Lawrence G. Townsend Intellectual Property Lawyer
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January 2018 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.

7 steps to protect your trade secrets

It could be a scene from almost any of the Mission Impossible movies. The man--wearing all black, of course--plummets down the air shaft until his harness stops him mere inches from the floor. In a flash, he's typing away on a nearby computer terminal. After a tense moment, the man announces into his headset, "I'm in."

Court says colorful language not a bar to trademark registration

A couple of federal court decisions - one of them from the highest court in the land - may well be prompting some to wonder where the line is now when it comes to what can and cannot be federally registered as a trademark.

Could the mark 'Drive Wise' collide with another 'DriveWise' mark?

Allstate first began using its registered trademark "DriveWise" in December 2010 and has used it continuously since then. Kia Motors Corporation filed its first trademark application in 2016 for the phrase "Drive Wise" as a stylized design mark.

'Grumpy Cat' owners sue for violation of coffee licensing deal

"She's not going to be passed around," said the federal judge before "Grumpy Cat" was brought into the California courtroom. She sat in a cat carrier as she awaited her owner's testimony in a licensing violation case. She is not expected to testify.

Should I use a digital watermark on my work?

Are you analog or are you digital? These days, it's easy to find individuals in one or the other camp. Some dwell in both worlds. If you are someone who does design work, you want to protect your work from theft, misuse or use without your permission.

The line between parody and copyright infringement

You probably know that you're not allowed to use a copyrighted song in your Youtube video. Such an action would be a violation of intellectual property protections. But why do roasts of popular songs on SNL get away with using other people's creative works? Today we'll discuss an important concept in intellectual property law: the fair use defense.

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