• Archive for May, 2009


    by  • May 30, 2009 • copyright, trademark

    It’s still hot and heavy in the Bratz litigation. There are these enticing entries on the district court docket: 05/18/2009 5510 PHASE 2 DISCOVERY MATTER – ORDER NO. 34 filed by Special Master Robert C O’Brien Regarding Motion to Compel Production of Hard Drives from Computers Used by Isaac Larian after February 27, 2008...

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    Shades of Spam Arrest

    by  • May 29, 2009 • trademark

    Here’s an interesting story on the derivation of the word “tabloid” for a newspaper. It’s a trademark registered in the United Kingdom in 1884 for compressed medicines, a portmanteau of “tablet” and “ovoid.” The use of the mark was later expanded to tea, first aid kits, snake bite kits, photographic chemicals, and other goods....

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    Cut Your Losses

    by  • May 28, 2009 • copyright

    The Exclusive Rights blog reports on a case from the Supreme Court of Indiana, where one company hired another to design and host its web site. An often-told story; the hiring company stopped paying the bills and the designing company shut down the web site, then sued on the bill. In response, the defendant...

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    An Assignment of the Contract, Not the Patent

    by  • May 24, 2009 • patent

    Applera Corp. v. MP Biomedicals, LLC is an infrequent occurrence, a patent-related case in state court. In the case, the two original contracting parties entered into a royalty-bearing patent license for the PCR (polymerase chain reaction) process for amplification of DNA. The license included terms for ascertaining royalties based on whether the products would...

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    It’s Only One Mark

    by  • May 17, 2009 • trademark

    Sometimes the TTAB is an alternative reality. It’s happening right now as it struggles with trademark ownership disputes. In Arturo Santana Gallego v. Santana’s Grill, Inc., there was family falling out. The TTAB reached a conclusion that may be right, but in a way that is so doctrinally irrelevant that we can’t know. The...

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    MGA Smackdown

    by  • May 15, 2009 • copyright, trademark

    MGA Entertainment has asked for, and was granted, an expedited hearing for a stay of the injunction pending its appeal to the Ninth Circuit. The hearing will be May 18. In expected fashion, MGA couldn’t pass up an opportunity for a smackdown in its press release: Mattel’s iteration of the brand will necessarily bear...

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    Automatic Assignment or Agreement to Assign?

    by  • May 11, 2009 • patent

    Patent numbers 5,138,459, 6,094,219, 6,233,010 and 6,323,899 had three named inventors, Marc Roberts, Matthew Chikosky and Jerry Speasl. They invented the subject matter of the patents while working for Mirage Systems, Inc., then formed their own company, Personal Computer Cameras, Inc. St. Clair Intellectual Properties invested in the company, and when Personal Computer Cameras...

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    by  • May 7, 2009 • Uncategorized

    Intellectual property law is generally considered a scheme for the protection of non-rivalrous, non-excludeable goods. In other words, because an idea once disclosed can be used by all, laws are needed to provide exclusivity so that the inventor can capture some reward for his or her work. Jefferson: “Society may give an exclusive right...

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