Better read fast because as Ricky Bobby once said, ‘If you ain’t first, you’re last.’
If you breathed the same air as me this summer, you probably know I became a huge NASCAR fan. After hearing the first car roar on Michigan Avenue (even before walking into the Chicago Street Race), NASCAR earned my allegiance. So lucky you, you get to read about it too, haha! However, this time, with a recently acquired trademark lens. Continue reading “Tracks to Trademarks”
Picture this – you walk into a new bakery. The smells hit you from every direction. You see the different kinds of frosting oozing out of the glass case showing off all the new goodies. Where could you possibly be you might wonder… You’re at Crumbl Cookies! Crumbl is a new-ish national cookie franchise that sells its unique, freshly baked, rotating flavored cookies out of most big cities around the country. Emphasis on the *unique* part.
But, is it really unique? Crumbl discovered two cookie companies were trying to copy their packaging, logos, and rotating weekly ensemble of cookie flavors. As a result, Crumbl filed two lawsuits against two of its competitors, Dirty Dough and Crave Cookies in May of 2022, alleging trademark and trade dress infringement.
Crocs and the Importance of their Intellectual Property
We all recognize the brand! Crocs has sold over 850 million pairs of their iconic shoes in over 85 different countries since 2002. Today, Crocs offers numerous models of shoes. However, the company’s success can be attributed to their original clog-style shoe named the “Classic Clog.” The Classic Clog is made from a resin-based material known as Croslite. This material allows the shoe to be durable while offering the user exceptional comfort. These features have led Crocs to market its clog design for use across a variety of applications including boating, gardening, hiking, and even hospital-use.
Jack Daniels is an established whiskey brand sold in stores and bars nationwide. Bad Spaniel is a dog toy sold by VIP Products LLC that looks similar to the alcohol products sold by Jack Daniels.
The dog toy is in the shape of a Jack Daniels whiskey bottle. A label “Bad Spaniels” appears where the whiskey label would normally be placed. The label also lists “The Old No. 2 on your Tennessee Carpet” below the brand name. This is similar to the Jack Daniels brand Old No. 7 which lists the product name and “Tennessee Sour Mash Whiskey” on the front label. The dog toy is a parody of the Jack Daniels bottle used to “make fun” of the famous bottle and brand. Continue reading “Bad Spaniels: Free Speech, Parody, or Blatant Infringement?”
Harry Styles might be the world’s biggest pop star. Styles began his musical career in 2010 as a member of the band One Direction, and he is now one of the most popular solo artists in the world. At February’s GRAMMY Awards, Styles’s “Harry’s House” won Album Of The Year, arguably the most significant award at the show. Styles is known not only for his … Continue reading Harry’s Style: Trademark Infringement Against Counterfeit Sellers
By the time November 1st rolls around each year, I often expect to hear “All I Want For Christmas Is You” when I turn on the radio. Mariah Carey is America’s Christmas ‘It-girl.’ According to Vulture magazine, as of Christmas 2022, Mariah’s song was the longest-running holiday Number 1 song of all time. Her song, which was released in 1994, has garnered so much recognition … Continue reading Mariah Carey: No Longer The Queen of Christmas According to Trademark Experts
Since the inception of the National Collegiate Athletic Association otherwise known as the “NCAA”, student-athletes were not able to collect any type of financial benefits while they were playing collegiate-level sports. Fast forward to today, student-athletes are now allowed to make profits off of their “name, image, and likeness” aka “NIL,” a type of intellectual property right that’s grouped under the right of publicity (essentially gives each person the exclusive right to use and license their identity for commercial promotion). What I and many others were once not allowed to partake in, is now available and encouraged for all student-athletes. Some student-athletes are already making millions in deals and sponsorships! Continue reading “NCAA Sports and IP – The Perfect Merger”
Two of the biggest brands in the fitness industry went head-to-head recently in a lawsuit for trademark infringement, which means one company is using some form of a trademark that another company believes is too similar to their own. Peloton has sued Lululemon over trade dress, which is a type of trademark that encompasses product design or product packaging. Continue reading “A Trademark War in the Athletic Arena”
Ten Studio Albums. Five Tours. Two Re-Recordings. One Massive Fanbase. We know all too well that Taylor Swift is the pinnacle of success for the music industry. Spanning multiple genres from country to pop and even some folk(lore), Taylor Swift has accomplished a lot in her first 32 years of life. But what’s gotten her to this level of recognition?
Some say it’s her songs. Some say it’s her stage presence. Others say it’s her re-recordings. Taylor Swift says it could be her songs, “with a catchy hook and an intensely cathartic bridge section.” Call it what you want, I say her level of recognition comes from her fearless team of lawyers registering her trademarks.