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Trademark

Cohen Law > Trademark (Page 9)

Tommy Burger Trademark Infringement Family Affair

Trademarks are valuable property. Business partners, friends, and even family members can be split over trademark rights. Take the case of Original Tommy’s World Famous Hamburgers here in L.A. When the original Tommy Koulax died in 1992, he left the franchise in the hands of some of his children and relatives. According to an article in today’s Los Angeles Business Journal, one of his children is trying to start up a Tommy’s-inspired company, and apparently breaking some family ties doing it.What made Tommy’s world famous was arguably its chili, not hamburgers. In fact, Tommy’s chili recipe is protected by a...

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Dental Design Patent and Trademark Infringement: Discus v. Biolase

Discus Dental and Zap Lasers, makers of surgical laser instruments, and cofounded by Dr. Dorfman, notable from his ABC’s Extreme Makeover show, filed a complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California against a company called Biolase, which makes an “iLase” cordless medical laser. The claims were made against Biolase after it began to market its iLase product for sale in the U.S. in March.According to the Complaint, the issue involves Discus’ product the Styla, which is a hand-held cordless soft-tissue laser device, U.S. Patent No. D587,803. Discus claims patent infringement of the design of the...

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True Blood Wine Stirring Trademark Trouble

In 2008, HBO created the hit show True Blood, which has since become the most watched show on HBO since the Sopranos. Years before the show, in 2002, TI Beverage Group created True Blood wine, and registered the trademark. TI beverage group must have found it interesting that the HBO program featured a fictional drink called Tru Blood. They weren’t amused, however, when HBO and Hot Topic paired up in 2009 to produce a drink called Tru Blood, based on the show and made from blood oranges. TI’s trademark infringement lawsuit against HBO and Hot Topic was dropped though, after...

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Ebay Trademark Infringment of Tiffany

New York based jeweler Tiffany & Co. have been hard hit by a ruling from last week, in a case against Ebay for trademark infringement. A district appellate court ruled that Ebay “did not engage in trademark infringement, false advertising or trademark dilution.” Apparently, Tiffany conducted research that indicated around 70% of Tiffany’s merchandise on Ebay was fake. This led to the current legal dispute, and Tiffany & Co. wants Ebay to assume responsibility for selling counterfeit merchandise.But Ebay says they’re doing all they reasonably can to deter the sale of counterfeit goods. Selling counterfeit merchandise on Ebay is officially...

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M&M Trademark Infringement with Zorro

From time to time, the Mars candy company teams up with entertainment execs to market M&M’s dressed as iconic Hollywood characters. Apparently, they didn’t team up with Zorro Productions, Inc (“Zorro”). Zorro is suing Mars (and ad agency BBDO Worldwide) in the U.S. District Court of Northern California for trademark infringement, unfair business practices, and dilution under the Lanham Act.Last fall, Mars used the famous masked character in its Halloween advertising, with a “Zorro M&M.” But Zorro, Inc., alleges that the Zorro character is protected under trademark and trade dress law, and that Zorro is famous, whether for movies, costumes,...

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T.I.’s Clothingline Sued by Akoo for Trademark Infringement

Recently, Akoo Clothing, launched by rapper T.I. (real name Clifford Harris, Jr.), received considerable media attention for a sexually explicit billboard in New Jersey that was protested and subsequently taken down. The publicity stunt may have backfired though, as the billboard also got some unwanted attention from Akoo International, a social music television network.Akoo International filed suit for trademark infringement against the clothing label Akoo, stating that they own the registered trademark and have used the name for years. Both parties operate in the music industry, and Akoo International was concerned that consumers could easily confuse the brands.“Our primary obligation...

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GM Trademark Infringement

For years, private manufacturers that made replicas of classic sports cars have been tolerated by the auto industry. They create interest and foster goodwill towards automobile brands by idolizing certain models of cars.But according to an article in the Detroit News, GM is cracking down on one small time replica manufacturer, alleging trademark infringement. GM filed suit against Mongoose Motorsports LLC, an Ohio-based auto parts retailer and part-time manufacturer of the 1963 Corvette Grand Sport. The Grand Sport is one of the rarest and most valuable sports cars ever; only five were built. Mongoose Motorsports sells a replica Grand Sport...

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Trademark Rejection of Khoran Wine

Last week, a panel of five TTAB judges shot down an application for wines bearing the trademark name Khoran. The decision was made based on the trademark’s similarity with the holy text of Islam, the Koran. The panel rejected the application on the basis of disparagement. In re Lebanese Arak Corporation. In previous cases, the board has rejected marks that are belittling to a specific group of people.When filing trademark applications with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, applications can be rejected for a number of reasons, such as likelihood of confusion in view of an earlier filed application,...

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Cybersquatting of New Domain Names

Here’s some interesting news: The likelihood of cybersquatting remains high for .com’s but is much less ICANN’s new domains. According to a recent study by a top-level domain (TLD) consulting firm called Minds+Machines, internet domains other than .com (such as .net, .biz and .info) aren’t currently pursued by cybersquatters. Furthermore, the study suggests that the new assortment of generic top-level domains (gTLD’s), recently created by ICANN will not attract cybersquatters either. These domains include .mobi, .cat, .name, .asia, .pro, .tel and .travel.The study was conducted thusly: Minds+Machines examined domain name registration of more than 1,000 Fortune 100 brands. They reason...

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AMEX Black Card Trademark Infringement

American Express’s Centurion Card, also known as the “black card” has become an iconic status symbol in American pop culture. The card has no limit and a whopping 2,500 annual fee. Introduced in 1999, the card quickly gained attention in books, rap songs, and TV shows. American Express really had a hit on their hands. But they didn’t trademark it. Visa actually owns www.blackcard.com, more recently in mid 2009, granted issuance of a registered trademark for Black Card.Last month, Amex filed a complaint with the New York district court, alleging that Visa has: “perpetrated a scheme to confuse the public and...

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