Posts Tagged: trademark law


Supreme Court Ruling Opens Door to Additional Constitutional Challenges to the Lanham Act

The Supreme Court ruled that the anti-disparagement clause in the Lanham Act violates the Free Speech Clause in the First Amendment. Matal v. Tam. As a result, …
By Damian R LaPlaca
20 days ago 0

Supreme Court Rocks the Trademark Office in ‘Slants’ Case

After a streak of six patent decisions uniformly overruling the Federal Circuit, and for the first time all term, the Supreme Court finally handed the Federal Circuit …

Frankly My Dear I Don’t Give a Tam: The Oddball Consequences of In re Tam

The Supreme Court heard oral argument on the cloudy Wednesday morning of January 18, 2017. Although the Justices posed tough questions and intricate hypotheticals to both sides, the tone …

Almost Famous: Many Trademark Owners Find Dilution Claims Out of Reach

In a dilution claim, a trademark owner asserts that their famous mark is entitled to protection from use that causes harm to the mark’s reputation or …
By Eric Ball & Carly Bittman
7 months ago 0

ABA files amicus brief in Lee v. Tam to correct errors in trademark law made by Federal Circuit

In the brief, the ABA takes no official opinion on whether the disparagement provisions of the Lanham Act are invalid in the face of constitutionally-protected free speech. …
By Steve Brachmann
8 months ago 3

‘The Walking Dead’ production company brings trademark suit against Atlanta-area movie studio

Although the studio construction itself seems to be carrying on apace, Valhalla Studios has gotten itself into legal trouble over its chosen name. On October 19th, the …
By Steve Brachmann
9 months ago 0

Trademarks: A basic primer on trademarks and trademark law

Trademarks differ from copyrights, which protect original artistic or literary works, and patents, which protect inventions. A trademark primarily protects names, logos or symbols that identify a …
By Gene Quinn
9 months ago 0

Supreme Court to decide if disparagement provision in the Lanham Act is invalid under the First Amendment?

Based on the question presented in Lee v. Tam, the Supreme Court made clear that its grant of review is only as to the disparagement provision in …
By Eric Ball & Moira Lion
10 months ago 0

Arch-conservative political pundit obtains “Media Malpractice” trademark

William J. Kelly and his television production company RevDigital had secured the trademark rights to “media malpractice.” U.S. Trademark Registration No. 5027942 was issued as a standard …
By Steve Brachmann
10 months ago 0

Lex Machina trademark litigation report shows heavy enforcement activity for luxury fashion and bong brands

When looking at damages awarded in trademark infringement cases filed since 2005 and terminating between 2009 and 2016, fashion brands have taken in the highest award totals. The top spot …
By Steve Brachmann
1 year ago 0

Offensive Trademark Applications Suspended by USPTO Until Supremes Rule on In re Tam

In anticipation of Supreme Court review of Tam, the Commissioner has issued an informal directive to trademark examiners that any application for a mark that is potentially …
By Ronald Abrams
1 year ago 11

Statute Barring Registration of Disparaging Trademarks Upended

Tam appealed to the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (the “Board”), but the Board affirmed the Trademark Examiner’s refusal to register the mark. The Board found …

Napa Valley Vintners first wine group in US to receive certification mark registration

Earlier this month, Napa Valley Vintners (NVV), the nonprofit trade association that works to “promote, protect and enhance the Napa Valley appellation,” became the first wine group …
By Brian Focarino
2 years ago 2

Unconstitutional – CAFC Rules PTO Cannot Deny Registration for Disparaging Trademarks

Yesterday the Federal Circuit in an en banc decision held that the portion of Section 2(a) of the Trademark Act, which bars federal registration for trademarks that …
By Brian Focarino
2 years ago 4

Only ‘Expenses’ Not ‘Attorney Fees’ Should Be Awarded Under Section 21(b) of the Lanham Act

Section 1071(b)(3) does not expressly or implicitly permit the award of “attorney fees” to the PTO. Specifically, Section 1071(b)(3) states simply that all the expenses of the …