Category

Trademarks
Trademarks have helped create value for all sorts of products. However, may a living thing such as a plant variety that you have bred and created be trademarked? Generally, the answer is no. Varietal or cultivar names are designations given to cultivated varieties or subspecies of live plants or agricultural seeds and they amount to...
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The COVID-19 pandemic has brought about significant changes across our lives, including—believe it or not—in the realm of trademark law. On December 27, 2020, the “Trademark Modernization Act of 2020” (the “Act”) became law, as part of a COVID-19 relief and spending bill. If you are thinking about embarking on the journey to owning a...
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In a highly competitive marketplace, established companies sometimes use a variety of means to suppress emerging companies and its branding that may or may not threaten their own market share. Often, lawsuits for trademark infringement end upon enjoining the defendant infringer. However, companies always press for monetary damages as well, but a prevailing plaintiff is...
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What are “Brand Bullies”? On top of today’s extremely competitive market, small businesses may be also dealing with a “brand bully.” Also known as a trademark bully, a brand bully is a company that resorts to litigation and uses its trademark rights to harass and intimidate another business without a sound legal basis. These companies...
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Trademark and Copyright Issues to Consider With Sales of Athletic Goods and Apparel When can a generic design rise to an infringement of intellectual property rights? A common and growing occurrence comes when one takes an attribute of a famous athlete (like a number), puts it with that athlete’s team color scheme, and the next...
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SCOTUS Ruling In USPTO v. Booking.com Opens The Door For Generic Domain Owners To Register Their Trademark The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has believed that “generic.com” domain names were almost always generic and therefore not registrable under trademark law. However, the Supreme Court’s nearly unanimous decision in USPTO v. Booking.com (2020) 591 U.S....
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Trademark Ornamental Refusals - What to Consider
Trademark Ornamental Refusals – What to Consider Sometimes, the USPTO will issue eccentric and unusual refusals to a trademark application. One such refusal is called an ornamental refusal. If you receive a trademark ornamental refusals, it means your registration of your applied-for mark has been refused because your mark is essentially merely decorative. That is,...
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Renewing Your Trademark
Renewing Your Trademark-Excusable Non-Use Renewing Your Trademark – Even after you have successfully registered a mark with the US Patent and Trademark Office, you are not done in ensuring your mark stays registered and protected. Your trademark application must be renewed 5-6 years after your first registration in order to maintain that registration. You must...
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The Deceptively Misdescriptiveness Rejection
The ‘Deceptively Misdescriptiveness’ Rejection Deceptively Misdescriptiveness – There are many reasons your trademark application may be denied. One of the more unique reasons is something called “deceptively misdescriptiveness.” Your first question is probably “what does that even mean?” A mark is considered deceptively misdescriptive if it describes an ingredient, quality, characteristic, function, or feature of...
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USPTO - Primarily Merely a Surname Rejection
The Primarily Merely a Surname Rejection Primarily Merely a Surname – You’ve submitted a trademark application and after many months, you finally receive news from the USPTO—but it’s an Office Action. There are several reasons you may receive a rejection from the USPTO for a trademark application, the most popular one being a Section 2d—“likelihood...
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Recent Articles

Trademark Modernization Act of 2020: Increasing Protective Measures
March 1, 2021
No Damages, Big Problem: Infringement Claims Lacking Cognizable Injury
February 8, 2021
Fair and Foul in Tech and Copyright
January 24, 2021