Hashtags Are Not Trademarks—Eksouzian v. Albanese (Guest Blog Post)

Hashtags Are Not Trademarks—Eksouzian v. Albanese (Guest Blog Post)

By Guest Blogger Alexandra Roberts [Eric’s note: Prof. Roberts is a trademark expert at the University of New Hampshire School of Law. She’s writing a paper on hashtags as trademarks, a new topic of growing importance. When I saw this…

Keyword Ad Lawsuit Isn't Covered By California's Anti-SLAPP Law

Keyword Ad Lawsuit Isn’t Covered By California’s Anti-SLAPP Law

The plaintiff, Los Angeles Yellow Cab, and defendants compete in the taxi industry. The defendants bought keyword ads at the search engines, such as the following triggered by the search “Yellow Cab Los Angeles”: Yellow Cab Los Angeles—Call 800–521–8294 or…

Trade School's Domain Name Lawsuit Drops Like a (Granite) Rock

Trade School’s Domain Name Lawsuit Drops Like a (Granite) Rock

I don’t often blog cases where New Hampshire figures so prominently, so this is a shoutout to all of my New Hampshirian/New Hampshirite friends! The litigants are competitor schools that train tradespeople such as plumbers and gas fitters. Granite State…

What's Worse Than Cleaning Up A Meth Lab? A Trademark Injunction Against Using "Meth Lab Cleanup" In Metatags

What’s Worse Than Cleaning Up A Meth Lab? A Trademark Injunction Against Using “Meth Lab Cleanup” In Metatags

Opinions like this make me really crank-y. The litigants compete in the meth lab cleanup business. The plaintiff has registered trademarks for “Meth Lab Cleanup LLC.” Right away, we already know that weaponizing highly descriptive terms like that can cause…

Is Amazon Liable For IP Violations By Its Marketplace Vendors? (Forbes Cross-Post)

Is Amazon Liable For IP Violations By Its Marketplace Vendors? (Forbes Cross-Post)

Animal-shaped pillows are cute and fluffy, except when they spur litigation. Recently, the Milo & Gabby brand sued Amazon for IP infringement because merchants allegedly sold knockoffs of its “Cozy Companion Pillowcases.” Amazon has successfully avoided IP liability for its…

Troubling Trademark Ruling Over Amazon's Internal Search Results--MTM v. Amazon (Forbes Cross-Post)

Troubling Trademark Ruling Over Amazon’s Internal Search Results–MTM v. Amazon (Forbes Cross-Post)

When a consumer asks a retailer for a product the retailer doesn’t carry, how should the retailer respond? A recent federal appellate court opinion suggested that Amazon.com gave the wrong answers to consumers searching for a watch brand that it…

Confusion From Competitive Keyword Advertising? Fuhgeddaboudit

Confusion From Competitive Keyword Advertising? Fuhgeddaboudit

[Note: I wrote this post over the weekend, before the atrocious MTM v. Amazon case. I think virtually all of this post remains current despite that ruling. I’ll blog the MTM case separately.] I’ve been chronicling the futility of competitive…

Q2 2015 Quick Links, Part 1 (IP, Marketing and More)

Q2 2015 Quick Links, Part 1 (IP, Marketing and More)

Copyright * The dominant media storyline about the Mayweather-Pacquiao boxing match was the fight’s widespread illicit availability on the livestreaming apps Periscope and Meerkat. But this should have been the dominant storyline instead: An estimated 4.4 million viewers paid a…

Competitive Keyword Advertising Permitted As Nominative Use--ElitePay Global v. CardPaymentOptions

Competitive Keyword Advertising Permitted As Nominative Use–ElitePay Global v. CardPaymentOptions

I know, it’s getting repetitive blogging about competitive keyword advertising cases failing in court. But trademark owners keep bringing them, so I’ll keep blogging them. The Ruling The trademark owner does business as ElitePay Global. It provides “merchant payment solutions…

Google And Yahoo Defeat Last Remaining Lawsuit Over Competitive Keyword Advertising (Forbes Cross-Post)

Google And Yahoo Defeat Last Remaining Lawsuit Over Competitive Keyword Advertising (Forbes Cross-Post)

Keyword advertising using competitors’ trademarks is now so well-accepted, it may be hard to remember that the practice used to generate serious debate among lawyers and ethicists. In particular, the search engines drew substantial legal fire from trademark owners for…