Guest post: Not So Cheerful About Varsity Brands

So last Wednesday (March 22, 2017, if you’re joining us late) the Supreme Court of the United States issued its decision in Star Athletica, LLC v. Varsity Brands, Inc, et al.  And a very small, highly specialized subset of LawTwitter went nuts. Ron Coleman collected some great examples on his post Rah Rah Raw. (Trademark attorneys: Clever names on demand.) On the one hand,we have experienced copyright / fashion lawyers saying things like this: Supreme Court issued very narrow ruling in #Varsity #copyright case today, solely resolving circuit split on separability test #FashionLaw — Staci Riordan (@staciriordan) March 22, 2017 On the other hand,…

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Rah rah raw

TTABlog declines to comment on S. Ct. cheerleader uniform decision. — TTABlog (@TTABlog) March 22, 2017 Indeed.  LIKELIHOOD OF CONFUSION® is also not ready to weigh in on Star Athletica, LLC v. Varsity Brands, Inc., 136 S. Ct. 1823 – Supreme Court 2016.  To be truthful, I kind of danced around it when I first mentioned it on the blog here; I did sort of analyze it, though not particularly incisively, I’ll grant you, here; though at the end of this thing — trust me, you don’t have to watch it — I did venture that an affirmance seemed likely,... Read more

Go for the Gold, man!

Originally posted 2014-05-23 12:53:59. Republished by Blog Post PromoterGet up to speed with the best and most popular links from last year’s edition of Technology & Marketing Law Blog, by Eric Goldman. Read more

Spuds, we really knew ye

Usually Pam Chestek is in charge of the Zombie Department in trademark-blog-land, but Marty Schwimmer reports on the dogged past and attempted resurrection of a once-beloved, if only because presumably drunk (and rather popular with the distaff side) Man’s Best Friend: Spuds McKenzie was a fictional dog character who appeared in Super Bowl commercials for BUD LIGHT in the late 80’s.  Trading on his reputation as The Original Party Animal, success came easy to Spuds and he reveled in the glamour and adulation.  But soon scandal caught up to him.  . . . Tired of the bad press, Anheuser Busch exercised the morality... Read more

Back from the void

In trademarks, generic is generic is generic.  That’s what makes it generic. But there’s a difference between a would-be trademark that is born generic and one that dies of “genericide.” We call the first type generic ab initio to impress baristas.  It’s not only a would-be trademark, it’s a never-was trademark.  More precisely, it never was a trademark, and nothing anyone can do could ever make it a trademark. To use a pretty darned generic example, a chair is a chair is a chair. Forever. All the advertising, sales and even social media engagement in the world won’t infuse your “Chair Brand” line... Read more

Cleveland rocks!

Originally posted 2014-03-05 15:01:19. Republished by Blog Post PromoterNow I have been to Cleveland a couple of times and I can’t say I actually saw this rocking take place.  I mean, this whole “rocking” concept, frankly, eludes me, as most people who have made my acquaintance for more than a minute or two since the 1980’s will attest. I’m fine with that! Still and all, Cleveland will rock in the fullest intellectual property sense of the word next Monday night, when LIKELIHOOD OF CONFUSION® presents at the March 2014 meeting of the Cleveland Intellectual Property Law Association!  Look, it says... Read more

Rutgers, Archer and Me: Using Social Media to Power Your Business

Originally posted 2016-05-11 23:09:41. Republished by Blog Post Promoter And I’ll be presenting! How do you like them apples! See you in sunny #Camden next Thursday, @Rutgers_Camden! — Ron Coleman (@RonColeman) May 10, 2016 By the time you read this I will be “presenting,” as we say, at a course in the “Small & Family Business ‘Unlock Your Potential’ Training Series entitled — yup — Using Social Media to Power Your Business which is co-sponsored by the Rutgers School of Business at Camden and my partners (law, not blog) at Archer & Greiner, P.C. Now of course to do this right,... Read more