Likelihood of Confusion

News & Analysis as of

Is Ronald McDonald Lovin’ This Fryday?

When I recently snapped the above image of a t-shirt on display at a large retailer in the Twin Cities, it made me want to ask the same question many survey experts will ask of respondents to determine whether a likelihood of...more

Pacifico Defends its Trademark Rights on Canadian Soil

Another intellectual property dispute has arisen in the brewing industry. This time, however, the battle took place on Canadian soil. British Columbia based Pacific Western Brewing (“PWB”) sued renowned Mexican brewery...more

Trademark Review | October 2015

Barbeque Manufacturer Feels the Burn after TTAB Ruling - The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board sustained the opposition to an application to register SWISS GRILLS for lack of bona fide intent at the time of filing and for...more


You might be familiar with the popular mid-90s commercials suggested by the title of this post. However, the intention of this post is about the use of trademarks on beer to refuse trademark protection for wineries and vice...more

Amazon Wins Ruling on Results for Searches on Brands It Doesn’t Sell

On October 21, 2015, the Ninth Circuit ruled that online retailer Amazon does not violate the Lanham Act when, in response to a search for a brand it doesn’t sell, it returns a results page that fails to disclose that fact...more

The Katten Kattwalk - Issue 08

The Katten Kattwalk discusses legal issues in the fashion industry affecting the trademarks, patents and copyrights associated with companies, brands and products. Letter From the Editor - Fashion Week has come and...more

Grrrr . . . Paw Print Trademarks Can Co-Exist - Jack Wolfskin Ausrustung Fur Draussen GmbH & Company KGAA v. New Millennium...

On appeal from the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB or Board), the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit reversed the Board’s decision on the issue of likelihood of confusion with regard to two parties’ paw...more

Intellectual Property Bulletin - Summer 2015

28 U.S.C. § 1782: A Powerful Tool in Global Disputes - As the number and complexity of cross-border and multi-jurisdictional disputes increase, companies can use 28 U.S.C. § 1782 to obtain evidence from U.S.-based...more

Trademark Review | September 2015

The TTAB Finds Confusion Between WINEBUD Wine and BUD Beer The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) found that Applicant’s mark WINEBUD for wine is confusingly similar to Anheuser-Busch’s (“AB”) BUD mark. The TTAB...more

Easy Registration Refusal, See Park ‘N Fly

Trademark types know all about Park ‘N Fly, whether they travel or not. That’s because it is more than a nearly fifty year old airport parking and travel service brand and federally-registered service mark, it is short-hand...more

Is There No Room for a Queen of Beer?

Anheuser-Busch, LLC (“Anheuser-Busch”) is the leading brewer in the United States and holds about a 46% share of U.S. beer sales to retailers. It has been using its well-known KING OF BEERS trademark for over sixty years and...more

Tiffany & Company v. Costco Wholesale: Tiffany is far from Generic

On September 9, 2015, the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York ruled that Costco was willfully infringing Tiffany & Co.’s trademarks by selling diamond engagement rings bearing the renowned...more

The Survey Says: TIFFANY Is Not Generic for a Ring Setting

Last week, the Southern District of New York granted summary judgment to Tiffany & Co. on its trademark infringement claim against Costco Wholesale Corporation for selling rings advertised under the TIFFANY mark. Tiffany &...more

A Spin of the Wheel Results in Broader Injunctive Relief - CFE Racing Products, Inc. v. BMF Wheels, Inc.

Addressing numerous evidentiary issues arising during the course of a jury trial, as well as the scope of a permanent injunction, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit affirmed in part and remanded in part the...more

When Peace and Love Are Not Enough: Consider It All - Juice Generation, Inc. v. GS Enters., LLC

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit reversed a refusal by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board’s (TTAB or Board) to register the mark “PEACE LOVE AND JUICE” in connection with juice bar services due to...more

Do’s Search Results Constitute Trademark Infringement? - Multi Time Machine, Inc. v., Inc.

Holding that a reasonable jury could find that online retailer created a likelihood of consumer confusion through the format of its product search returns, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit reversed the district...more

Third Circuit Deciphers Proper Standard for Evidence of Actionable Confusion - Arrowpoint Capital Corp. v. Arrowpoint Asset Mgmt.,...

Addressing the standard for actionable confusion, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit reversed the district court’s denial of a motion for a preliminary injunction for limiting what constitutes actionable...more

Proof of Confusion Essential for Trademark Injunction - Arborjet, Inc. v. Rainbow Treecare Scientific Advancements, Inc.

Addressing the likelihood of success requirement for injunctive relief, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit vacated an order requiring trademark attribution where the district court had not found a likelihood of...more

EU General Court rules on likelihood of confusion between trade marks that use foreign script

The European General Court's decision in Loutfi Management Propriété Intellectuelle SARL v AMJ Meatproducts (Case C-147/14) concerned the use of non-Latin script in Community trade marks (“CTMs”). The General Court held that...more

Naked Consent: When Does Yes Mean No?

Consent agreements - in which a prior U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) rights-holder provides consent to registration of a later-filed trademark - can be an efficient path to registration in situations where the...more

I Think That I Shall Never See, Trademark Injunctions If Confusion Is Unlikely

In its recent decision in Arborjet, Inc. v. Rainbow Treecare Scientific Advancements, Inc., a case involving claims for breach of contract and trademark infringement, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit affirmed a...more

Trademark Practitioners Beware: Issue Preclusion May Now Apply to TTAB Findings More Often Than You Think

Trademark owners and practitioners who took heart in the Supreme Court's seemingly confined holding that issue preclusion can but does not necessarily apply to likelihood of confusion determinations by the Trademark Trial and...more

Trademark Review | August 2015

The Redskins Lose Again (Off the Field)- A federal District Court affirmed the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board’s (TTAB) ruling that “Redskins” cannot be registered as a trademark for use in connection with a...more

Use of Competitors’ Trademarks as Google AdWords is not Infringement

The British Columbia Supreme Court has decided that the use of a competitor’s trademarks in Google AdWords does not constitute infringement. In Vancouver Community College v Vancouver Career College (Burnaby) Inc.,...more

B&B Hardware v. Hargis – What it Means and How it will Affect TTAB Litigation

The U.S. Supreme Court recently issued a decision that may significantly impact how Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (“TTAB”) cases are litigated and whether potential litigants elect to forego TTAB litigation in certain...more

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