Trademarks

A Trademark is a legally registered distinctive mark or sign which identifies goods, products or services that originate or are associated with a particular person or enterprise . A typical example of a trademark... more +
A Trademark is a legally registered distinctive mark or sign which identifies goods, products or services that originate or are associated with a particular person or enterprise . A typical example of a trademark would be a company's logo such as the Nike "Check" or McDonald's "Golden Arches."  less -
News & Analysis as of

Making Tequila and Pisco Shots Safe From Confusion

The United States Patent and Trademark Office, Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (the “Board”) cancelled the registration for the mark PORTÓN last week, finding it to be confusingly similar to the senior mark PATRÓN. Patrón...more

A Family Victory! Victory! Just Not for Little Caesars

The United States Patent and Trademark Office, Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (the “Board”) modified its treatment of the “family of trademarks” doctrine in the recent case In re LC Trademarks, Inc., Serial No. 85890412...more

Pizza! Pizza!: Little Caesar’s Repeated Term Slogans Are Not a “Family of Marks”

Although most people will recognize the ubiquitous PIZZA! PIZZA! slogan mark owned by the pizza chain Little Caesar’s, the company’s collection of repeated term marks does not rise to the level of a “family of marks”...more

Another IP Lesson from Bikini Bottom: What “The Krusty Krab” Teaches Us About Trademark Protection for Fictional Places

In a previous post we discussed what SpongeBob SquarePants can teach us about trademark licensing. Now, more IP lessons are bubbling up from the fathoms below thanks to our absorbent, yellow and porous friend. ...more

UK, US, HK and China – Access denied: an international perspective on ISP blocking injunctions

While the UK Court of Appeal has opened the door for broadband ISP blocking to combat trademark or copyright-infringing activities, the picture in the United States, China and Hong Kong is more complex. Please see full...more

Canadian IP law and practice in 2016: reviewing the highlights

As the calendar turns the page from 2016 to 2017, we take the opportunity to review Canadian IP law and practice highlights from the past year....more

How to Invent Your Trademark - LightSwitch: Intellectual Property Law Update

There is this funny little book I read many years ago: Figures of Speech or 60 Ways to Turn a Phrase. The author, Arthur Quinn, describes 60 different ways to come up with a phrase or word that makes your prose and speech...more

Rejecting Trademark Licenses in Bankruptcy: In re Tempnology

The decision provides some additional, though limited protection for licensees of trademarks in bankruptcy proceedings. Introduction - In In re Tempnology LLC,1 the Bankruptcy Appellate Panel (the BAP) for the...more

U.S. Supreme Court to Hear Arguments on January 18, 2017 in “The Slants” Case.

As we reported to you last September, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear the case involving the constitutionality of the provisions of the Lanham Act upon which the U.S. Trademark Office relied to deny registration of the...more

It’s a Game Winning Shot but Far from a Slam Dunk: Michael Jordan Obtains Partial Victory in Chinese Courts over Use of His Name

In December 2016, China’s Supreme Court held that a Chinese manufacturer named Qiaodan Sports Company, could not continue to produce athletic shoes, clothing and gear bearing the trademark (see article), which is the Chinese...more

Introduction to Trademarks Part 1

Trademark has a major value for any business, and one of the primary concerns of any well-established or successful business man. Therefore at the beginning we must clarify what a Trademark is, its importance, and how the law...more

Smart Cannabis Businesses are Staking a Claim to Their Intellectual Property

Yes, cannabis is still listed as a Schedule 1 Controlled Substance; and yes, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) will not register trademarks for cannabis strains. But there are still a number of creative...more

Trademark Trial and Appeal Board: Non-Spanish Speakers Would Confuse PATRON and PORTON Trademarks

In a non-precedential opinion, the U.S. Trademark Trial and Appeal Board cancelled two US trademark registrations for the mark PORTON, finding it to be confusingly similar to the mark PATRON. Patron Spirits International AG...more

Federal Circuit Clarifies Descriptiveness Standard in Overturning ‘Dotblog’ Trademark Refusal

It’s not uncommon for internet-based services to utilize names referencing their online presence, much like it is not uncommon for the monikers of app-based services to refer to their mobile format. But at what point does a...more

Suggestive Versus Descriptive Marks

Addressing the validity of, and likelihood of confusion between, two data-driven analytic software companies’ “Collective”-formative trademarks, the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit disagreed with the district...more

Satisfaction of Lanham Act Use “in Commerce” Requirement Does Not Require Much

In a decision addressing the use “in commerce” requirement under the Lanham Act, the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit reversed and remanded a Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) decision cancelling a trademark...more

Trademark Red Tape: Comeuppance For Trademark Con-Artists

January 2017 - Happy holidays and welcome to the 2017 New Year edition of Trademark Red Tape, our periodic round-up of trademark news and happenings at the United States Patent & Trademark Office. Here are the...more

Trademark Office warns about deceptive trademark-related solicitations

The recent focus on fake news should remind trademark owners of the special care they need to take with communications about their trademark applications....more

gTLD Sunrise Periods Now Open

As first reported in our December 2013 newsletter, the first new generic top-level domains (gTLDs, the group of letters after the "dot" in a domain name) have launched their "Sunrise" registration periods. Please see our...more

Design Patents – The Forgotten Protection

The use of design patents to protect a new product is frequently overlooked. The public only becomes aware of design patents whenever the rare blockbuster jury verdict arises such as Apple’s verdict over Samsung over iPhone...more

Craft brewery startups: Early stage IP considerations

By all accounts, as we head into 2017, the craft beer industry will continue to experience tremendous growth. This is due to primarily to increasing consumer demand. Also, favorable legislation in some states should help fuel...more

Trademarks - New Year, Clean Start

As 2016 draws to a close, now is the perfect time to slow down (or at least try), wrap up loose ends, and plan for the promise and possibility of a new year. For businesses, the holidays are a particularly good time to...more

The 4-Hour Plaintiff: Author/Speaker/Podcaster Tim Ferriss Secures Default Judgment

Order Granting In Part And Denying In Part Plaintiffs’ Motion For Default Judgment, Timothy Ferriss, et al. v. Alliance Publishing, Inc., et al., Case No. 15-cv-05675 (Judge Edward M. Chen) - Tim Ferriss is known for...more

MarkIt to Market® - December 2016

The December 2016 issue of Sterne Kessler's MarkIt to Market® includes practical tips for businesses trying to kick-start the year with an annual year-end trademark audit and lists the new gTLD Sunrise periods. Please...more

Trademark Year In Review And What Lies Ahead: The Lanham Act’s New Year’s Resolutions For 2017

2016 is now in the rear view mirror. At the beginning of a new year, we often take a moment to reflect on the past year, while setting goals for the present. It’s a time to say, “Last year had its ups and downs, but this...more

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