• Were the Assignments Valid?

    by  • March 18, 2019 • 1 Comment

    Sometimes a case sends you back to the basics. This was one of those cases for me. Copyright infringement claims against Dollar General appear to be the driving force behind a sequence of assignments of the copyrights for some toys. The relevant chain of title for the copyrights was Acquawood => Focus Brand Limited...

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    Today’s “Who Owns the Trademark” Quiz

    by  • March 11, 2019 • 0 Comments

    The opening sentence: “This case proves once again that people will fight for a catchy name.” My kind of case. Plaintiff Thomas Sköld coined the name “Restoraderm” for a proprietary skin care formulation. (When the court uses the word “coined,” you know it has grasped the difference between a word and a trademark.)  In...

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    The First Amendment and Collective Marks

    by  • March 4, 2019 • 1 Comment

    The government has been trying to seize the MONGOLS trademark for over ten years. You can read my previous posts about it here, here, here and here.  The Mongol Nation, an unincorporated association, owned or owns several registrations for a trademark, service marks and collective membership marks for the word mark MONGOLS, the riding...

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    Who Is Not a Beneficial Owner of Copyright

    by  • February 25, 2019 • 0 Comments

    Six years into the case, we’re on to the third decision on ownership in the case of Roberts v. Gordy and have yet to reach the question of infringement. In the first opinion, the district court held that, although there were three registrations for the infringed work, none was effective and so the court...

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    The Things You Don’t Think Of

    by  • February 18, 2019 • 0 Comments

    We have a story of three firearm and ammunition companies. The parties in the case are DoubleTap Defense, LLC (DTD), a company that had an application to register the trademark DOUBLETAP for pistols, and Hornady Manufacturing Co., owner of several TAP-formative registrations for ammunition. The third company, not a party, is Double Tap Ammunition...

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    The Sexy World of Trademarks in Bankruptcy

    by  • February 11, 2019 • 0 Comments

    I know there are few legal topics sexier than bankruptcy, but we’ve now reached the pinnacle of sexiness – bankruptcy AND trademark. I mean, how much more fulfilled will my life get?! Pending before the Supreme Court and set for hearing on February 20 is Mission Product Holdings, Inc. v. Tempnology, LLC. I wrote...

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    Unauthorized Registration As Material Breach

    by  • January 14, 2019 • 0 Comments

    I just ran across this older opinion upon seeing a more recent opinion in the case on attorneys’ fees. The situation was interesting enough to make me go back and find the earlier decision. Defendant Otkrytoe Aktsionernoe Obshchestvo “Spartak” is a Belarusian company specializing in the production of chocolate. Spartak entered into a non-exclusive...

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    A Service Mark Is Not Always a Trademark

    by  • December 26, 2018 • 0 Comments

    The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey owns the site on which the World Trade Center in New York sits. The original two towers complex was completed in 1973 and included the “Top of the World” observation deck and gift shops, which were operated under a lease with the Port Authority. As...

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    Are These Registrations Valid? The Answer

    by  • December 19, 2018 • 0 Comments

    In my last post I posed questions about the validity of two registrations. If you guessed that both registrations were valid, you were right. The first application was filed and assigned at a time when the entity had been administratively dissolved. DC Bocce claimed that the non-profit still had the capacity to sue and...

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    Are These Registrations Valid? A Quiz

    by  • December 17, 2018 • 0 Comments

    Non-profit DC Bocce League was incorporated in DC in 2004. Its status was revoked in 2007 but it continued to operate through 2010. It filed its formal articles of dissolution on November 4, 2010. The respondent, owner of the challenged registrations, is Major League Bocce, LLC d/b/a DC Bocce League. It is a Delaware...

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    The Agreement At Work

    by  • October 23, 2018 • 0 Comments

    I have a crush on the trademark assignment agreement of the Tavern on the Green mark. It’s a tour de force of drafting. In a nutshell, for decades the City of New York leased the premises for the famous Tavern on the Green to a restauranteur. In 2009 the restauranteur lost its lease, but...

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