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trademark law Archives

Breaking it down: Carlton sues Fortnite over dance moves

Many will no doubt remember the geeky Carlton character from the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. While actor Alfonso Ribeiro (who played Carlton) still enjoys the fruits of his labors thanks to residuals of a show that starred Will Smith, Ribeiro has now filed a suit against Fortnite creators Epic Games for copying the Carlton Dance. The actor also claims he is now in the process of copywriting the dance.

Girl Scouts vs. Boy Scouts

The Girl Scouts of America have filed a federal lawsuit in the Southern District of New York against the Boy Scouts of America. The Girl Scouts of America (GSUSA) allege that there is brand confusion now that the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) is admitting girls, which is a practice they began in 2017. Both organizations have traditionally been afforded distinct trademark protections under the law in view of the prior gender split, but now it appears BSA's widened admittance policies have upset that peaceful coexistence.

HBO and Trump enter the parody fray

President Trump will be remembered for many things, but his use of Twitter has been an effective and groundbreaking approach to connecting with constituents and the wider world. He recently took to Twitter to announce the imminent arrival of sanctions against Iran. He did this with his own parody of Game of Thrones: using the line "Sanctions are Coming" in a font similar to the one used by the acclaimed show. There was also a picture of him with an almost Dothraki-like scowl.

Just call them Dunkin'

Dunkin' Donuts is a beloved treat or everyday fix for many. In efforts to keep up with the times, the 70-year-old company is moving forward by " from its name and plans to emphasize its coffee and healthier or at least less sugary edibles. While the company took pains to say it would still sell donuts, the loss of donuts in the name does provide some trademark food for thought.

Virginia Tourism taking aim at retailer for trademark dilution

“Virginia is for Lovers.” Most people associate this phrase with the well-known advertising campaign to attract tourists to visit the state of Virginia. In May, the Virginia Tourism Corp., the state’s tourism agency, sued Recovered Gold LLC in federal court for trademark dilution and infringement for using the phrase “Virginia is for Gun Lovers” on retail merchandise, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch. 

Trademarked: Play-doh scent, Tarzan yell and UPS brown

At our law firm, we help people and companies protect their brands through trademark registration, licensing and enforcement. People usually think of trademarks for company and product names, slogans, logos, designs, phrases or symbols that are distinctive and associated with the promotion of goods or services

Common law trademark in The Krusty Krab is making waves

A restauranteur was hoping to open a seafood restaurant chain in Texas and California called The Krusty Krab, to which the owners of the “SpongeBob SquarePants” TV series objected by filing a lawsuit for common law trademark infringement. Viacom’s cartoon character SpongeBob works at a fictional restaurant at the bottom of the sea called The Krusty Krab. 


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