This case, filed against my client in the Eastern District of Arkansas in the middle of 2019, started with two lamps made to look like they were made of deer antlers. Ultimately, we brought a motion for summary judgment and argued that the plaintiff’s lamp was not sufficiently original to merit copyright protection — because it…

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Forum shopping is the concept that some plaintiffs will skip their local court in favor of another jurisdiction that has a track record of ruling favorably in similar cases. In Leong v. Agence France-Presse et al., a plaintiff based in Portugal found reason to bring his suit in New York even though there were perfectly…

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Just as a song recording has two copyrights, so do comedy performances. Each recorded song and bit has a sound recording right and the rights to the underlying composition. In the Pandora Media case, these underlying rights form the basis for a dispute that would eventually veer into the Noerr-Pennington doctrine, the Sherman Act, and…

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A case in the Northern District of California was notable for the way it ended, as opposed to its otherwise straightforwardness. Leftfield Holdings v. Google was a class action started on behalf of several restaurateurs of Mexican food who accused Google of trademark infringement, counterfeiting, false association, and false advertising. This was a motion to…

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UFO Magazine, Inc. v. Showtime Network, Inc. involved a plaintiff’s second attempt to convince the District of Wyoming to hold Showtime liable for infringing the trademark UFO. The work in question was UFO, Showtime’s documentary-style television series by JJ Abrams. UFO Magazine has been publishing since 1998. One of the latest ideas the magazine was…

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TTAB rulings are sometimes less exciting than cases we pluck from the federal judiciary — but this one involves Prince and the mark PURPLE RAIN. NPG Records (NPG) and Paisley Park Enterprises (Paisley Park) filed an opposition to the attempt of Bang Energy Drink to register the mark PURPLE RAIN for the sports supplements and…

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We normally don’t deal with patent cases at Kaufman & Kahn, but a case from New Jersey’s state court system caught my eye. Tormasi v. NJ Dept of Corrections provides a window into New Jersey’s correctional system and the treatment of pro se, would-be litigants. The underlying issue — which was not addressed in this…

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In International and Hermès of Paris v. Rothschild, the famous Birkin bag served as a device to trigger the plot in a lawsuit about trademarks, first amendment rights, and talking too much.  The defendant is a self-styled marketing strategist and entrepreneur who comes from the fashion industry. Before the events in this lawsuit, he created…

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Earlier this year, Kaufman & Kahn won a $19 million on summary judgment in lieu of complaint. The defendant then filed notice of appeal, as well as a motion for reargument and reconsideration. We briefed it in full, and the court scheduled oral argument months later — in mid-August 2022. In a nutshell, we defeated…

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Dueling food options faced off in the Eastern Division of the Northern District of Illinois in Grubhub v. Kroger Co. This case was notable because it had been delegated to a magistrate judge, and the district judge rejected the subsequent report and recommendation.  Kroger is a mega-corporation that owns several supermarket chains across the U.S.…

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