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08 November 2016

How domain squatters targeted candidates during the 2016 US election

New research from The Coalition Against Domain Name Abuse has revealed the extent of identity squatting targeting this year’s presidential election candidates, as well as members of the US Congress and Senate.

04 November 2016

What a Clinton or Trump presidency could mean for US trademark owners

The US electorate is about to head to the polls to vote in the next president. The race has tightened in recent days and both the Republican and Democratic candidates appear to have a realistic path to victory. As election fever peaks, World Trademark Review asks IP experts how a President Hillary Clinton or a President Donald Trump could shape the trademark landscape in the years to come.

29 September 2016

New study reveals the US states and industries where trademark activity is most intense

The USPTO and Economics & Statistics Administration have released a follow-up to the ground-breaking 2012 study into the economic contribution made by intellectual property to the US economy. The 59-page report also identifies the regions and industries where trademark intensity resides.

06 July 2016

Anti-SLAPP law causes dismissal of unfair business claims

Petitioners seeking to cancel a trademark may avail themselves of the protections of the anti-SLAPP (strategic lawsuit against public participation) law against unfair business practice and tortious interference with business relations claims even if their petition to cancel and related activities are motived by personal economic concerns.

01 July 2016

The pressure of rising demand

Trademark applications at the USPTO increased by 10.7% in fiscal year 2015. As the office grapples with this expanding workload, we conducted a survey to gauge user sentiment on its operations and explore some of the trends and issues that are defining the US filing landscape

28 June 2016

USPTO reveals ambitious plans to tackle register clutter

The USPTO is seeking comment on plans to conduct random audits on specimens of use in a bid to improve the accuracy and integrity of the trademark register. The move will be welcomed by practitioners, although effective execution will be all-important.

27 May 2016

Timing of the mark-fame inquiry under US dilution statute

The federal Lanham Act protects the distinctiveness of a famous mark against likely dilution, but the statute’s protection is available only against a defendant which began using the mark after the plaintiff’s mark had become famous. A hard line has historically been given towards this requirement, but this was taken one step further in Omega SA (Omega AG) (Omega Ltd) v Alpha Phi Omega.

17 May 2016

Trademark battle over Bear Bryant’s houndstooth hat

In an unusual clash between a federal judge and the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB), the question was: if the parties to a trademark registration dispute settle while the case is on appeal to a federal district court, must the TTAB obey the court’s order to vacate its precedential decision?

21 April 2016

USPTO makes next move in high-profile battle over disparaging marks

The USPTO has filed a petition for a writ of certiorari to review the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit decision in In re Tam, asking the Supreme Court to answer the question of whether the disparagement provision in Section 2 of the Lanham Act is facially invalid under the free speech clause of the First Amendment. The move means that the battle over the registration of disparaging marks is nearing its end.

19 April 2016

US IP case should remain in the United States

The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has held that a US rights and infringement case should be heard in the United States as there was insufficient evidence that an alternative foreign jurisdiction could provide an adequate remedy.

15 March 2016

Bacardi ramps up HAVANA CLUB battle, in court and through the media

In January we noted that the resumption of legal proceedings would make the US federal district court the key battleground for control of the Havana Club brand in the US. This week Bacardi filed an amended complaint, asking for the removal of the HAVANA CLUB mark from the register.

11 March 2016

Applicant of 'disparaging' CHINK PROUD mark plans to re-apply following In re Tam decision

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.

08 March 2016

New legislation enhances US Customs and Border Protection’s enforcement of IP rights

The Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act 2015 contains provisions strengthening trademark and copyright enforcement mechanisms and creates a new agency called the National Intellectual Property Rights Coordination Centre.

12 February 2016

Politics and trademark law collide as congressional hearing focuses on Havana Club dispute

In our previous coverage of the dispute over the Havana Club brand, we noted that the resumption of legal proceedings would make the US Federal District Court the key battleground. However, following a combative US House of Representatives hearing on confiscated property in Cuba, it is clear that it remains a hot-button issue in political circles.