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29 September 2009

Leading US judge outlines challenges for the trademark industry

The Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit plays a key role in the development of US IP law. In an exclusive interview with WTR, the court's chief judge, Paul Michel, suggests that it could do even more. He argues that the time may have come to consider centralizing all IP cases at the Federal Circuit and also recommends a number of other crucial reforms to the US trademark protection system.

23 September 2009

Hallmark demands rehearing in Paris Hilton publicity rights dispute

Hallmark Inc has petitioned the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit for an en banc rehearing in a case that sets the greeting card company's First Amendment rights against Paris Hilton's right to her own image.

22 September 2009

Side-by-side comparison is not correct way to judge similarity, says court

In Xtreme Lashes LLC v Xtended Beauty Inc, the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit has reversed the district court’s grant of summary judgment to defendant Xtended Beauty Inc on plaintiff Xtreme Lashes LLC's infringement claims. The Fifth Circuit also held that the district court had erred in ordering the cancellation of Xtreme’s EXTEND YOUR BEAUTY mark.

16 September 2009

Service of opposition to applicant's business address acceptable, says TTAB

In Chocoladefabriken Lindt & Sprungli AG v Flores, in a precedential opinion, the TTAB has considered whether Chocoladefabriken Lindt & Sprungli AG's failure to serve its notice of opposition on the applicant at his 'correspondence address of record', as set forth in Trademark Rule 2.101, nullified the opposition.

16 September 2009

REDSKINS Case goes to US Supreme Court

The long-running dispute over the use of the name and mark REDSKINS by a National Football League franchise based in Washington DC has reached the Supreme Court.

09 September 2009

Federal Circuit resoundingly rejects Medinol fraud standard

After six years of uncertainty as to the susceptibility of trademark registrations to a claim of fraud, the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has reaffirmed unequivocally its pre-Medinol fraud standard, holding that “a trademark [registration] is obtained fraudulently under the Lanham Act only if the applicant or registrant knowingly makes a false, material representation with the intent to deceive the [USPTO]”.

07 September 2009

Order recalling potentially infringing goods requires extra burden of proof

In Marlyn Nutraceuticals Inc v Mucos Pharma GmbH & Co, the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has affirmed the issuance of a preliminary injunction that halted the defendant’s sale of a dietary supplement, but vacated the district court's decision insofar as it required product recall and restitution. The Ninth Circuit found that the record did not establish that the infringing product caused a substantial risk of danger to the public.

03 September 2009

Trademark 'squatter' enjoined from using JAPONAIS mark

In Tuccillo v Geisha NYC LLC, the US District Court for the Eastern District of New York has granted the defendant and counterclaimant a preliminary injunction enjoining the plaintiff from making any further use of the trademark JAPONAIS in New York, Chicago or Las Vegas pending the final outcome of the action.

02 September 2009

LVMH victorious in $32.4 million award against web host

The LVMH group has won $32.4 million in damages in its lawsuit filed in 2007 against internet hosting companies Akanoc Solutions and Managed Solutions Group.

02 September 2009

Adding '.com' to generic term does not make it registrable, says court

In In re LP, the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has held that the TTAB had properly rejected an application for the registration of the trademark HOTELS.COM on the grounds that it was generic. Among other things, the court held that adding '.com' did not make the generic term 'hotels' distinctive.

02 September 2009

Twitter's TWEET registration fails at first hurdle

An application by social networking website Twitter to register a trademark for the term TWEET has been preliminarily refused by the US Patent and Trademark Office. Twitter had applied to register the mark in Classes 38, 41 and 45 of the Nice Classification.

01 September 2009

New USPTO director confirmed

David Kappos has been confirmed as the new director of the US Patent and Trademark Office.

30 July 2009

Use of Jimi Hendrix's signature constitutes trademark infringement, says court

In Experience Hendrix LLC v Ltd, the US District Court for the Western District of Washington has granted, in part, a motion for a preliminary injunction against Ltd’s use of Jimi Hendrix's signature on its products. The court denied the motion in part with regard to the use of the registered marks HENDRIX and JIMI HENDRIX, independent of the signature, as nominative fair use.

29 July 2009

Speaking out: why brand owners must drive IP policy

The US government's appointment of its first IP enforcement coordinator has been severely delayed, but big business is nonetheless preparing to work more closely with government once the post is filled. WTR learns how brand owners need to manoeuvre themselves in the public arena if they are to drive understanding of intellectual property - in both the market and the White House.

29 July 2009

Kappos closing in on USPTO appointment

The man nominated by the US Secretary of Commerce to be the new director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office today faces the Senate Judiciary Committee, which will later officially report David Kappos's nomination to the full senate for approval.