Foley Hoag LLP - Trademark, Copyright & Unfair Competition

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Boston, MA 02210-2600, United States

Contact: Jasmine Trillos-Decarie

  • 617-832-1000
  • 617-832-7000

A Trap For Santa: The First Santa Claus IP Fight

At this time of year, you may be wondering about the first intellectual property case involving Santa Claus. And even if you are not, we are going to tell you…more
| Art, Entertainment, & Sports Law, Civil Procedure, Commercial Law & Contracts, Intellectual Property

A Trademark Year in Wine and Beer: Our 2014 Holiday Buyer’s Guide to Disputed Beverages

If you are hosting or attending a party this holiday season, you probably need to pick up something to drink. This year, why not pick up a conversation starter as well? See if your local liquor store (in our neck of the woods, a…more
| Civil Procedure, Communications & Media Law, Intellectual Property

Court Rejects Glenn Beck’s “Limited Purpose” and “Involuntary” Public Figure Theories in Marathon Bombing Defamation Case

This week, Judge Patti B. Saris of the District of Massachusetts denied a motion to dismiss a defamation action that had been brought by Abdulrahman Alharbi against radio and television personality Glenn Beck. In denying the…more
| Civil Procedure, Communications & Media Law, Constitutional Law, Personal Injury

Turkey Purveyors Try to Gobble Up Trademark Rights

Last year, in the spirit of Thanksgiving, we told you about Horace W. Longacre’s unsuccessful attempt to register BAKED TAM as a trademark for its “turkey ham” product in the early 1980s. This year we bring you a related tale,…more
| Civil Procedure, Civil Remedies, Communications & Media Law, Intellectual Property

Federal Government Wins Trademark Battle to Shut Down “Voice of America” Website with “Undeniable Governmental Aesthetic”

Since its first broadcast on February 1, 1942, the Voice of America radio service (VOA) has aired countless hours of programming in dozens of languages to what is currently an estimated global audience of over 100 million…more
| Art, Entertainment, & Sports Law, Civil Procedure, Civil Remedies, Communications & Media Law, Intellectual Property

Use of Porn Star Images in “Romance Fraud” Dating Profiles Fails to Support Trademark and False Advertising Claims

The plaintiff in Avalos v. IAC/Interactive Corp. called it “one of the biggest conspiracies ever executed on the internet” — the unauthorized use of images of adult film stars in fake online dating profiles. But in an opinion…more
| Art, Entertainment, & Sports Law, Civil Procedure, Communications & Media Law, Intellectual Property

Political Ad’s Use of Trademark until Election Day Not Infringement

On October 28, 2014, Judge Paul Grewal of the Northern District of California ruled that a political advocacy website’s confusing use of the mark CHOOSE ENERGY could stay up . . . but perhaps only until election day…more
| Elections & Politics, Intellectual Property

Ninth Circuit Knocks Down Unfair Competition Case against Yelp!

For those few of you who don’t know already, Yelp! (“Yelp”) is a wildly popular website where people can share their reviews, opinions, experiences, and ratings of businesses across the country. This service is invaluable when…more
| Civil Procedure, Communications & Media Law, Consumer Protection, Personal Injury

The Haunted History of the Hallowine Trademark

Brewers, distillers, and vintners are no strangers to themed seasonal offerings, so it’s not surprising that Halloween brings out some decidedly decrepit monikers. From PUMPKINHEAD (think reaping) to NOSFERATU, WITCH’S WIT to…more
| Civil Procedure, Communications & Media Law, Intellectual Property

Defamation From Beyond the Grave: Using Your Last Will To Get In The Last Word

Halloween is a good time to think about how you want to die. Do you want to leave the world peacefully? Or do you want to go down trash talking, making sure that your enemies know exactly what you think about them, and that…more
| Civil Procedure, Communications & Media Law, Personal Injury, Wills, Trusts, & Estate Planning

The PTO vs. The Phantom Marks: A Ghost Story

Don’t read this one before bed. As autumn sets in and Halloween approaches, my mind turns to jack-o-lanterns, skeletons, and phantoms. Phantom marks, that is. Equally incorporeal though perhaps somewhat less frightening…more
| Civil Procedure, Communications & Media Law, Intellectual Property

Georgia State Academic Fair Use Decision Vacated by 11th Circuit: A (Relatively) Quick Read for the Busy Practitioner

Last Friday, the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals vacated and remanded the Northern District of Georgia’s 350-page fair use analysis of the electronic reserves practices at Georgia State University (“GSU”). Although this reversal…more
| Art, Entertainment, & Sports Law, Civil Procedure, Civil Remedies, Education, Intellectual Property

Superman Dodges a Bullet: Supreme Court Denies Certiorari in Heirs’ Bid to Reclaim Character Copyright

Close on the heels of the settlement between Marvel Comics and Jack Kirby’s heirs, which ended their dispute over copyright in a number of iconic comic book characters, the heirs to one of Superman’s co-creators, artist Joseph…more
| Art, Entertainment, & Sports Law, Civil Procedure, Commercial Law & Contracts, Intellectual Property, Wills, Trusts, & Estate Planning

Appearances Aside, “Something More” Still Needed for Trademark Infringement Liability in Keyword Advertising Cases

Search engine optimization is a vital issue for brand owners. When a potential customer searches online for Company A, a well-known brand, Company A naturally wants its own website to be as high in the search results as…more
| Civil Procedure, Communications & Media Law, Intellectual Property

Superheroes for Hire? Marvel Comics and Jack Kirby Heirs Settle Character Copyright Dispute

As regular readers of this blog will know, comic book superheroes frequently find themselves at the center of legal disputes over copyright in fictional characters. In many cases, both sides agree that the characters in…more
| Art, Entertainment, & Sports Law, Civil Procedure, Intellectual Property
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