Likelihood of Confusion

News & Analysis as of

MarkIt to Market - November 2014

The November issue of Sterne Kessler's MarkIt to MarketTM newsletter includes a case study on bona fide intent to use, a resolution to Anthropologie's opposition to the mark, and an updated list of the Sunrise periods...more

Trademark Review: Nationstar, L.A.M.B., and Cinderella (November 2014)

Post Bose: The TTAB Cancels a Registration on the Ground of Fraud - Nationstar opposed an application for NATIONSTAR filed by an individual named Mujahid Ahmad. Nationstar claimed Mr. Ahmad committed fraud on the U.S....more

Trademark Cases Pending Before the U.S. Supreme Court

In December, the Supreme Court of the United States will hear oral arguments on two trademark cases: B&B Hardware, Inc. v. Hargis Industries, Inc. and Hana Financial v. Hana Bank. These cases address the issues of whether 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

Supreme Court Told That TTAB Preclusion Raises Constitutional Concerns

As reported in our September 23 Client Alert, the Supreme Court is set to hear argument on December 2 on the issue of whether likelihood of confusion findings by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) are entitled to...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

Second Circuit Clarifies the Use of Legal Presumptions of Consumer Confusion and Injury in Certain Lanham Act Cases

On Tuesday, July 29, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit “clarified certain aspects of [its] false advertising jurisprudence” and held that, where literal falsity and deliberate deception have been...more

Dethroning a Right to Register a Trademark?

Last month, you will recall we wrote about the important difference between the right to register a trademark and the right to use a trademark...more

Supreme Court To Decide Preclusive Effect of TTAB Decisions on Subsequent Court Actions

Last week the Supreme Court granted certiorari to determine whether decisions of the Trademark Trial and Appeals Board (TTAB) concerning likelihood of confusion preclude relitigating that issue in subsequent infringement...more

UPDATE: U.S. Supreme Court Will Decide What Preclusive Effect, If Any, Should Be Given to Likelihood of Confusion Findings by the...

As we reported in our May 29 client alert, the Solicitor General submitted an amicus brief recommending that the Supreme Court grant a petition for certiorari seeking a determination of whether likelihood of confusion...more

Flummoxed By FLANAX: TTAB Cancels Trademark Registration Based On Misrepresentation As To Source Despite No Use In U.S. By...

In an interesting precedential decision, the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) canceled a registration for FLANAX despite the fact that the petitioner, Bayer Consumer Care AG, did not use FLANAX in the United States,...more

STONE LION CAPITAL Likely to Cause Consumer Confusion with LION and LION CAPITAL

Stone Lion Capital Partners, L.P. v. Lion Capital LLP - The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit affirmed the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board’s decisions sustaining an opposition to registration of the mark...more

Bait-And-Switch Trademark Case Defines Limits Of Initial Interest Confusion

In its recent decision in Sussman-Automatic v. Spa World, the Eastern District of New York dismissed a plaintiff’s trademark infringement claims, while allowing its claims for false advertising based on the same conduct to...more

Pick Your Passion: State’s Trademark May Be Used To Criticize Its Governor

In Dardenne v. MoveOn.org, the Middle Louisiana Federal District Court faced a conflict between trademark protection, on the one hand, and the First Amendment’s protection of political advocacy, on the other. The Court...more

Trade-mark Confusion: Is One Letter Enough of a Difference?

BIG BITE vs. BIT BITE. These two marks were assessed in the recent case of 7-Eleven, Inc v BitBite Foods Inc. , 2014 TMOB 16 (CanLII), for snack food products. BitBite Foods filed an application to register the BIT...more

Petition for Certiorari Filed Regarding Preclusive Effect of Likelihood of Confusion Findings by the Trademark Trial and Appeal...

In advising clients and making strategic decisions about whether to bring or defend inter partes proceedings before the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board ("TTAB"), trademark practitioners need to consider carefully whether...more

CRACKER BARREL on Cheese and Ham—Likely to Cause Consumer Confusion - Kraft Brands Food Group v. Cracker Barrel Old Country Store

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit upheld a preliminary injunction barring use of the mark Cracker Barrel Old Country Store for use in connection with ham products to be sold in supermarkets, based on...more

Rhymin’ & Stealin’ & Filin’ Lawsuits

Last month, I wrote about the preemptive lawsuit filed by GoldieBlox, a toy retailer, against the Beastie Boys. GoldieBlox sought declaratory relief that their use of the Beastie Boys’ song “Girls” in a GoldieBlox...more

Australian Postal Corporation v Digital Post Australia [2013] FCAFC 153

On 6 December 2013, the Full Court of the Federal Court of Australia dismissed an appeal by Australian Postal Corporation (Australia Post) and upheld the primary judge's decision that "DIGITAL POST AUSTRALIA" is not...more

Kraft v. Cracker Barrel: A Summary of Judge Posner’s Opinion and an Alternative Reverse Confusion Theory of Liability

In a unanimous opinion authored by Judge Posner, the Seventh Circuit recently upheld the district judge’s granting of plaintiff Kraft Foods Group Brands LLC’s motion to preliminarily enjoin defendant Cracker Barrel Old...more

Trademarks 101 PART 5 — Avoiding Mistakes in the Trademark Process by Assessing the Likelihood of Confusion

So, startups and entrepreneurs, you think your trademark situation is totally cool because you conducted a full trademark search, right? Wrong. Well, at least not necessarily…...more

Ballin’ Spoofers Ain’t Homies of Luxury Brands

As hipsters continue to rule the world, parody shirts, hats and other apparel have become increasingly prevalent, much to the dismay of luxury brand owners. Here are some recent examples...more

Does Oprah Winfrey Own Your Power?

The phrase “Own Your Power” is plastered on Oprah Winfrey’s website, discussed at length in O, The Oprah Magazine, and widely publicized through corporate sponsored events. But there is one small problem—Winfrey may not...more

Use of Competitor’s Trademark As Trigger for Sponsored Ad is Not Trademark Infringement According to Tenth Circuit

Despite years of litigation over keyword advertising, very few courts have reached the important question whether the use of a trademark solely as a trigger for an advertisement is likely to cause confusion. Last week, in a...more

The Katten Kattwalk – Spring 2013

In this issue: - Questions Left Unanswered by Louboutin Case - Supreme Court Rules on Covenant Not to Sue - An Eye for Fashion: New York Magazine Presents New York’s - Women Leaders in the...more

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