What is a Trademark?

Registered trademark symbol in gold

The 1946 Lanham Act defines a trademark under the term “trade-mark.” A trademark includes any word, name, symbol, or device or any combination thereof adopted and used by a manufacturer or merchant to identify his goods and distinguish them from those manufactured or sold by others. Today, a mark is considered a trademark in many jurisdictions if it…

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Combination surname trademarks

The analysis of a combination surname trademark requires two inquires. First, is the term added to the surname “merely descriptive” of the applicant’s goods and services? In re Hutchinson Technology, Inc., 852 F.2d 552 (Fed. Cir. 1988). Specifically, is “collection” merely descriptive of KEI’s goods and services? Second, did adding the additional term to the…

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Armani UDRP Decision and Analysis

The failed Armani UDRP complaint regarding armani.com is an example where legitimate interests exist in an otherwise famous brand name. Armani UDRP Complaint Summary The UDRP panel found that the then owner of armani.com, Mr. Anand Ramnath Mani, had a legitimate interest in armani.com because  the domain name because his initials were A.R. and his last…

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MAD MEN Barbershop Trademark Opposition

MAD MEN Barbershop trademark

Lions Gate Entertainment filed an opposition to the MAD MEN Barbershop trademark in the USPTO’s TTAB. Opposition No. 91234230 Trademark Serial No. 87/110,436 For: MADMEN BARBERSHOP & Design Publication Date: December 27, 2016 NOTICE OF OPPOSITION Commissioner for Trademarks ATTN: Trademark Trial and Appeal Board P.O. Box 1451 Alexandria, Virginia 22313-1451   Dear Commissioner: Opposer, Lions…

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Fraud on the PTO bars claim

Fraud on the PTO will bar claims for trademark infringement. In a 2016 decision between Amusement Art v Life is Beautiful LCC, a Federal District Court in California affirmed the principle that Fraud on the PTO will bar claims for trademark infringement: Between 2011 and 2012, Amusement Art filed eight ITUs for “Life is Beautiful” covering…

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Legal Writing Resources

Legal writing is very different than novel writing. In legal writing, the goal is to clearly and persuasively communicate points of fact and law in as few words as possible. Judges and clerks are busy, so they don’t have all day to figure out what are your arguments. @BryanAGarner is an appellate lawyer that writes a…

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Generic Trademark

A generic trademark is never entitled to trademark protection if it the generic name of goods or services on or in connection with which it has been used. A generic term can never become a trademark. “[N]o matter how much money and effort the user of a generic term has poured into promoting the sale…

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Nominative Fair Use Lanham Act

Nominative fair use is a legal doctrine that provides an affirmative defense to trademark infringement as enunciated by the United States Ninth Circuit, by which a person may use the trademark of another as a reference to describe the other product, or to compare it to their own. Nominative use may be considered to be either…

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iCloud.com sold for $4.5 Million

iCloud login screen: icloud.com home page screenshot 2017 June 26

iCloud.com is a cloud hosting service for Apple iPhone and Mac customers. You may sign in to iCloud to access your photos, videos, documents, notes, contacts, and more. Use your Apple ID or create a new account to start using Apple services. iCloud Trademark Applications Xcerion AB first applied to register ICLOUD on Aug. 14,…

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