Mattel scores minor win in Bratz® dolls IP custody battle.

A federal district court judge last week threw out a lawsuit brought by Mattel Bratz® rival MGA. The suit accused Mattel of anti-competitive conduct since August of 2010. Judge David O. Carter tossed MGA’s suit because it alleged the same  facts underlying MGA’s claims to the Bratz® trademarks in defending an earlier case against Mattel. Last Spring a California jury ruled for MGA and held Mattel liable for $309 Million in damages…. (more…)

Facebook of Sex — Trademark Infringement or Parody?

Facebook has sued Various, Inc., the owner of Penthouse, adultfriendfinder.com and other adult-themed websites, in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California, for trademark infringement based upon Various’ creation of website called Facebook of Sex with the URL: facebookofsex.com.  Various has defended the name and the website saying, among other things, that it is a parody permissible under the First Amendment of the United States Constitution.  The case is in its nascent stages and no decisions have been rendered.  So, what do you think:  infringement or parody?

It’s Not Too Late To Protect Your Brand From An Unsavory Double Entendre

 “…in bed.”  Maybe it was just us, but tacking those two little words on to the end of a perfectly innocuous sentence turned the fortune in every Chinese takeout fortune cookie my friends and I have had since high school into racy innuendo.  The same thing is about to happen to internet addresses.   That’s because the familiar list of top level domains (such as .com or .edu) is growing and will soon include .xxx.  Just in time for Halloween,… (more…)

10th Circuit Dish Network insurance case reinforces the need to read your policy closely……very closely.

Well-known patent troll Ron Katz sued Dish Network in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California alleging infringement of 23 patents by Dish Network’s customer service telephone system pay-per-view ordering features. Dish had five commercial insurance policies in place all of which provided for defense costs in lawsuits claiming “advertising Injury.” As is typical, the policies all defined “advertising Injury” as injury arising out, et alia, “misappropriation of advertising ideas or style of doing business.” Equating patent infringement to misappropriation, and noting that some of the claims of some of the patents covered a method of advertising, … (more…)