No longer a little blue bird, what will IP look like for Twitter’s new “X”?

By Ashley E. Holland

Recently Twitter announced that they are attempting to rebrand into “X”. When businesses are rebranding, there can be significant implications on intellectual property rights and certain considerations one should consider such as a trademark search, trademark registration, and copyrights. Trademarks and copyrights can cover single letters, like “X”. A trademark is used to distinguish and […]

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Taco Tuesday is for Everyone!

By Julie L. Spieker

Taco John’s has surrendered its Taco Tuesday trademark. As we reported in May, Taco Bell filed a petition with the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) to cancel a trademark for Taco Tuesday that rival chain Taco John’s had held since 1989. Along with the petition, Taco Bell launched a nationwide public relations campaign for […]

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Ninth Circuit Sides with Instagram in Case Involving Copyright of Photographers’ Works

By Sarah M.D. Luth

In a 2-1 decision, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the “server rule” which holds that websites embedding a copyrighted work do not violate the exclusive right to display that content under copyright law (17 U.S.C. § 106(5)) because they do not store or “fix” the copyrighted work in any “tangible medium of expression.” […]

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The Patented Processes for Coffee Decaffeination

By Brian D. Keppler, Ph.D.

While many of us are unable to function without the caffeine in our morning cup of coffee, not everyone can tolerate its stimulating effects. Thus, decaffeinated coffee is a blessing for those who crave the flavor but seek to limit their caffeine intake. Ludwig Roselius, a German coffee merchant, is credited with inventing the first […]

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Bill Introduced in Congress to Fix Patent Eligibility Mess

By Kirk M. Hartung

Last week, Senators Chris Coons (D-DE) and Thom Tillis (R- NC), both long time members of the intellectual property subcommittee, introduced a bill entitled “Patent Eligibility Restoration Act of 2023.” This bill, if enacted, would eliminate the historical judicially created exceptions to patent eligibility. The law on patent eligibility has been in disarray for at […]

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Supreme Court Remands Toy Story “Lotso” Case to 9th Circuit

By Melissa M. Mitchell

Following the Supreme Court’s decision earlier this month in the Jack Daniel’s dog toy trademark dispute, the Supreme Court has remanded a case against Disney to the Ninth Circuit. Lots-o’-Huggin’ Bear (aka “Lotso”), the strawberry-scented, sadistic antagonist in Disney’s Toy Story 3, is also the alleged villain of Diece-Lisa Indus., Inc. v. Disney Store USA, […]

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Washington Commanders: So You’re Saying There’s a Chance?

By Nicholas J. Krob

“Registration of the applied-for mark is refused” are not exactly words a trademark applicant wants to hear from the USPTO. But are they as daunting as they sound? Over the past week, various news outlets have been reporting how “the Washington Commanders’ trademark has been denied by the USPTO” and asking questions such as “What’s […]

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Taco Tuesday Trademark Tiff Gets Spicy

By Julie L. Spieker

Taco Bell recently launched an ad campaign featuring LeBron James and the censored phrase Taco T***day. In a commercial, Lebron repeatedly attempts to say the phrase “Taco Tuesday,” but the “Tuesday” is consistently bleeped out. He then helpfully explains that there’s a trademark on Taco Tuesday and therefore it cannot be used in a commercial, […]

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USPTO Proposes New Rules that Would Create a New Design Patent Practitioner Bar

By Joseph M. Hallman

On May 16, 2023, the USPTO published proposed rules that provide for the creation of a new design patent practitioner bar. The proposed design patent practitioner bar would provide for a new designation of practitioner able to practice before the USPTO. This newly proposed designation allows individuals to be classified as design patent practitioners wherein […]

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Gilead Defeats Federal Government Lawsuit Alleging Patent Infringement for HIV Prevention Drugs

By Julie L. Spieker

On Tuesday, May 9, 2023, a jury found that Gilead did not infringe on three patents held by the federal government, and furthermore, that the patents at issue are invalid. The government was seeking more than $1 billion in damages related to the sale of Truvada and Descovy for an HIV prevention regimen call pre-exposure […]

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