“The Victorian compromise”

Defamation and reputation management are issues of intense interest at LIKELIHOOD OF CONFUSION®. Obviously cultural context means a lot when considering these two related topics. Here Daniel Solove reviews Professor Lawrence Friedman‘s Guarding Life’s Dark Secrets: Legal and Social Controls over Reputation, Propriety, and Privacy: Friedman focuses much of his book on the Victorian era of the nineteenth century. The key phenomenon in his book is what Friedman terms the “Victorian compromise.” The Victorian era... Read more

End-run around the USPTO

As you can imagine, the power vested in a court by this law can only be used for good... or evil. And in this Second Circuit appeal of a matter in which our office was brought in after the entry of a judgment by the district court, we argue that it was not so good what the judge did. Read more

Patsy’s: Circuit Gently Pulls the Plug

Here (below) is something you don’t see every day. It’s a summary order [UPDATE: amended and corrected on August 18, 2021] in IOB Realty v. Patsy’s, the latest installment in the endless PATSY’S trademark litigation saga. There’s no sense in summarizing a summary order — but, really, wow. (Not that the previous opinion in an “unrelated” Patsy’s matter was just a bunch of calamari. Really — wow.) And I was there! Now, if you were... Read more

Ban that man!

London’s Times: People who illegally download films and music will be cut off from the internet under new legislative proposals to be unveiled next week.Internet service providers (ISPs) will be legally required to take action against users who access pirated material, The Times has learnt. That is certainly interesting, though hardly enforceable. Of course, the UK is the country where you need to buy a license to have a television (at least in theory). Originally... Read more

Perpetual perfidy

Instapundit notes an article in the New York Times arguing for the provision for more government gasoline to pour on the fire of IP-overreach — perpetual copyright. Glenn Reynolds explains why that’s an awful idea. Originally posted 2007-05-20 21:29:00. Republished by Blog Post Promoter Read more

Home cookin’ a la mode, with a most undeserving dessert

From the WSJ Law Blog: A French court today cracked down on counterfeits — and an outlet that sells them — ordering eBay to pay Louis Vuitton and other luxury brands — Kenzo, Guerlain, Dior and Givenchy — $63.1 million in damages for auctioning fake goods. Here’s the early story from WSJ. . . . “I was really surprised by the number,” J. Michael Huget, the head of IP at Butzel Long, told the Law... Read more

Brann, Stitham, Swetnam

Found blogs

Bunches of new soft IP blogs have sprung up.  I’ve been adding them to the Blogroll (for civilian blogs) or the Professional Courtesy roll (for wax-stained wretches) as soon as I see them if they link to me.  It’s a nice collection over there on the left; the only categories you won’t find there are LexBlogs and other proprietary networks, which don’t link to blogs everyone else reads, and LawProf blogs, which don’t link to... Read more

Phantoms, zombies and the big problem with trademark use (Best of 2017)

Originally published May 30, 2017. I’ve got trademark use on the brain! Maybe it’s the Belmora effect — the result of living in a world in which use of a trademark in a country that is not the U.S. gets you a Lanham Act claim under 43(a) in the U.S. Who can blame me?  It’s boggling my mind and making it soft, this trademark-use business. As I mentioned in my brief appearance at INTA last week in... Read more

IP Rights Again Brandished to Silence Critics

The Associated Press reports: The distinctive chocolate bar on the dust jacket of a new book about the founder of The Hershey Co. violates its trademark, the candy maker said in a federal lawsuit. The company wants an injunction to prevent publisher Simon & Schuster Inc. from using Hershey-owned images to market “Hershey: Milton S. Hershey’s Extraordinary Life of Wealth, Empire and Utopian Dreams,” which is coming out next month. Hershey spokeswoman Stephanie Moritz said... Read more

Semi-monthly off the wall tweets

Here’s what I have been chirping about lately: RT @ArsLaw: Tenenbaum: $675K stat. dams absurd; I caused $21 in losses | Ok, even I don’t buy that math. RT @CopyrightLaw: Exclusive Rights: “11th Cir. finds medical forms lack sufficient originality; rejects Feist standard” RT @CopyrightLaw: Goldman: “Rare Ruling on Damages for Sending Bogus Copyright Takedown Notice–Lenz v. Universal” RT @internetcases RT @ernieattorney: Judge sides w/mom who used Prince cut in background of YouTube video /via @cyberlaw... Read more

The digital dead hand

It’s an estate planning / New York bar exam joke — it has to do with something called the Rule Against Perpetuities. Yes, of course, we know that hands are made of digits; but how hard do we have to work to form the perfectly flowing pun when we have a real point to make? I have been troubled for a while by the proposition that there is no cognizable expectation by a decedent of privacy of email or... Read more

Swan song

Someone say something about getting all introspective and stuff?  Well, the Drug and Device Law blog’s Mark Herrmann is, as he so curmudgeonfully puts it, outta here: After 20 years at Jones Day, I’ve been made an offer that I can’t refuse: I’m resigning from Jones Day’s partnership at the end of December 31 to begin work as Vice President and Chief Counsel — Litigation at Aon Corporation, the world’s largest insurance brokerage, on January... Read more