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Trademark Law Archives

News and Notes Focused on the 3 Public Faces of IP Law

  • Brand Image Protection - Trademark Law
  • Visual Image Protection - Copyright Law
  • Personal Image Protection - Right of Publicity Law

The Image Protection Law blog has been created in order to share stories and information on the legal aspects of: 1) the marketplace reputation of a company or product captured in its trademark, 2) published or publicly-displayed artwork, photography, and any created visual design, and 3) use of a person's photograph or likeness for product promotion or other commercial purposes.

The "IP3" share at least one thing in common: Image is everything. In these posts let's look at what that means in the realm of intellectual property in the news, but let's also be prepared to explore if there's something more beyond "everything." Don't forget, the intellectual in "intellectual property" doesn't mean smart or brainy, although by nature true creators often are. The word is used to refer to any creation, i.e., a "product of the mind." While this blog will be regularly updated, you are encouraged to share your thoughts on these posts.

Comic convention lawsuit: 'Genericide' in action?

In our last post, we explored the issue of "genericide." As we discussed, the genericization of a product or a brand is something that attentive business people want to avoid. The risk is that if a trademark isn't defended and the product or service it's associated with becomes commoditized, it can erode the ability to optimize earnings.

How can I avoid the hazards of 'genericide'?

Some readers with receding hairlines or graying tresses will remember the age of generic products. Back in the 1980s, goods from bleach to spaghetti noodles started appearing in grocery stores. They stood out for what they lacked - specifically colorful labels, company branding and logos. Generics carried minimalist black and white labels; so instead of Budweiser, a person might buy simply Beer.

Wine label dispute highlights one benefit of federal trademark protection, P.2

In our last post, we began looking at an ongoing lawsuit between two winemakers--one located in Clarksburg, California--which highlights the issue of federal trademark protection vs. state trademark protection. At the center of the disagreement is both companies' use of the term "essential" on their wine labels.

Wine label dispute highlights one benefit of federal trademark protection, P.1

In our previous post, we began looking at the topic of trademark protection. As we mentioned, the United States Patent and Trademark Office is the agency responsible for federally registering trademarks, but the USPTO does not enforce trademark protection against third parties. That is the job of companies who hold a registered trademark.

Selecting a trademark: a brief look at some considerations

Branding is critical for the success of businesses in many industries, and trademark protection is an important area of law for businesses to understand when it comes to branding. Trademarks can be highly valuable, and can help propel a business into greater success when carefully selected and protected. But what exactly is a trademark?

Understanding the benefits of trademarks

Trademarks are a useful tool for businesses for a variety of reasons. We all come in contact with many trademarks on a daily basis and businesses are no exception, as a trademark can be considered another way to describe a brand. Trademarks are important to the growth of a business and its brand. As a result, it is useful for businesses to understand what trademarks are, what they do and why they are important to a business.

Houston, We Have A Law-School Trademark Problem

Brand Image Protection: The trademark UNIVERSITY OF HOUSTON LAW CENTER enjoys an excellent, nationally recognized reputation for legal education services. That's not to suggest that the SOUTH TEXAS LAW SCHOOL, which has been around for 93 years, had a national brand identity problem, but exactly why did it feel compelled to suddenly change its name to the HOUSTON COLLEGE OF LAW?

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