A recent litigation brought against the parent company of the popular app Snapchat is a good reminder of the importance of clearing a mark and the pitfalls young companies face as they begin to mature. » Read More
In addition to protection for traditional trademarks and copyrights, businesses are also looking to promote and protect a product’s trade dress. Non-functional elements of a product’s trade dress, such as shape, color, design, and layout can also distinguish your product and emphasis on these elements should be made in marketing efforts. » Read More
Last week, the Georgia Court of Appeals dismissed a trademark infringement case against a veteran-owned organization seeking to use military-themed concepts in its business model. Atlanta-based Afterburner, Inc., a military-themed consulting firm, filed suit against The Corps Group alleging that The Corps Group impermissibly used jet aviation imagery and military themes in violation of Afterburners trademarks and trade dress. » Read More
Google, Inc.’s announcement of its corporate reorganization and introduction of its new conglomerate holding company Alphabet caught the attention of investors and tech-company enthusiasts around the world. The announcement raised questions about how the new corporate structure would impact Google’s operations and profitability. » Read More
The Eastern District of Virginia issued an order this week upholding the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board’s decision to cancel six trademarks (the “Redskins Marks”) held by Pro-Football, Inc., the owner of the Washington Redskins.
Pro-Football had appealed the Trademark Board’s 2014 decision in which it found that the existing registrations “may disparage” Native Americans. » Read More
Are Plum Organics and Gerber misleading the public about the ingredients in their baby food products? The Center for Science and the Public Interest (“CSPI”) thinks so. CSPI sent letters to Plum Organics (owned by the Campbell Soup Company) and Gerber (owned by Nestlé S.A.) » Read More
The launch of Donald Trump’s presidential campaign this week came with a mistake frequently made by political candidates — using a musician’s song without his or her permission. Trump used Neil Young’s “Rockin’ in the Free World” at his presidential campaign launch without Mr. » Read More
The owner of the Washington Redskins may have found an unlikely ally in Simon Tam. Mr. Tam is the frontman for an Asian-American rockband named the Slants. Mr. Tam’s band sought to register the name of its band as a trademark with the U.S. » Read More
The Supreme Court issued its decision in B&B Hardware, Inc. v. Hargis Industries, Inc. For those readers unfamiliar with this case, we previously discussed it after the Supreme Court heard oral arguments and provide background on the case here.
The Court determined that, provided other general elements of issue preclusion are met, a decision by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) can have preclusive effect if the actual usage of the relevant marks considered by the TTAB, are materially the same as those before a district court. » Read More
Unilever, owner of Hellman’s, challeged Hampton Creek’s egg-free mayo product, “Just Mayo” alleging that the label, which depicts a pea shoot in an egg, falsely suggests to consumers that they are buying mayonnaise, which contains eggs. Hampton Creek replaces eggs with yellow peas in its spread and touts the product as better for your body, wallet and the planet. » Read More