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Posts Tagged: "national football league"

Stan Honey, Inventor of the 1st & 10 Yellow Line First Down Marker

Stan Honey’s advances in sports graphics technology are outlined in the patent for which he was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame. U.S. Patent No. 6141060, titled Method and Apparatus for Adding a Graphic Indication of a First Down to a Live Video of a Football Game, issued October 31st, 2000, covers a method for adding a graphic indication of a first down to a live video of a football game by receiving an indication of a location on a football field corresponding to said first down, sensing first field of view data using field of view sensors that don’t use pattern recognition, determining a first position in the live video corresponding to the first down location at a first time, creating a first graphic of a line in real time for the live video and adding the first graphic to the live video based on the first position.

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, the United States Patent and Trademark Office may no longer deny registration of a federal trademark application on the ground of disparagement. Several states, including Massachusetts and New Hampshire, have anti-disparagement trademark provisions that will no longer be enforceable either… The statute does not define ‘scandalous’, but like the restriction against disparaging marks, the courts and the PTO focus on whether a mark is offensive.

Industry Reaction to SCOTUS First Amendment Decision in Matal v. Tam

Lauren Emerson, Baker Botts, LLP: “Today’s decision, while not surprising, is momentous, as any decision striking a longstanding legislative provision based on freedom of speech would be.  From a trademark practitioner’s perspective, Matal v. Tam is also remarkable in that it is the second decision in just over two years in which the Supreme Court specifically has taken note of the importance and value of trademark registration.   The decision has drawn additional attention as it undoubtedly marks the end of Pro-Football, Inc. (“PFI”)’s longstanding battle over its REDSKINS marks, as 2(a) will no longer bar registration of those marks either.   I have little doubt that in the weeks and months to come, we will see many new filings that will be more challenging to celebrate than Simon Tam’s hard-won victory.”

Other Barks & Bites for Wednesday, February 15th, 2017

On the menu this week for Other Barks & Bites… Video game systems developed by Nintendo and Sony are targeted in a patent infringement suit filed in Delaware federal court. The infamous scan-to-email patent giving rise to the patent troll debate has finally been invalidated at the Federal Circuit. A multi-billion dollar copyright suits between two American tech giants gets new life from Oracle. California’s state legislature moves to create trademark protections for marijuana products at the state level, circumventing federal restrictions on such trademarks. And Zillow gets hit with a copyright infringement verdict.

New England Patriots earn trademarks to promote a 19-0 perfect season that never was

On December 6th, 2016, the USPTO registered U.S. Trademark Registration No. 5095619, which protects the use of the standard character mark “PERFECT SEASON” in commerce. One week later on December 13th, the USPTO registered U.S. Trademark Registration No. 5100521, which protects the use of the standard character mark “19-0” in commerce… And trademarks only exist so long as they remain in use, so to keep the 19-0 registration the Patriots will have to use it in commerce or risk it going abandoned. So it will be interesting to see how the Patriots continue to use 19-0, or if they continue to use 19-0.

Cowboys’ Prescott and Elliott in hunt for the Super Bowl and U.S. trademark registration

Not only are these two young men rising NFL stars who look as though they will have very promising careers; they’re also intellectual property owners. An Associated Press report published last August identified both Dak and Zeke as among a growing group of young sports professionals who have applied for trademark registration of character marks involving their names or nicknames. Prescott is still currently in the process of obtaining a trademark from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for U.S. Trademark Serial No. 86467076. This application seeks to register a standard character mark for “DAK ATTACK” in two classes, trademark class 25 for clothing and trademark class 41 for education and entertainment services.

Counterfeit NFL jerseys highlight issues of fake apparel from China

Misspellings, $20 for a $200 jersey, encouraging use of Western Union wire transfers, and no visible mention of being officially licensed NFL merchandise should raise at least some suspicions… Chinese production of counterfeit NFL jerseys and other sports apparel has also attracted the attention of domestic crime rings looking to make money from unsuspecting consumers, many of whom are purchasing a low-quality product compared to the officially licensed version.

Oakland Raiders file three trademark applications suggesting potential Las Vegas relocation

On August 20th, the Oakland Raiders filed three trademark applications with the USPTO for standard character marks on “Las Vegas Raiders,” suggesting the team is very serious about relocating to Las Vegas in the near future. U.S. Trademark Application No. 87145341 would protect the use of Las Vegas Raiders on football helmets, downloadable software and electronic guides related to football, jewelry, trading cards and other souvenir items. U.S. Trademark Application No. 87145339 would protect the use of Las Vegas Raiders for the conducting of professional football games, football fan club services, sports and entertainment information provided via cable or satellite as well as live shows featuring football competitions. U.S. Trademark Application No. 87145331 would protect the use of Las Vegas Raiders on a variety of clothing items, including jerseys, caps, visors, earmuffs, T-shirts, sweaters, gloves and scarves.

How head impacts challenge the NFL to improve helmet innovation

The harder and more unbreakable the helmet the better it is to protect from a cosmetic standpoint, but the more likely the helmet will transfer the power of any blow through to the brain… Helmets today are reasonably good at protecting from blunt impact, but that does not mean they do not suffer from serious problems. “A major weakness in helmets is that they do not protect from any twisting or torsion motion, for example when a wearer suffers an impact that forces his neck to rotate at a substantial speed,” Abu-Taleb explains. “This is a major cause of concussions, as the brain rattles within the cerebrospinal fluid inside the skull as soon as the rotating comes to a stop, causing multiple potential points of impact between the brain and skull.”

Bad News for the Redskins Trademark – Registration Exempt from First Amendment Scrutiny

Last Wednesday the Eastern District of Virginia issued its opinion and order on cross-motions for summary judgment in Pro-Football v. Blackhorse, the case in which the National Football League (NFL) appealed the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board’s (TTAB) precedential cancellation of the REDSKINS trademark on Lanham Act 2(a) disparagement grounds. The long and short of it is, it didn’t turn out well for the Redskins, who will almost certainly appeal the decision, which affirmed the TTAB’s 2014 cancellation.

Seattle Football and The Twelfth Man Trademark

As part of the settlement agreement, Seattle can use the number 12, and whatever rendition of 12 it wishes, so long as it sufficiently distinguishes whatever mark it comes up with from “12th MAN”. They can use “12th MAN” in advertising and promotional items provided proper notice is used but they may not, however, use “12th MAN” on merchandise, including the flag. Ever notice that the “12th Man Flag” at CenturyLink Field is just the number 12? Now you know why. The Seahawks can refer to it as the “12th Man” flag, but can’t put the word “man” anywhere near the number 12.

Concussion Science, Stagnant Helmet Innovation and the NFL

Much of the science behind how concussions are sustained is still underdeveloped, but rotational forces created on the brain when a body sustains an off-center hit may be to blame. Helmet safety standards enforced by the National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment have been largely unchanged since the early 1970s and typically only measures linear forces created in a straight impact. The helmet industry has been pretty stagnant for decades, but the new push for better protections against concussions has been driving innovation within the industry over the past few years.

Follow Friday: IP Tweeters You Should Follow on Twitter

If you are a user of Twitter you have probably seen more than a few tweets using “#FF” followed by a number of names. #FF stands for “Follow Friday.” On Fridays many Twitter users will suggest who others should follow by tweeting with the hashtag #FF. If this is gobbledygook to you where have you been? Twitter is a great way to stay up to day with news and information from the sources that you like the most. You need to get on the Twitter bandwagon and give it a try!

NFL Players vs. Owners: A Hail Mary of a Lawsuit

About 10 years ago, the NFLP decided that they wanted Reebok (and only Reebok) to make hats with the teams’ logos on them. American Needle, Inc., a competitor of Reebok, had been making these types of hats for the NFL for a really long time, and as a result of the NFLP’s deal with Reebok, it lost its contract with NFLP to make said hats. American Needle, Inc. did not have much of a sense of humor about this and sued the NFL under Antitrust principles. Enter American Needle v. National Football League et al. Needle is a big case because if the NFL had gotten what it asked for, the player’s union wouldn’t have been able to decertify and the players wouldn’t have been able to bring an antitrust suit.

The Wait Continues: Another Day Without a Bilski Decision

After 6 months and 15 days we still wait for a decision in Bilski v. Kappos, perhaps the most anticipated Supreme Court patent decision of all time. So, once again, it seems as if the patent story of the day will be the one that never materialized. The difficulty the Supreme Court is facing is in all likelihood this: how do they kill the Bilski patent application as being unpatentable subject matter without also killing the US economy. A decision that is too broad not only could put an end to the pure business methods akin to the Bilski “invention,” but could also put an end to the patentability of software, business methods and medical innovations. Thus, it is hardly an overstatement to observe that the Bilski case, if decided improperly, could destroy an already fragile US economy and set back medical research decades.