Infringement

News & Analysis as of

China Court Ruled Infringement for Ambush Marketing in Film Industry

The term “Ambush Marketing” originally came from inappropriate sport advertisement in western countries. It involves a marketing strategy wherein the advertisers associate themselves with, and therefore capitalize on, a...more

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

Guidelines for Sponsored Content and Native Advertising

“Native advertising” has become popular with advertisers and publishers, but it has raised concerns by the Federal Trade Commission and NAD, the advertising self-regulatory organization, and spawned lawsuits by content owners...more

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

Holy Non-Infringement, Batman!

Fortres Grand Corporation v. Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. - The U.S Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit affirmed the dismissal of a trademark infringement claim, finding that a real computer software product...more

Ninth Circuit Finds Permanent Injunction Questionable Despite Trademark Infringement

La Quinta Worldwide LLC v. Q.R.T.M., S.A. De C.V., dba Quinta Real - While affirming trademark infringement with respect to a Mexican hotel chain’s use of its trademark in the United States, the U.S. Court of Appeals...more

Gangster Or Not

As a huge fan of gangster movies, I was intrigued by a recently filed lawsuit in California. Although I am familiar with actor Frank Sivero’s work in “The Godfather: Part II” and in “Goodfellas”, I am not familiar with the...more

Counterfeit Goods: Has the War on ISPs Just Gotten Tougher?

The pressure on ISPs to take responsibility for the sites accessible through their services has been growing in recent years (e.g., the requirement for certain ISPs to block filesharing sites). On October 17, 2014, the High...more

When is a Flavor/Taste Trademark Possible?

Are your intellectual taste buds craving more discussion of non-traditional trademarks? It’s not every day we have the opportunity to write about a restaurant’s claimed trademark protection for the flavor or taste of certain...more

Converse: Stomping Out Counterfeits through Int’l Trade Commission Proceedings

Earlier this week, Converse launched an all-out offensive to combat what it considers counterfeit and knock-off versions of its Chuck Taylor All-Star line of sneakers. Reports peg the number as at least 22 separate lawsuits...more

Ten Key Considerations on Chinese New Trademark Law

The Trademark Law of the People’s Republic of China was recently amended and went into effect on May 1, 2014, though in some cases it applies to violations that occurred prior to the effective date and continue after that...more

Gucci / Guess – The Italian Appeal: Gucci’s half victory against Guess on the ground of unfair competition

The Milan Court of Appeal has overturned the first instance decision and partially upheld Gucci’s claims, stating that Guess has committed an act of unfair competition, by parasitically copying a number of products of the...more

Will Montana-Based Victory Energize Win Its “Trademark Bully” Charge Against Monster?

Last week more allegations of “trademark bullying” appeared in the headlines. This time, Victory Energize, an energy drink company based in Missoula, Montana, is calling out Monster Energy for sending a cease and desist...more

Maintaining Strong Trademark Rights

I. Determining the Strength of Your Mark. The strength, or scope, of a trademark as used in the marketplace is determined by a multi-factored analysis called the likelihood of confusion test, and the scope can differ...more

Python Safety Files Trade Dress and Patent infringement Complaint Against Ty-Flot

On June 18, 2014, Python Safety, Inc. (“Python”), of Woodstock, GA filed a complaint against Ty-Flot, Inc. (“Ty-Flot”), of Manchester, NH, alleging federal trade dress infringement and unfair competition, infringement of US...more

(Subway) Eat Flesh, An Effective Parody?

This past weekend one of my sons said, “Dad, I have a good blog topic for you.” After he explained, it was clear, yes, son you do! So, he sent me the photo to the left. It is one that he recently snapped at a place that sells...more

Res judicata Does Not Bar Claims Arising After Prior Litigation, Even One Based on Similar Conduct

TechnoMarine SA v. Giftports Inc. - Addressing whether a prior litigation between the parties resolving claims of unfair competition bars subsequent suit over similar conduct occurring after settlement of the earlier...more

Arrow Productions, LTD v. The Weinstein Company LLC

Arrow Productions, LTD v. The Weinstein Company LLC - USDC, S.D. New York, August 25, 2014: District court dismisses copyright and trademark infringement claims of copyright owner of 1972 pornographic film Deep Throat,...more

Ice Cream Maker No Softee When It Comes to Infringement of Its Trademarks

Just as summer is coming to a close, the battle between Mister Softee and Master Softee appears to be heating up. Mister Softee is a family-owned business that has been in operation since 1956. It is the franchisor for the...more

Another Real Lulu: Anatomy of an Affidavit

On Tuesday of this week, we discussed the trademark infringement case filed by Lulu’s Market & Deli against Lulu’s Public House (depicted above), here is a link to a pdf of the Complaint. As you will recall, we...more

When Can You Be Sued For Introducing Copyrighted Works At Trial? Almost Never, But Plaintiffs Keep Trying

Professor Nimmer once identified the “weakest infringement claims of all time” as those involving attempts by copyright holders to prevent their copyrighted work from being used as evidence against them in court. “It seems...more

Technical infringements receive stiff fines from the European Commission

Both the Electrabel case and the Marine Harvest case serve as harsh wake-up calls that companies and their antitrust advisers must adopt a high level of caution when analysing whether a transaction must be notified under the...more

Wilson v. The Walt Disney Co. - USDC, N.D. California, July 30, 2014

Wilson v. The Walt Disney Co. - USDC, N.D. California, July 30, 2014: Identifying numerous similarities, the court allowed the plaintiff filmmaker to pursue a claim that Disney’s teaser trailer for Frozen infringed on...more

Are “Concurrent Damages” A Good Idea For Copyright Law?

About a year ago, we wrote about the final chapter in the copyright saga of Joel Tenenbaum, the Boston University student who was found liable for copyright infringement by a District of Massachusetts jury, based on his...more

European Commission's Actions to Better Protect and Enforce Intellectual Property Rights

Although the number of registrations of European Patents, Community Trademarks and Community Designs more than doubled between 2003 and 2012, the high numbers of infringements of intellectual property rights (IPRs) harm this...more

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