United States Patent and Trademark Office Trademarks

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office is an agency of the United States Department of Commerce that serves a fundamental role in the U.S. intellectual property system by issuing patents and registering trademarks.... more +
The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office is an agency of the United States Department of Commerce that serves a fundamental role in the U.S. intellectual property system by issuing patents and registering trademarks.    less -
News & Analysis as of

Effective Enforcement Strategies – Letters of Protest

A letter of protest is an informal procedure that allows third parties to bring to the attention of the USPTO evidence bearing on the registrability of a mark. The letter is filed with the Director of Trademarks and if the...more

The Katten Kattwalk - Issue 07

Happy summer! We are seeing some great new styles this summer here on Madison Avenue, and of course, there are a number of hot legal issues to consider as we head into the fall. Our latest issue discusses the applicability of...more

A Tale Of Trade And Trademarks: General Cigar Co., Inc. v. Empresa Cubana Del Tabaco

The United States has taken several recent steps towards normalizing its ties with Cuba and, just yesterday, the two countries re-opened embassies in each other’s capitals for the first time since 1961. Despite these...more

Despite Cancellation, the Washington Redskins' Trademark is Not up for Grabs

As of Wednesday, July 08, 2015, the Washington Redskins have lost a long-fought batter to maintain its federal trademark registrations covering “REDSKINS.” Back in June of 2014, the United States Patent and Trademark Office...more

Will Starbucks Be a Closer at the USPTO?

We’ll soon see whether coffee truly goes hand in hand with closers, at least in one famous brand owner’s quest for registration of a non-verbal, non-traditional color trademark at the USPTO. I’ve been noticing Starbucks focus...more

Redskins Trademarks – Answers to Key Questions Regarding Recent Ruling

Last week, the U.S. District Court sitting in Alexandria, Virginia granted what would appear to be a sweeping victory to a group of five Native Americans who have renewed attempts to cancel the federal registrations of...more

Chipping Away at the Dead Wood and Other Registered-But-Unused Marks

An ongoing issue faced by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has been the number of trademark registrations granted or retained for over-inclusive identifications of goods and/or services where the...more

What’s in a Name? District Court’s Trademark Cancellation Order Casts Further Doubt on “Redskins” Moniker

Taking big hits is quite familiar to professional football teams.  The hit laid down by a federal District Court on July 8, 2015, however, is one that Washington’s professional football franchise will remember for a long...more

Changes in U.S Certification Mark Requirements

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) recently issued a final rule codifying current USPTO practice relating to certification marks. Certification marks are used by authorized users to indicate the following:...more

The B&B Hardware Case and its Potential Impact on Trademark Litigation

Trademark disputes can often play out in a number of forums. Trademark disputes often start off in the marketplace, with a confused consumer, and then proceed to litigation in several tribunals including the Trademark Trial...more

Katy Perry Hits Roadblock in Obtaining Trademark Registration for Left Shark

Singer Katy Perry’s attempt to register the term “Left Shark”—the name of her dancing companion during the 2015 Super Bowl Halftime Show—with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”) has been delayed, while her...more

Closing the U.S. Border Gates Against Infringing Imports

Could infringing imports be jeopardizing your intellectual property rights without your knowledge? U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) may be a valuable resource to protect your registered U.S. trademarks and copyrights,...more

Purple-Colored Fabric Tags Attached to Remote Control Found Inherently Distinctive

News flash, last Friday the USPTO approved for publication a non-traditional trademark that I’ve seen in real life before. Let’s just say it is attached to one of our many remote control devices that I’ve had to dig out from...more

Going YARD with the VARO Brand for Batters?

Time spent with my boys in Omaha at the College World Series is hard to beat. Although, last year, Father’s Day weekend was hard to beat too. And, the archives indicate five years ago was pretty wonderful as well. Basically,...more

Intellectual Property Alert: USPTO Announces Expedited Patent Appeal Pilot Program

Yesterday, the United States Patent and Trademark Office announced the “Expedited Patent Appeal Pilot” to provide a temporary basis for an applicant to have an ex parte appeal to the Patent Trial and Appeal Board accorded...more

Should You File Trademark Applications on Your Own?

A recent article published by World Trademark Review talked about the pros and cons of individuals filing their own trademark applications without the benefit of experienced trademark counsel. First and foremost, individuals...more

Appealing a Trademark Registration Refusal? Win or Lose, You May Have to Pay the USPTO’s Legal Fees

The federal Trademark Act (the Lanham Act) instructs that if an unsuccessful trademark applicant appeals a refusal to register in federal district court, the applicant must name the Director of the U.S. Patent & Trademark...more

Filing a New ITU Trademark Application? Be Prepared to Prove Your Intent

Staking an early claim to a brand has inspired many hasty (and sometimes ill-advised) trademark applications. For example, trademark applications representing political rallying cries and pop culture slogans such as JE SUIS...more

Walt Disney's TM Case Could be Heard by the Supreme Court

Back in February of 2014, Walt Disney Co. (“Disney”) successfully upheld its cancellation proceeding of a registration for a rival PLAYDOM mark on the grounds that the owner, David Couture (“Couture”), was not using the mark...more

Pepsi’s Next Generation: The Last Generation

Back in the 1960s, Pepsi burst onto the scene by announcing to the youth of decade that they were the Pepsi Generation (they didn’t have a choice). Then, in the 1980s, Pepsi became “The Choice of a New Generation.” And...more

Losing Marbles With Packaging Trademarks

Welcome to yet another edition of non-traditional trademarks, but instead of discussing brown paper bags for chips as trademarks, today we’re focusing on a U.S. trademark registration that surprisingly issued just a few weeks...more

Litigants Challenging PTO Decisions in District Court Should Be Prepared to Pay PTO’s Attorneys’ Fees - Shammas v. Focarino

Addressing the issue of attorneys’ fees in connection with a district court challenge of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s (PTO’s) decision to reject a trademark registration, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth...more

Modern Hieroglyphs: Intellectual Property Signs of the Times

You see them every day; those funny-looking characters and symbols splashed all over goods and advertisements.  ?.  ?.  Our friends “TM” and “SM” and even ?.  Like modern hieroglyphs, we know that these symbols have some...more

Federal Circuit Vacates Panel Decision on Disparaging Trademark and Orders En Banc Hearing - In re Tam

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit issued a sua sponte order vacating its April 20, 2015, decision in In re Tam to consider the constitutionality of Section 2(a) of the Lanham Act, which provides that the U. S....more

Facebook vs. DESIGNBOOK: Is Anybody Watching?

One might assume that Facebook, the ubiquitous social media platform that aggregates and analyzes nearly 1 billion users‘ data, would know every nook and cranny of the USPTO trademark database. Apparently, that’s not quite...more

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