Taking on a trademark involves more than just filing a form with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and hoping to receive back a favorable response. Most companies buy a website domain to match their hoped-for trademark, and they mark up all of their products and services with the hoped-for trademark to start building the brand.
German philosophy Friedrich Nietzsche made the controversial statement back in 1882 that "God is dead." Pure Flix Entertainment took a totally different approach with its 2014 independent film, “God’s Not Dead.” Based on the success of the firm: Nietzsche 0, God 1.
A Michael Brown of Okland, California, is in hot water. While we admire his entrepreneurship, we cannot understand what he does not understand about trademarks. Mr. Brown set up two businesses, “New York Jedi” and “Lightsaber Academy,” to provide training for use of the fictional weapons made part of the culture by the Star Wars movies.
Lucasfilm, the company founded by George Lucas, the creator and owner of the Star Wars franchise (and now a unit of Disney), is suing Mr. Brown for trademark infringement.
Many things can be copyrighted - from novels, poems and plays, to songs, music and performance. But fonts can – and very often – are copyrighted. By “font” we mean the design of a typeface.
And just to prove that, Font Brothers (Yes, that is the name of the company.) is suing Hasbro, the toy giant, for copyright infringement over its use of its Generation B font for Hasbro’s My Little Pony products. In the Complaint, the plaintiff claims that Hasbro failed to secure a license to use Generation B so it is using a “pirated font.”
A U.S. District Court judge tossed out a trademark lawsuit against international fashion house Louis Vuitton claiming that it copied the design of LVL XII, a small, luxury sneaker designer and manufacturer. It all came down to a strip of metal that both companies attach to the front of the sole of their sneakers that are called “toe places.”
The case never even went to a jury. The judge ruled that there was no infringement and dismissed the case. Here are the two sneakers.
Eel River Brewing, a craft beer brewer, claims that is has exclusive rights to “California Blonde.” As far as beer goes, that is. Not anything else related to blondes from California or elsewhere. It appears that a competing craft beer brewer, Duck Foot, is calling its suds "California Blonde.” So Eel River filed a trademark infringement lawsuit against Duck Foot.
What was the movie in which the two girls return to their high school reunion and claim they are the inventors of the Post-it® Note? It seems that one Alan Amron filed a trademark infringement lawsuit against 3M, claiming that he is the true inventor of the Post-it note. The case was dismissed because Mr. Amron filed a similar lawsuit that was settled 20 years ago. And, he is not the inventor.
Pinnacle Foods Group – which owns Birdseye frozen foods, Vlasic pickles and a few other brands – has dropped a lawsuit accusing food giant Kraft Heinz of purloining the “Satisfy Your Craving” slogan that Pinnacle uses for its Hungry-Man® frozen meals. Kraft Heinz was using the near identical “Satisfy Your Cravings” slogan to help launch its Devour (good name!) brand of frozen meals.
Back in 1856, Thomas Burberry established the Burberry brand when he began selling women’s luxury clothing and accessories. Today, Burberry Group Inc. is a multi-million dollar, multi-national corporation with over 10,000 employees and a strong, luxury brand that includes eyeglasses and cosmetics. Burberry promotes a checked pattern that is popular in carpeting and is referred to as "Burberry". The company has an equestrian logo that is prominently marked with a “®” to show it is a registered trademark.
The property located at 333 North Dearborn began its life as the House of Blue Hotels. No, we are not kidding. It later was renamed the Hotel Sax. No, we are not kidding. In 2014 it became the Hotel Chicago. That is until Joe Perillo, a Chicago car dealer and entrepreneur, opened a hotel at 1622 West Jackson that he also calls the Hotel Chicago. Not surprisingly, he is now facing a trademark infringement lawsuit by the owners of the original Hotel Chicago.