Monthly Archives: December 2014

Congratulating Michael Jordan in a Sports Illustrated Ad Earned a Business a Lawsuit from the Celebrity

When celebrities receive awards or reach professional milestones, businesses often run congratulatory advertisements that both salute the celebrity and promote their brand.  While those seem to be supporting the celebrity, celebrities have initiated legal action for misappropriation and unauthorized use … Continue reading

Posted in Trademark, Uncategorized, What's New in IP | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Whenever Working With Outsiders and Your Proprietary Technology, Don’t Forget About Technology Improvements

Whenever a business (or independent inventor) enters into any type of agreement concerning access to its proprietary, patented, patent pending, or trade secret technology, it is important that the agreement addresses potential improvements to your technology that may be created … Continue reading

Posted in Copyright, Enforcement, Licensing, Patent, Trademark, Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment

New Balance v. Karl Lagerfeld

New Balance sells popular sneakers with a large “N” as part of the sneaker “saddle” design.  Karl Lagerfeld introduced a sneaker design with a large “K” in a similar location on its footwear.  New Balance alleges his sneaker design dilutes … Continue reading

Posted in Enforcement, Trademark | Tagged | Leave a comment

Courts Repeatedly Confirm That T-Shirt Slogans Are Not Copyrightable, but May Be Trademarked

I’m not sure what I like better – reading T-shirts or funny cards.  I’m the one laughing out loud so everyone wonders, “What could possibly be so funny?”  As much as I love those great T-shirt designs and slogans, I … Continue reading

Posted in Copyright, Trademark | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Converse Alleges Trademark Infringements by Other Footwear Manufacturers and Retailers

Converse alleges its design is protectable trade dress, specifically its middle design and outsole design.  The midsole design has a bumper and a toe cap plus an upper and/or lower strip.  The outsole design is a distinctive diamond pattern. Converse’s … Continue reading

Posted in Enforcement, Trademark | Tagged | Leave a comment

Defending an Opposition to Your Intent to Use Mark

One basis for opposing intent to use trademark applications is to show lack of a bona fide intent to use the mark at the time the application was filed.  Defending against these claims requires documentation of actual intent to use … Continue reading

Posted in Enforcement, Trademark | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Famous Names Can Lead to Trademark Problems

If you share a name with a famous mark, you may be restricted in the use of your own name.  It is especially important to refrain from creating associations with the well-recognized brand.  Estates of the celebrity or iconic brand … Continue reading

Posted in Enforcement, Trademark | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Trade Secret Theft Claims

New York law creates civil liability for “misappropriation” of someone else’s trade secret(s). New York’s criminal larceny statute may also impose criminal liability for stealing trade secrets. An action for misappropriation must be brought within 3 years after the misappropriation … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment