Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Big Trouble in Shanghai China

Interesting story in the LA Times about a trademark dispute in China involoving In-N-Out Burger - who doesn't even have any stores in China - or outside the US at all for that matter.  But when a new restaurant called CaliBurger opened in Shanghai - admittedly modeling itself on In-N-Out, the people at In-N-Out saw red and yellow.  They tracked down the owners of the copycat business in California and brought suit to prevent use of their intellectual property.  The matter settled quickly.  Moral:  policing valuable trademarks around the world is important, and there are always creative solutions.

Here's a link to the full story:  http://articles.latimes.com/2012/feb/10/business/la-fi-china-double-double-20120211

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Preclusive Effect of Federal Court Trademark Infringement Action in TTAB Opposition Proceeding

Interesting case, Mayer/Berkshire Corp. v. Berkshire Fashions, 424 F.3d 1229 (C.A.F.C. 2005); 76 USPQ2d 1310, which illustrates that a trademark infringement action in federal district court is not automatically of preclusive effect in an opposition proceeding in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Judge Newman points out that an infringement plaintiff sues for injury caused by the sale or advertising of goods or services bearing the allegedly infringing mark, whereas an opposition is based on the content of the application.  Therefore the actions may involve different transactional facts, different burdens, proofs and public policies.

Important to know.