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Copyright Law Intellectual Property Restaurant and Hospitality Law Trademark Law

To the Cronut Come the Trolls!

In May of this year, Chef Dominique Ansel of Dominque Ansel Bakery in Manhattan, came up with a new product that combined the laminated dough of a croissant with the shape and sweetness of a donut. He came up with and trademarked a catchy name for the item: The Cronut. Like so many things in […]

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Constitutional Law Copyright Law Fashion Law Intellectual Property Litigation Trademark Law

Fed. Appeals Court Rules: “Life is Good” May Have Copied Penmen Designs But it Did Not Infringe

Life is indeed good for the Jacobs brothers who started the Boston MA based apparel company “Life is Good.” Not only did they turn their T-Shirt company into a $100 Million a year business, but this past December, the Tenth Circuit, a federal appeals court, dismissed a copyright infringement lawsuit brought against the company over […]

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Copyright Law Intellectual Property Litigation Trademark Law

EA’s Lawsuit Against Zynga a Risky Game in its Own Right

Electronic Arts’ recent lawsuit against Zynga, the social media gaming company, should come with a warning label – “Rated R for Risky – Winning this lawsuit could hurt your very own business practices.” EA accuses Zynga of copying major elements from its popular “The Sims” game for Zynga’s online virtual reality game called “The Ville.” […]

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Copyright Law Entertainment Law Intellectual Property Litigation Trademark Law

Viral FB Copyright Notice Of No Use and Largely Unnecessary Unless You are in the Business of Selling Images and Videos

OK I have received many inquiries from people around the country about “FB’s new Guidelines” or “IP issues now that FB is public.” Just about every FB user has seen a proliferation of folks posting a statement about “owning their P rights” etc. It look something like this: In response to the new Facebook guidelines, […]

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Copyright Law Entertainment Law Intellectual Property Litigation Trademark Law

Warner Bros. Beats Out Creators’ Heirs Over Rights to Superman

Warner Bros., which now owns publisher DC Comics, won a major legal victory on Wednesday against the heirs of Joe Shuster and Jerry Siegel, the co-creators of Superman. The family of the creators of the Man of Steel had sought to enforce their rights under a 1976, “termination rights law” that went into effect in […]

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Copyright Law Entertainment Law Intellectual Property Trademark Law

Marilyn Monroe Case Shows Importance of Where Celebrities Live For Publicity Rights After Death

Last week the Ninth Circuit (the Federal Appeals court covering California) ruled that the heir to Marilyn Monroe’s estate could not stop a company from promoting and selling images of Monroe because she was a New York resident and New York does not recognize posthumous rights of publicity. The case arose in 2005 when The […]

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Copyright Law Fashion Law Intellectual Property Litigation Trademark Law

Appeals Court Restores Louboutin’s Red Sole Trademark

Round Two in the battle between two high couture fashion houses, Christian Louboutin and Yves Saint Laurent, goes to Louboutin as the Second Circuit (the federal appeals court that covers New York) reversed a lower court’s finding that Louboutin’s famous red sole could not constitute a trademark. Yves Saint Laurent had produced a line of […]

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Copyright Law Intellectual Property Litigation Trademark Law

Getty Images Pays $100K to Settle Car-Freshener Suit

Last month, stock photo giant Getty Images paid $100,000 to Car-Freshener Corp., makers of those ubiquitous tree-shaped air fresheners. Getty Images had several stock photos for license and sale in their catalog that included the famous trademarked fresheners. The federal lawsuit was filed in November 2009 and was reported on in this blog in October […]

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Copyright Law Entertainment Law Intellectual Property Litigation Trademark Law

NY Federal Appeals Court Supports “Theft of Idea” Claim

In big news for the TV and film industry in particular, the Second Circuit (the Federal Appeals Court that covers, among other states, New York) ruled that a claim could be brought for “theft of an idea” when a TV network takes an idea that was protected by a contract between the parties. In Forest […]