme Court of the United States (October 9, 1916 was the second Monday in October – in 1917, the Court began meeting on the first…more
| Civil Procedure, Intellectual Property

District Court Denies Motion To Dismiss In Popcorn App Copyright Fight

This summer, the competition for popcorn popping mobile apps heated up as the creators of “Perfect Popcorn” and “iMunchies” battled over copyright infringement claims. On July 18, 2016, a judge in the Northern District of…more
| Civil Procedure, Intellectual Property, Science, Computers, & Technology

Of Slants, Skins And Signs: The Supreme Court Grants Certiorari

We have been following the course of In re Tam as it has progressed through the PTO and the courts. To recap, at issue is whether Section 2(a) of the Lanham Act, which prohibits the registration of marks that may disparage…more
| Art, Entertainment, & Sports Law, Civil Procedure, Constitutional Law, Intellectual Property

Trademarks in Telemark: Five Brands and Other Things to Look For at PTMG in Oslo

I am excited to be traveling to Norway next week to attend my first conference of the Pharmaceutical Trade Marks Group in Oslo. Not having been to PTMG before, I can’t offer much insight on the conference, but since I lived in…more
| Civil Procedure, Intellectual Property, International Law & Trade, Science, Computers, & Technology

European Court Of Justice: Linking To Playboy Pics May Infringe Copyright

On September 8, 2016, the European Court of Justice rendered a controversial decision in GS Media v. Sanoma Media, which has been acclaimed by copyright holders and heavily criticized by internet companies…more
| Art, Entertainment, & Sports Law, Civil Procedure, Intellectual Property, International Law & Trade, Science, Computers, & Technology

Advertising Through Social Media: Ten Tips For FTC & NAD Compliance

Most modern advertising campaigns include social media components. In fact, it is not uncommon today to see products advertised exclusively on social media. For the most part, the same rules that govern traditional advertising…more
| Antitrust & Trade Regulation, Communications & Media Law, Intellectual Property

I May Not Be Able To Pronounce Acai But I Know It Doesn’t Burn Fat Cells: 5 Recent Over-the-Top Weight Loss Advertising Claims And How The Federal Trade Commission Responded

Some say “ah-sigh;” I say “ah-kai;” but apparently the proper pronunciation of “acai” — the so-called super berry — is actually “ah-sigh-ee.” Who knew? Acai berries are native to the Amazon rainforest and have been hailed by…more
| Antitrust & Trade Regulation, Communications & Media Law

Fall Is In The Air: Are The Justices Getting Ready For The Gridiron?

The Washington Redskins Ask The Supreme Court To Block Fourth Circuit From Participation In Important Trademark Cases Another Labor Day is behind us, kids are back to school, and fall has unofficially arrived (it will…more
| Art, Entertainment, & Sports Law, Constitutional Law, Intellectual Property

Copyright Plaintiffs Keep Trying to Topple Empire. Can Proto-Cookie Succeed Where Others Failed?

Just in time for the Season 3 premiere, let’s take a look back at Empire’s year in IP litigation. Like the fictional Lyon family, which is constantly beset by threats from Feds, old criminal connections, and music business…more
| Art, Entertainment, & Sports Law, Intellectual Property

I Really Like “I [LOVE] NY” – The History Of An Iconic Logo And Ad Campaign

I am in New York City for the Intellectual Property Owners Association’s (“IPO”) Annual Meeting. I have been to the Annual Meeting before in other cities and had a great time, but was thrilled when I heard that it was going to…more
| Intellectual Property

Copyright At The Museum: Musings In Anticipation Of The IPO Dinner At The MOMA

As a fan of modern art, I am looking forward to the dinner reception at next week’s Annual Meeting of the Intellectual Property Owners Association (IPO), which will be held at New York’s Museum of Modern Art. As a member of…more
| Art, Entertainment, & Sports Law, Intellectual Property

Don’t Think About Copyright Law on Labor Day

Labor Day is the wrong time to think about copyright law, especially in 2016, because this year marks the twenty fifth anniversary of the Supreme Court’s decision in Feist Publications v. Rural Telephone Service, 499 U.S. 340…more
| Constitutional Law, Intellectual Property
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