Blog results - found 54
The USPTO has confirmed to World Trademark Review that it is considering suspending trademark applications that would previously be refused as disparaging as it awaits the Supreme Court review of In re Tam. In light of the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit decision in December, which ruled that the prohibition on disparaging marks is unconstitutional, a US resident has also revealed he is interested in re-applying for a trademark that was previously refused on those grounds in 2013.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation has sent a letter to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints that claims the term MORMON is “generic” due to it being the only way to describe people who follow or are part of that religious community. If one trademark of a religious organisation is being accused of genericism, other similar religious marks, such as SCIENTOLOGIST, could also be at risk.
A US law professor has told World Trademark Review that the abolition of state trademark registrations in the United States would “clarify the legal landscape for trademark acquisition and enforcement”. Additional research reveals that demand for US state trademarks is trending downwards. However, imminent change seems unlikely.
A parody artist who has been entangled in a number of high-profile cybersquatting cases has told World Trademark Review that the “scare tactics” utilised by brand owners against alleged domain-squatters should not be the default option, noting that he has responded more positively to ‘polite’ approaches.
As the poll numbers of Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump continue to rise, so too do the number of trademark filings using his name. Trump’s lawyer has confirmed to World Trademark Review that there has been a recent uptick in infringement, but reveals they are adopting an “aggressive” stance - whether it is to those infringers with a negative intent or to genuine Trump supporters.
It was no surprise last week when trademark applications were filed in the US related to Cecil, the lion killed by dentist and big-game hunter Walter Palmer in Zimbabwe. However, one of the applicants has told World Trademark Review that he is not cashing in on a tragedy, but that his intentions are good, and that he plans to stop third parties marketing products capitalising on the famous lion.
A growing number of large casino companies are threatening small video game developers with legal action over alleged trademark infringement, a New York lawyer has told World Trademark Review. Ryan Morrison, who runs a firm that specialises in representing independent games companies, claims this has been caused by a trademark classification system that is not keeping pace with the development of new technology.
It was 10 years ago last month that Apple updated its iTunes software to support podcasts natively. Today, up to 75 million people a month listen to podcasts on iTunes, with the advertising revenue generated by the medium also on the rise. However, despite swift growth, the sector appears to be lagging behind in terms of brand protection and registered trademark rights.
When a trademark owner is perceived to act in a heavy-handed way, any resulting backlash is reported with relish by the mainstream media. However, the reverse rarely gets the coverage it deserves. This week, US production company Funimation directly engaged with the fan art community in a bid to explain how and why it has to police its marks. Its message was broadly welcomed by its target audience, many of whom have become allies in spreading the message.
The availability of online tools that make trademark filings accessible to all are, in most respects, a positive development. However, the flipside is that such offerings can result in applicants investing in the process without fully understanding trademark law or first seeking specialist help. This appears to be the case with the self-proclaimed 'Trademark King', who has spent up to $50,000 in trademark filings that one commentator has labelled “void from the outset”.
An analyst report into online marketplace Etsy has issued a stark warning about the large proportion of potentially infringing items being sold on the site, causing the company’s stock to plummet. While sending a clear signal to trademark counsel that they need to ensure the platform is in their policing plans, the positive takeaway is the hesitancy investors exhibit when faced with sites that sell allegedly infringing items.
The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit is to consider whether the federal government’s treatment of ‘disparaging’ marks violates the First Amendment. The move, issued as the court vacated last week’s decision on the rejection of a trademark application by Asian American band The Slants, has been labelled a “shock” by the band’s attorney.
The founder of the Asian American dance-rock band behind the application has slammed this week's appeal decision, telling World Trademark Review that he finds the USPTO's treatment of evidence “absurd”.
With the legalisation of marijuana gaining momentum across the United States, a new multi-billion dollar industry is growing at a startling rate. Nonetheless, there are strict restrictions on the registration of trademarks for marijuana products at national level, meaning that companies in this sector are struggling to protect their brands.
That the family of a Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting victim has had to resort to applying for a trademark in a bid to deter online harassment is a sad sign of the times. However, in this instance, it is doubtful that trademark law will provide the solution they are seeking, with one commentator calling for more to be done to help those affected.
Reports that Red Bull is challenging family-run Old Ox Brewery for violating its trademark have gone near-viral, with the reporting often focused on just one half of the story.
A number of media reports in recent weeks have slammed NFL club the Seattle Seahawks for its ‘aggressive’ trademark strategy. Research conducted by World Trademark Review indicates that, while the team is indeed top of the trademark pile in the NFL, the number and type of trademarks it is filing is not significantly ahead of its rivals, despite media coverage suggesting otherwise.
A federal complaint filed by an app developer against Google focuses on the whack-a-mole phenomenon as it relates to trademark infringement in the app store environment. The attorney representing the app developer tells World Trademark Review that more needs to be done when operators are aware of repeated trademark infringements.
Cristiano Ronaldo to Juventus, LeBron James to LA Lakers: the brand perspective on major sporting moves
The last week has seen two of the biggest sporting moves in history, with NBA legend LeBron James joining the LA Lakers and football superstar Cristiano Ronaldo heading to Italian club Juventus. Reports on both moves have focused on the massive money involved in the deals, but experts say that the power of the players’ brands will justify the big dollars being spent by the respective teams.
Justice Anthony Kennedy of the US Supreme Court announced his imminent retirement on Wednesday, meaning that US President Donald Trump will now have a second opportunity to nominate a justice. With the prospect of a more right-thinking Supreme Court bench, leading IP attorneys are split over what it means for trademark cases.
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