Trademarks

What’s in a name? Litigation, if it’s Square Donuts

July 18, 2016
Dave Stafford
A federal judge last week kept alive a lawsuit filed by a northern Indiana maker and seller of Square Donuts against Square Donuts Inc., the Terre Haute-based company that sells its trademarked treats mostly across the four corners of southern Indiana.
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IU Maurer's Center for IP Research seeks promising clients for clinic

July 13, 2016
Marilyn Odendahl
Launched in January 2015, the intellectual property clinic is part of the law school’s Center for Intellectual Property Research. It has offered pro bono legal services to more than 80 inventors, entrepreneurs and small businesses with roughly half the work related to patents.
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Apple loses fight to keep 'iPhone' label off Chinese wallets

May 4, 2016
 Bloomberg News
Apple Inc. lost its fight to keep the “iPhone” name exclusive to its products with a Beijing court deciding a little-known accessories maker can use the label for a range of wallets and purses.
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Davee: Initial trademark considerations when advising clients

April 20, 2016
When helping the client form their business, there are several items that should be discussed early on, particularly if the client has any desire to pursue federal trademark registration.
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Bagel company sues gas station over trademark infringement

March 29, 2016
Scott Roberts
The Great American Bagel Enterprises Inc. has filed suit in federal court against The Great American Eagle after Great American Eagle recycled an old sign of the bagel company and used it on the front of its store.
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2 Indiana bakeries feud over 4-sided doughnuts

March 28, 2016
 Associated Press
Two Indiana bakeries share a love for four-sided doughnuts, but one of them believes there is room for only one square doughnut-maker.
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Texas A&M, Colts settle '12th Man' trademark suit

February 18, 2016
 Associated Press
Texas A&M University says it has reached a settlement agreement with the Indianapolis Colts in the school's federal lawsuit it says was meant to protect its "12th Man" trademark from infringement.
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Bacardi protests renewal of Cuba's rum trademark in the US

February 1, 2016
 Associated Press
Bacardi wants to know more about a recent U.S. government decision allowing Cuba to sell its Havana Club rum in America when the U.S. trade embargo ends.
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2 recent cases in federal court showcase trademark treachery

December 16, 2015
Dave Stafford
A steel giant’s trade name was used to misrepresent business deals with the intent to procure millions of dollars worth of machinery and financing, and an Amish-country spice maker alleges a local rival is ripping off its registered trademark. These two recent cases in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana illustrate the difficulties in policing registered marks on intellectual property, but the cases also show the means of recovery at rights holders’ disposal when their IP marks are violated.
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Texas A&M sues NFL's Colts for '12th Man' trademark offense

November 13, 2015
 Associated Press
Texas A&M University filed a federal lawsuit Thursday against the NFL's Indianapolis Colts that university officials say is meant to protect their 12th Man trademark.
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Redskins: US has registered plenty of 'offensive' trademarks

November 4, 2015
 Associated Press
As the Washington Redskins defend their federal trademark registration, they argue in court papers that the government has registered plenty of companies with offensive names.
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Matchmaking service unveiled for Indiana inventors and IP attorneys

September 2, 2015
Marilyn Odendahl
Indiana University Maurer School of Law is getting into the matchmaking business.The school’s Center for Intellectual Property Research has opened a patent hub which will connect inventors with IP attorneys willing to do pro bono work.
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Judge seats accused Best Chairs trademark infringer in Indiana

August 5, 2015
Dave Stafford
Online merchants who have sold more than $6 million worth of chairs with names that allegedly infringe on a longtime Indiana manufacturer’s trademarks will have to answer the claims in federal court in Evansville, a judge ruled Tuesday.
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Judge admonishes losing counsel in long-running litigation

January 29, 2015
Dave Stafford
A federal judge admonished a lawyer Wednesday whose clients were found to have abused the process in prosecuting a trademark infringement suit against a similar wine-and-art business.
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Lucky, plucky owners reclaim and renew famous Hoosier trademarks

December 17, 2014
Dave Stafford
Entrepreneurs enjoying sweet successes and heady times with the resurgence of their retro products took varied paths to claim the rights to bring back brands with deep Hoosier roots. The new owners of Roselyn Bakery, Choc-Ola chocolate drink and Champagne Velvet beer got dormant brands back on store shelves by capitalizing on trademarks that had disappeared from the marketplace but retained a certain cachet.
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Purdue balks at use of its brand in panned film

August 25, 2014
 Associated Press
Purdue University officials are asking their legal counsel to look into a new movie that makes frequent references to the school despite its refusal to grant permission to use official trademarks and logos.
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Security software maker loses trademark case against Warner Bros.

August 14, 2014
Jennifer Nelson
The Plymouth, Indiana-based security software maker that sued Warner Bros. after the movie “The Dark Knight Rises” referred to hacking software as “clean slate” lost its trademark infringement case before the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals. The company, which has a program called “Clean Slate,” claimed its sales dropped after the movie came out.
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Decision against travel bureau over domain name draws sharp dissent on appeal

July 30, 2014
Dave Stafford
An Indiana Court of Appeals judge recently wrote that her colleagues who formed the majority to rule against a local tourism board were “out of touch,” and she suggested a case over an Internet domain name presented a novel issue that no court in the country has addressed.
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Trademark board rules against Redskins name

June 18, 2014
 Associated Press
A federal trademark board ruled Wednesday that the Washington Redskins nickname is "disparaging of Native Americans" and that the team's trademark protections should be canceled, a decision that applies new financial and political pressure on the team to change its name.
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Mom and pop store can’t proceed pro se in Coach trademark lawsuit

February 26, 2014
Dave Stafford
The owners of a southern Indiana general store accused in a federal lawsuit of selling knockoff high-end Coach-brand products may not represent pro se their incorporated general store named in the suit.
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James Dean estate sues Twitter over ‘@JamesDean’

February 11, 2014
Dave Stafford
The estate of legendary Indiana film star James Dean has sued Twitter, claiming the Internet giant permitted the unauthorized personal Twitter account @JamesDean.
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Kraft wins in food fight with Cracker Barrel

December 4, 2013
Dave Stafford
A federal appeals court ruled recently that savvy consumers might be confused if food branded Cracker Barrel Old Country Store was sold in grocery stores that carry Kraft’s Cracker Barrel brand cheese. Turns out even a law professor who teaches a course on trademarks and unfair competition might be fooled.
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Kraft prevails in Cracker Barrel fight

November 15, 2013
Dave Stafford
Not coming soon to a grocery store near you: food products from Cracker Barrel Old Country Store restaurants.
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Irked judge in tanning trademark dispute: ‘This is a busy Court’

September 27, 2013
Dave Stafford
A federal judge warned a tanning product maker and lawyers defending it from a trademark infringement claim that they were dangerously close to getting burned.
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Court reverses hotel’s cybersquatting conviction

April 15, 2013
Jennifer Nelson
A dispute over who could use the designation “Visit Michigan City LaPorte” led to a legal battle between LaPorte County’s visitors bureau and an area hotel-resort, with the trial court ruling in favor of the visitors bureau. But the Indiana Court of Appeals reversed Monday, ruling the bureau didn’t prove it held a valid and protectable trademark.
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  1. What a fine article, thank you! I can testify firsthand and by detailed legal reports (at end of this note) as to the dire consequences of rejecting this truth from the fine article above: "The inclusion and expansion of this right [to jury] in Indiana’s Constitution is a clear reflection of our state’s intention to emphasize the importance of every Hoosier’s right to make their case in front of a jury of their peers." Over $20? Every Hoosier? Well then how about when your very vocation is on the line? How about instead of a jury of peers, one faces a bevy of political appointees, mini-czars, who care less about due process of the law than the real czars did? Instead of trial by jury, trial by ideological ordeal run by Orwellian agents? Well that is built into more than a few administrative law committees of the Ind S.Ct., and it is now being weaponized, as is revealed in articles posted at this ezine, to root out post moderns heresies like refusal to stand and pledge allegiance to all things politically correct. My career was burned at the stake for not so saluting, but I think I was just one of the early logs. Due, at least in part, to the removal of the jury from bar admission and bar discipline cases, many more fires will soon be lit. Perhaps one awaits you, dear heretic? Oh, at that Ind. article 12 plank about a remedy at law for every damage done ... ah, well, the founders evidently meant only for those damages done not by the government itself, rabid statists that they were. (Yes, that was sarcasm.) My written reports available here: Denied petition for cert (this time around): http://tinyurl.com/zdmawmw Denied petition for cert (from the 2009 denial and five year banishment): http://tinyurl.com/zcypybh Related, not written by me: Amicus brief: http://tinyurl.com/hvh7qgp

  2. Justice has finally been served. So glad that Dr. Ley can finally sleep peacefully at night knowing the truth has finally come to the surface.

  3. While this right is guaranteed by our Constitution, it has in recent years been hampered by insurance companies, i.e.; the practice of the plaintiff's own insurance company intervening in an action and filing a lien against any proceeds paid to their insured. In essence, causing an additional financial hurdle for a plaintiff to overcome at trial in terms of overall award. In a very real sense an injured party in exercise of their right to trial by jury may be the only party in a cause that would end up with zero compensation.

  4. Why in the world would someone need a person to correct a transcript when a realtime court reporter could provide them with a transcript (rough draft) immediately?

  5. This article proved very enlightening. Right ahead of sitting the LSAT for the first time, I felt a sense of relief that a score of 141 was admitted to an Indiana Law School and did well under unique circumstances. While my GPA is currently 3.91 I fear standardized testing and hope that I too will get a good enough grade for acceptance here at home. Thanks so much for this informative post.

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