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Monkeys Lack Standing to Sue for Copyright Infringement

May 1, 2018 | Blog | By Susan Neuberger Weller

Well, it’s official: Naruto, the crested macaque monkey who took photographs of himself while on a reserve on the island of Sulawesi, Indonesia in 2011, lacks statutory standing under the US Copyright Act to sue for copyright infringement.
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Two incredible things happened in 1992 for the NFL football team Washington Redskins. It won the Super Bowl and applied to register a trademark Washington Redskins. It has not been so lucky ever since. It has not won another Super Bowl and has not registered that mark since 1992.
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When is a Copyright “Registered” for Purposes of Filing Suit?

December 6, 2017 | Blog | By Susan Neuberger Weller

On May 18, 2017, the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals dismissed a copyright infringement complaint and added further to a circuit split on when copyright “registration” occurs for purpose of filing a copyright infringement complaint.
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Company “Branding” and Benefits of Federal Trademark Registration

November 16, 2017 | Blog | By Susan Neuberger Weller

Selecting and protecting your “brand” should begin from the very moment a business is in the process of being formed, whether that business is a sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, limited liability company, or some other type of entity.
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Building a Health App? Part Two: Protecting Your Intellectual Property

September 26, 2017 | Blog | By Christina Sperry

This post is the second in a series of weekly blog posts covering legal issues for consideration during the early stages of development of a health app and providing best practices to help guide you through a successful launch.
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In a unanimous decision handed down on June 19th, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down as unconstitutional a long-standing prohibition against federal registration of “disparaging” trademarks, finding that the this provision of the Lanham Act violates the Free Speech Clause of the First Amendment.
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In a decision that may have broader implications in the U.S. fashion industry, the U.S. Supreme Court in Star Athletica, L.L.C. v. Varsity Brands, Inc. (No. 15-866) ruled that the decorative elements on a cheerleading uniform can fall within the scope of articles protectable by copyright.
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Although most people will recognize the ubiquitous PIZZA! PIZZA! slogan mark owned by the pizza chain Little Caesar’s, the company’s collection of repeated term marks does not rise to the level of a “family of marks” according to the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board.
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U.S. Supreme Court to Hear Arguments on January 18, 2017 in "The Slants" Case.

January 11, 2017 | Blog | By Susan Neuberger Weller

As we reported to you last September, the U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear the case involving the constitutionality of the provisions of the Lanham Act upon which the U.S. Trademark Office relied to deny registration of the rock band name "The Slants."
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In a non-precedential opinion, the U.S. Trademark Trial and Appeal Board cancelled two US trademark registrations for the mark PORTON,  finding it to be confusingly similar to the mark PATRON.
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In June 2016, the National Hockey League (NHL) announced that Las Vegas would be awarded an NHL franchise team, the first major professional sports team in the city and the first new expansion team for the NHL in over fifteen years.
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On November 14, 2016, the Federal Circuit clarified confusion regarding what is necessary to satisfy the registration requirement that a mark be used “in commerce.”
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DJ Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars Get “Funked” With New Copyright Suit Over “Uptown Funk”

November 10, 2016 | Blog | By Brad M Scheller, Daniel Weinger, Anthony Faillaci

On Friday, October 28, 2016, musicians Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars were hit with a copyright infringement suit based on their wildly popular hit “Uptown Funk.”
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Belmora Takes Its FLANAX Headache to the U.S. Supreme Court

October 25, 2016 | Blog | By Susan Neuberger Weller

Well, a lot has happened since we last reported on the District Court's decision in the FLANAX trademark dispute. As you may recall, the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board granted Bayer's Petition and cancelled the FLANAX registration although Bayer, a German company, did not use the mark FLANAX in the US.
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U.S. Supreme Court Denies Redskins' Petition to Join SLANTS Case

October 3, 2016 | Blog | By Susan Neuberger Weller

Further to our post last Friday on the SLANTS trademark case, the U.S. Supreme Court today, without comment, refused the Redskins' Petition to join the SLANTS case challenging the U.S. Trademark Office's ban on "offensive" trademarks.
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The U.S. Supreme Court announced today that it will review whether the U.S. Trademark Office can deny registration of offensive trademarks or whether such prohibition violates the First Amendment.
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IP For Start-Ups: Part V

July 5, 2016 | Blog | By Michael Van Loy

In our fifth "IP for Start-Ups” video, “Copyrights versus Patents to Protect Software Innovations”, Mike discusses the pros and cons of using copyrights or patents to protect your software.
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Dilution Update: NYC BEER Is Not Diluted, But The Empire State Building Is

June 30, 2016 | Blog | By Susan Neuberger Weller

Trademark dilution is a concept not easily understood. Although, we have written about this topic in previous posts, a recent decision by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board, ESRT Empire State Building, L. L. C. v. Michael Liang, Opposition No. 91204122 (TTAB June 17, 2016),  may help to further explain why it is unacceptable to dilute another’s trademark.
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DICKMAN'S Pickles: Just Another Unregistrable Surname

June 29, 2016 | Blog | By Susan Neuberger Weller

The US Trademark Trial and Appeal Board has, again, explained how and when surnames may function as trademarks.
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MAYA And MAYARI Are Not Confusingly Similar When Used On Wine

June 28, 2016 | Blog | By Susan Neuberger Weller

The Federal Circuit has upheld the findings of the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board that use of the marks MAYA and MAYARI on wine is not likely to cause confusion.
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