Category Archives: IP – From Theory to Practice

Thinking out Loud…. About Copyrights: Ed Sheeran’s Recent Copyright Lawsuits

Ed Sheeran is a Grammy-winning artist known for his hit songs such as “Thinking Out Loud” and “The Shape of You.” Sheeran has accrued a great deal of wealth and as a result seems to be a good target for copyright trolls, litigious entities or individuals that litigate large amounts of copyright infringement cases with often baseless claims in the hope for a settlement. Ed Sheeran is a well-known artist and as such, he is in a financial situation to settle lawsuits rather than go through the litigation process. Continue reading

My Summer Working on “Secrets” … Trade Secrets!

Stealing, scheming, heroes, villains, action! You might think I’m talking about the new James Bond movie, but I’m actually talking about intellectual property!

When people hear the words “intellectual property” they may think of the traditional patents, copyrights, or trademarks. But most people might not realize that there is another kind of IP – trade secrets. I definitely fell into the “not knowing” category prior to working at an IP firm this past summer.

Although I worked on a multitude of IP matters, the one that stuck out to me the most was a high-stakes trade secret case. It felt just like a James Bond movie! I felt like I was a detective, scanning through documents, finding evidence. Then trying to figure out how many “crimes” the bad guy committed and what he stole from our client!

 

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Free Patent Lawyers? It’s easier than you think!

Are you a student curious if there is a place for pro bono work in patent law? Are you a practitioner curious about how the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has addressed accessibility to patent protection? Do you or a friend want to file a patent for an invention but can’t afford a patent attorney?  If so, this blog is for you! Continue reading

Sports, Photography, and Copyright: Who Has the Rights?

For sports fans, photographs taken during competition can become iconic. Muhammad Ali standing over Joe Frazier, the United States Hockey Team celebrating the “Miracle On Ice,” and Tiger Woods at the Masters are a few examples. Sports photos are highly marketable, but who owns and has the rights to use these photos?

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Nike v. StockX: “Running” to NFTs

Have you heard of NFTs, or non-fungible tokens? In recent years, NFTs and their associated intellectual property rights are increasingly embroiled in legal battles. One such example is Nike v. StockX, a NFT trademark case filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. This case demonstrates that fashion brands like Nike are willing to battle in the courtroom for intellectual property rights in NFTs.

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Kim Kardashian’s Latest Line Is Causing Trademark Trouble

Everyone knows her. Some dislike her. Ultimately, she’s one of the wealthiest women in the world. She has her hands in everything from entertainment, to clothing, to gaming. She is even currently studying to be a lawyer. Kim Kardashian seems like she may have it all, but her latest business venture may not be what she was hoping for.

Photo of Kim Kardashian by Eva Rinaldi Celebrity Photographer, licensed via Creative Commons.

She recently announced the release of her own skincare line, “SKKN by Kim.” Pronounced “skin,” the name has recently been called into question. Kim has recently applied for several trademarks for the new line, which may or may not be granted.

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Taking a Bite Out of the Apple: Apple’s Crusade against Trademark Infringement

Photo by Zhang Kaiyv via Unsplash

Apple is one of the largest companies in the world with arguably the best brand recognition of any global company. No matter what country you are in, if you mention Apple most people would recognize the brand and its suite of Macintosh and iPhone products. You may even be using an Apple product right now to view this article.

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AI and IP: Bananas, Bots, and Brains

As technology develops, the growing presence of Artificial Intelligence (AI) within our lives becomes more prominent. AI predicts what we want to watch on TV, what food we want to eat, and what we want to type. The predictive abilities of AI have begun to even encroach upon the creative space. The use of AI as a tool in arts and science is not new, however. Scientists have used the residual processing power from video game consoles to assist AI in processing models for the potential folded structures of proteins. What is new however is the use of AI to create a new product with little human input entirely.

This raises important questions in intellectual property (IP) (Particularly in the fields of patent and copyright law.) If an AI invents something useful or creates an expressive work, who will own the IP  in that work? If the invention is patentable, who is the inventor? The AI or the creator or owner of the AI? Similarly, if an expressive work is copyrightable, who is considered the author? Answering these questions is essential in determining who will ultimately own the IP.

Thus far, the question of AI inventorship or authorship has hinged on the fact that such creations are a result of a non-human entity. To begin to understand how such creations from non-human entities are treated, we first look at how non-human authorship is treated by the courts.  We will start at the beginning – before AI was considered an inventor.

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The Benefits (and Difficulties) In Protecting Trade Secrets in a Digital Age

When most law students think of protecting an invention or technology, they immediately jump to patents, which is a type of IP granted by the government to protect inventions. However, trade secrets are also a type of intellectual property that can protect technology. And, trade secrets can sometimes be more useful – and valuable – than patents. As we will see, companies are increasingly turning to trade secrets as a means of protecting their intellectual property. Some of the biggest IP litigation cases in recent years have involved trade secrets. Almost every company uses trade secrets to protect information. A downside to trade secrets however, is that they are sometimes difficult to protect. Continue reading

Knowing Your Audience: The Importance of Venue in Patent Litigation

As a summer associate working in patent litigation, I kept seeing the same judge’s name in the same district court. At first, I had no idea why this was the case. However, I’ve since learned how important venue is in patent litigation.

Selecting the right venue is crucial in patent litigation cases, because where a case is filed can impact its likelihood of success. So, what exactly is venue? And why is it so important to patent litigation? Allow me explain.

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