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Tasting Notes: When Alcohol Goods and Services Descriptions Matter

On December 11, I will be presenting a CLE on Brewery and Distillery Law, discussing trademark issues affecting breweries and distilleries. One of the topics that I’ll spend some time on during that presentation – and one...more

Long Trail Brewing Tells Burton to TAKE A HIKE!

What happens when a clothing manufacturer starts selling graphic t-shirts and sweatshirts, perhaps without doing a proper trademark search? Sometimes a lawsuit....more

The End Times for Brands?

Several years ago I wrote a post about Selfridges’ “No Noise” campaign, featuring de-branded from brands like Heinz, Clinique, and Levi’s. In that post, I asked whether de-branded design would soon become a new trend....more

THE SLANTS Decision Affects More than a 2(a) and an (R)

In Monday’s decision in the newly minted, Matal v. Tam case, the Supreme Court affirmed the Federal Circuit decision that the Trademark Office’s refusal to register THE SLANTS mark on disparagement grounds was...more

On Flag Day, What Flag Can You Protect?

Today is Flag Day, which commemorates the adoption of the Stars and Stripes as our national flag 240 years ago. Although maybe more obscure than Fourth of July or Memorial Day since it is not a federal holiday, this has...more

The Muddy Waters of Use for Beer Brands

The Craft Brewers Conference is an impressive affair. Between the number of brewers I’ve met from across the country as well as internationally, and the colossal trade show, the breadth and scope of the industry is probably...more

“Pardon Me, PORTON,” says PATRON, “But We Heard You”

Pisco is a light-colored brandy traditionally produced in portions of Peru and Chile.  One brand that offers this product in the United States is PISCO PORTÓN (the later word meaning “gate” in Spanish)....more

Jager Fears the Deer: Brand Refresh Turns Into Battle

The word “Jägermeister” conjures up memories (or maybe lapses in memory) for many. I have only had the German liqueur in the beautiful blue-collar town of Milwaukee, WI – home of my college alma mater. While you would never...more

“Just Say No” to Rejection of Marijuana Trademarks

Overshadowed by that yuuuge, shocking, {insert adjective for your feelings here} win was the legalization of recreational marijuana in three more states – California, Massachusetts and Nevada – in conflict with federal law. ...more

Creative Acronyms Refused Sometimes…Or CARS

Today’s offices treat acronyms like linguistic yoga (TOTALLY). ICYMI, they’re popular also in texts, tweets, and other “thumb-talking” activities. LOL. SMH. Legislators are having fun with them lately too, for...more

Four T’s at Four: What Breweries Need to Know About Their IP Before They Consider an Exit

“Forties at 4” was a time-honored Friday tradition among my engineering classmates in college. After our last class, several of them would purchase Miller (if we could find it in a 40 oz) or Old English or some other malt...more

A Duel Over DUO Leaves Only Uno

The never-ending battle at the Trademark Office over trademarks for beer and wine suffered another casualty last week, this time over the mark DUO. Applicant Uinta Brewing Company filed a use-based application to register...more

Here, Have a BREXIT

The British are leaving! The British are leaving! Many people on all sides of “the pond” last week watched the Brits’ vote to leave the European Union with interest, and were shocked when they actually voted to cut ties...more

The USPTO Says “Yes” But the TTB Says “No” To LSD

Government approval of commercial speech has been a hot topic of discussion by trademark nerds here and elsewhere in light of recent decisions regarding the Redskins and The Slants marks. As those decisions proceed up...more

Consent or Not, No Trademark Registration for Brewer’s TIME TRAVELER BLONDE Mark

When an application has been refused registration in view of another’s prior filed mark, one way to resolve the issue is through a consent agreement wherein the registrant consents to the registration and the parties set out...more

Have Yourself a Merry 12 Days of SWIFTMAS

Even amid the December hustle and bustle of the holidays, my mind is never very far from trademark and patent issues – especially when getting Christmas songs stuck in my head while shopping for friends and family. I’m prone...more

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