Truth and TriFlex: The Fourth Circuit’s Ruling Regarding “Literally False” Advertising Claims

This blog post discusses the Fourth Circuit’s ruling regarding “literally false” advertising claims. The case is In re GNC Corp., 789 F.3d 505 (2015). I. Factual Background GNC, a national nutritional products retailer, has manufactured and sold a line of joint health supplements for years. These products, which contain glucosamine and chondroitin compounds, are marketed collectively under the “TriFlex” brand. The TriFlex product label represents that the supplements “promote[] joint mobility & flexibility,”.. Read More

Video Game Content and the Law

On July 6, 2016, the American population was swept in a wave of nostalgia that redefined the gaming market. Across American cities, strangers came together to play Pokémon Go, the augmented reality game. The game quickly becoming the most downloaded app from the Apple App Store ever. Pokémon Go introduced players to augmented reality gaming. Partnering with Google Maps, Pokémon Go incorporated real world streets, parks, and landmarks into the virtual gaming world.. Read More

Trademarks – Is There a Monopoly on Color in the Fashion Industry?

Walking around New York City, it’s not too difficult to recognize designer heels due to their unique designs. In particular, Christian Louboutin’s red soles have become a brand on its own. Christian Louboutin designs and markets high-fashioned footwear, leather goods, and accessories. Since 1992, the outsoles of the Louboutin shoes have been painted in lacquered red, giving them the vibrant look that so many women have fallen in love with and have come.. Read More

Supreme Court to Review the Ban on Registering Disparaging Trademarks

Under Section 2 the Lanham Act of 1946, the United States Patent and Trademark Office can deny trademark registration to any mark that “consists of or comprises immoral, deceptive, or scandalous matter; or matter which may disparage. . .persons, living or dead, institutions, beliefs, or national symbols, or bring them into contempt, or disrepute.” 15 USCS § 1052 (1946). While one is free to use any disparaging, scandalous or immoral mark as a signifier,.. Read More

The Potential Implications of the Instagram Regram

Instagram has become one of the most widely used social networking applications today. Its interface is based entirely off of user-generated content by allowing its users to share photos, videos, and network with other members either publicly or privately on the application. As of June 2016, the mobile photo-sharing network has reached 500 million monthly active users, meaning that a whopping 20% of all Internet users use Instagram. Users post both their own.. Read More

A Comparative Study on Product-Packaging Trademark Law: Current Judicial Attitudes in Taiwan and the United States

Introduction: The Kose Case in Taiwan On November 6, 2014, the Intellectual Property Court of Taiwan, which was erected on August 1, 2008 after Taiwan joined the World Trade Organization on January 1, 2002, reversed an important case concerning the trademark of Medicated Kose Sekkisei [Lotion]. The ruling in Kose Corporation v. Intellectual Property Office, 智慧財產法院 [Taiwan] [Intellectual Property Court] Nov. 6, 2014, No. 83 serves as a good representation of current judicial attitudes of.. Read More

Trademarking “The Blue”

A football fan sits down on the couch late on a Saturday night and turns on ESPN to watch the day’s college football highlights. The program is what one would expect—a collection of perfect throws, unbelievable catches, and bone-crushing tackles taking place on a large expanse of green grass or turf. Then, as the program shifts to a new set of highlights, the field suddenly turns blue. A less experienced viewer may think.. Read More

Comedian John Oliver Rides ‘Drumpf’ Wave to the USPTO

Donald Trump isn’t the only one filing trademarks in the hopes of capturing this election cycle’s headlines. Comedian and “Last Week Tonight” host John Oliver recently amassed a great deal of news coverage and social media shares with his satirically scathing twenty-one-minute segment on Trump’s presidential bid. Oliver concluded the segment by reviving Trump’s apparent ancestral name, Drumpf, and mobilizing his young, Internet-savvy following to spread the ‘truth’ on Trump. Oliver pulled out.. Read More

Make America Great Again™ (but only for Trump)

Primaries are not the only thing Donald Trump has been winning as of late, and we have the United States Patent and Trademark Office to thank for that. On November 11, 2015, a U.S. Trademark examiner completed the final phase of Trump’s three year quest to trademark the phrase “Make America Great Again.” Despite being a prominent slogan in the Reagan campaign from over thirty years ago, Mr. Trump now has the exclusive.. Read More

High Court Refuses to Give Kit-Kat a Break

Nestle’s long battle to have the shape of their Kit-Kat bars receive trademark protection in the European Union has once again hit an obstacle. Previously, the advocate general of the European court of justice provided an opinion opposed to giving the four finger shape of the bar trademark protection because it did not comply with EU law. Recently, the High Court of Justice of England and Wales agreed with the advocate general and.. Read More