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10 Jan 0
Social media dog

Social Media & Copyright: Know Your Rights

Every couple of years, we see social media users publishing long posts containing broad declarations of copyright with lots of legalese. We want to shout from the rooftop: STOP!  Those posters are not doing anything to preserve their intellectual property rights. They simply spread misinformation about the nature of copyright in the age of social media. But we know that […]

9 Jan 0

Design Patent Damages: Clear as Mud

When the United States Supreme Court decided Apple v. Samsung on December 6, 2016, some criticized the Court as “bailing out” Samsung, a company that critics know for copycat antics and exploding phones. The decision marked the latest in a series of battles between the two smartphone magnates regarding Samsung’s infringement of several Apple design […]

20 Dec 0
Holiday Holly

Holly Jolly IP Holiday

The weather turned colder, houses glow with lights, and while we may not have all the presents under the tree yet, the holiday parties are in full swing. Idle party chatter of IP lawyers at Christmas time often turns to issues of holiday trademarks and copyrights, so we thought we’d share a few IP holiday […]

19 Dec 0

Flummoxed By Fame – Well-Known Marks & Flanax

The “well-known marks” doctrine (also known as the “famous marks” doctrine), protects a trademark in a country where it has never been used, so long as the mark enjoys fame and renown sufficient to cross borders. We previously discussed the well-known marks principle and the fact that U.S. courts disagree about its application in the United States. Well, thanks […]

13 Dec 0

2016 Virginia Legal Elite Awardee, Antigone Peyton

Well, it’s official. Cloudigy’s Antigone Peyton has been named to the Virginia Legal Elite list for her work in Intellectual Property. Antigone was selected by her professional peers to be included in Virginia Business magazine’s 2016 Legal Elite, which was published in the December issue, and has been named among Virginia’s Legal Elite in prior years. Virginia Business […]

28 Nov 0

Is That Hashtag A #Trademark?

Hastags – a pound sign followed by a word or series of words with no space between – are ubiquitous on social media. People use them to spark and continue conversation about various topics on social media platforms. But can they be trademarked? #Trademark Applications Increasingly, companies are seeking to protect hashtags as trademarks. In 2015, applicants submitted […]

4 Nov 0

Little Pet Shop, Big Right of Publicity Problem

When Hasbro introduced a hamster named “Harris Faulkner” to its “Littlest Pet Shop” line of animal character toys, it drew a multi-million dollar lawsuit from real-life television journalist Harris Faulkner. The complaint, filed in New Jersey, included claims for violation of the right of publicity under New Jersey common law and false advertising and false […]

21 Oct 0

Dilution of Famous Trademarks

Part 1 of this series about famous marks discussed the well-known marks doctrine. This post discusses trademark dilution. Famous Brands and Dilution Owners of famous marks can prevent others from using marks that “dilute” the famous mark under federal law. See 15 U.S.C. § 1125(c). Prior to 1996, trademark owners relied on state laws that may or […]

13 Oct 0
Time Travel and Television

Coming This Fall: A Timely Copyright Dispute

  The fall television season is upon us, with networks busily promoting their new shows in hopes of creating the next lucrative franchise. And new creative endeavors often bring us interesting intellectual property issues. This time, it’s a copyright dispute involving time travel. Ok, not really. But it does involve a show about time travel. […]

4 Oct 0
famous show

Trademark Tools and the Price of “Fame”

Everyone may have his or her fifteen minutes, but there’s always a price to pay for fame. For brand owners, fame brings special challenges as it brings imitators, fans, and social commentary. This is the first in a series of posts about trademark law tools that are specific to famous marks. I recently moderated a […]