Duplicitous Competitive Keyword Advertising Lawsuits--Fareportal v. LBF (& Vice-Versa)

Duplicitous Competitive Keyword Advertising Lawsuits–Fareportal v. LBF (& Vice-Versa)

OK, let me offer a proposition that seems so obvious to me that I feel silly saying it. If you buy your competitor’s trademarks as keywords, it’s not advisable to sue your competitors for buying your keywords. Yes? Are you…

Food Flavor Can't Be Trademarked (Even If The Baked Ziti Is Delicious)--NY Pizzeria v. Syal (Forbes Cross-Post)

Food Flavor Can’t Be Trademarked (Even If The Baked Ziti Is Delicious)–NY Pizzeria v. Syal (Forbes Cross-Post)

You may remember the advertising campaign for Coke Zero from almost a decade ago. The gag is that Coke Zero allegedly tasted so much like “real” Coke that one division of Coca-Cola threatened to sue another division for “taste infringement.”…

Trademark Owners Just Can't Win Keyword Advertising Cases--EarthCam v. OxBlue

Trademark Owners Just Can’t Win Keyword Advertising Cases–EarthCam v. OxBlue

I have repeatedly observed that trademark owners routinely lose their lawsuits against advertisers who buy their trademarks as advertising keywords. (This is in addition to the futility of bringing trademark lawsuits against search engines, which almost no one does any…

The GOOGLE Mark Isn't Generic--Elliott v. Google (Forbes Cross-Post)

The GOOGLE Mark Isn’t Generic–Elliott v. Google (Forbes Cross-Post)

The “Google” trademark regularly ranks as one of the most valuable trademarks in the world. In 2011, Forbes estimated the trademark’s value at $44B, and a more recent estimate placed the value at $113B. Almost certainly, the “Google” trademark is…

Urban Outfitters’ Kent State T-Shirt Was Offensive But Probably Legal (Guest Blog Post)

By Tyler Ochoa As reported in various news outlets (including MSN and New York magazine), Urban Outfitters generated a storm of controversy on Twitter a few days ago, when it was discovered that it was offering for sale a “vintage”…

Announcing the Second Edition of "Advertising & Marketing Law: Cases and Materials" by Tushnet & Goldman

Announcing the Second Edition of “Advertising & Marketing Law: Cases and Materials” by Tushnet & Goldman

Rebecca Tushnet and I are pleased to announce the release of Advertising & Marketing Law: Cases and Materials, second edition (2014). It’s available at Gumroad as a $11.50 DRM-free download (PDF version / epub mobile device version) and other outlets….

Fictional Software Brand In 'Dark Knight Rises' Movie Doesn't Infringe Real-Life Software Brand--Fortres Grand v. Warner Bros.

Fictional Software Brand In ‘Dark Knight Rises’ Movie Doesn’t Infringe Real-Life Software Brand–Fortres Grand v. Warner Bros.

This case involves a key plot device, called “Clean Slate” software, from the movie Dark Knight Rises, part of the umpteenth attempt to reboot the Batman franchise. The fictional software provides an uber right-to-be-forgotten; it “enables an individual to erase…

Q2 2014 Quick Links, Part 1 (IP)

Q2 2014 Quick Links, Part 1 (IP)

Trademark * Barton Beebe has posted a new free casebook, Trademark Law: An Open-Source Casebook. Quite possibly the new gold standard of trademark casebooks. Check it out! * Hollywood, Esq.: Chubby Checker Settles Penis Size App Lawsuit. Prior blog post. *…

Don't Roll The Dice On Defamation Suits Against Gripe Sites, Especially In California--Ocean's Eleven v. Anders

Don’t Roll The Dice On Defamation Suits Against Gripe Sites, Especially In California–Ocean’s Eleven v. Anders

This case involves the now defunct website www.oceans11.info. There’s one archival version in Archive.org from 2012, though I found it confusing. The website was a gripe site created by Tim Anders (a/k/a “Dr. Hope“), a professional poker player. Anders protested…

Another Questionable IP Lawsuit Over a Derogatory Twitter Account

Another Questionable IP Lawsuit Over a Derogatory Twitter Account

Uli Behringer is the the CEO of “Music Group,” a company I had not heard of prior to this lawsuit. Apparently ticked off at the antics of “@NotUliBehringer” and “@fakeuli,” Behringer and his company tried to get Twitter to take…