In denying a bid to register "Trump Too Small" as a trademark for apparel, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously concluded Thursday there was no free speech violation. But Justice Clarence Thomas' opinion leaning on tradition to justify prohibiting names as marks without an individual's consent left some justices and attorneys dissatisfied.
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Intellectual Property
SUNDAY, JUNE 16, 2024 Law360 iOS App Law360 Android App Follow Law360 on Facebook Follow Law360 on LinkedIn Follow Law360 on Twitter

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Analysis

'Trump Too Small' Opinion Leaves Some Justices, Attys Vexed

By Ivan Moreno

In denying a bid to register "Trump Too Small" as a trademark for apparel, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously concluded Thursday there was no free speech violation. But Justice Clarence Thomas' opinion leaning on tradition to justify prohibiting names as marks without an individual's consent left some justices and attorneys dissatisfied.

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Justices Say 'Trump Too Small' TM Denial No Speech Violation

By Ivan Moreno

The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday concluded "Trump Too Small" cannot be a registered trademark because it would violate a federal prohibition on using a living person's name without their consent, ruling against a California attorney who said using the phrase should be considered protected political speech.

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Teva Wins Pause Of Order Ousting Patents From Orange Book

By Carla Baranauckas

A New Jersey federal judge ordered on Thursday a 30-day stay of his Monday ruling that a handful of patents covering Teva-brand asthma inhalers were improperly listed in the federal Orange Book, saying he wanted the matter to reach the Federal Circuit in the most orderly way possible.

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4th Circ. Revives Bacardi Fight Over Expired TM Renewal

By Hayley Fowler

The Fourth Circuit on Thursday revived Bacardi's lawsuit challenging the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office's decision to renew an expired trademark registration for Havana Club rum, finding such registration renewals can be reviewed by the courts.

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Samsung Wants $26M Fees In IP Case Ended By Misconduct

By Dani Kass

Samsung told a Texas federal judge that it plans to ask for about $26 million in attorney fees after he threw out infringement litigation that hinged on confidential documents that he ruled were stolen by the tech giant's former employees.

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Meta Facing Complaint Over Plans To Train AI With User Data

By Jamie Lennox

A Norwegian consumer protection group has hit Meta with a legal challenge over its plans to deploy its users' data — including images and posts — to train artificial intelligence models.

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GOP Lawmakers Want China Patent Data Amid Tech Pact Talks

By Dorothy Atkins

Republican lawmakers are urging the U.S. Commerce Department to provide a full accounting of whether the U.S. government has funded research that resulted in Chinese patents, arguing they need the data to assess potential national security risks as the Biden administration negotiates a new science and technology agreement with China.

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House Re-Ups Bill Targeting Counterfeit Online Goods

By Adam Lidgett

Federal lawmakers should approve a proposal to tackle the explosion of counterfeit goods sold online that are harmful to the safety of consumers, according to the leader of the U.S. House of Representatives' subcommittee that centers on intellectual property issues.

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IP Forecast: Cooley Atty Faces DQ Bid Over Past Patent Work

By Andrew Karpan

A prominent Cooley LLP lawyer will face questions next week in a Philadelphia courtroom over her work a decade ago at her former firm defending a cloud software startup that is now suing a Cooley client. Here's a spotlight on that case — plus all the other major intellectual property matters on deck in the coming week.

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PATENTS

Full Fed. Circ. Rejects Rehearing Bids In Xifaxan Case

By Adam Lidgett

The Federal Circuit has shot down bids for rehearing filed by both sides in a case involving an April decision that prevents an Alvogen unit from releasing a generic version of Bausch Health's diarrhea and brain disorder drug Xifaxan until 2029.

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Equipment Maker Looks To Chill Ice Creamery's Use Of Its IP

By Rae Ann Varona

A company that holds a patent for making ice cream using cryogenics has accused a Florida franchisor of falsely claiming to operate under a patent, saying in Washington federal court that the dessert purveyor has even been charging franchisees an "intellectual property fee."

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COPYRIGHTS & TRADEMARKS

1st Circ. Urged To Back TM Loss For Family Of Late MLB Star

By Brian Dowling

A Puerto Rico agency planning a sports district in honor of late Major League Baseball Hall of Famer Roberto Clemente has pressed the First Circuit to uphold the agency's dismissal from a trademark lawsuit filed by the baseball legend's family alleging unauthorized use of his name and likeness.

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Jury Finds Infringement In Chart Copyright Case

By Adam Lidgett

A Washington federal jury on Thursday found that a software company infringed copyright registrations for a teaching chart, awarding leadership consulting company Enterprise Management Ltd. $8,000 but finding that the infringement was not willful.

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Chegg Directors, Auditor Beat Academic Cheating Lawsuit

By Jeff Montgomery

Delaware's Court of Chancery has issued a failing grade to a stockholder of online book and study aid giant Chegg Inc. who accused the company of operating as a cheating service for students, dismissing the case for lack of supporting facts.

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TRADE SECRETS

Dechert Backs Special Master In Airline Mogul's Hacking Suit

By Hayley Fowler

Dechert LLP has said a special master got it right when she largely denied an airline tycoon's numerous bids to access allegedly privileged information in his suit seeking to prove an international hacking conspiracy, asking a North Carolina federal judge to affirm the decision.

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Canadian Businessman Cops To Stealing Tesla Trade Secrets

By Lauren Berg

A Canadian businessman residing in China pled guilty in New York federal court to scheming to sell secret battery manufacturing technology that belongs to Tesla, the U.S. Department of Justice announced Thursday.

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LICENSING

Theater Co. Cites Prior Ruling Against Cruise Biz In IP Suit

By David Minsky

A Louisiana theatrical production company is urging a Florida state court to rule in its favor on damages in a lawsuit alleging Celebrity Cruises Inc. continued to use intellectual property beyond licensing agreements, saying the issue was already ruled on in a previous lawsuit between the same parties.

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BANKRUPTCY

Express Picks Stalking Horse Bidder As Ch. 11 Buyer

By Vince Sullivan

A stalking horse bidder offering $136 million in cash for the assets of clothing retailer Express Inc. will be the buyer in the debtor's competitive sale process, after its offer was deemed to be the only qualified bid to acquire the assets as a going-concern.

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EXPERT ANALYSIS

Counterfeits At The Olympics Pose IP Challenges

With the 2024 Olympic Games quickly approaching, the proliferation of counterfeit Olympic merchandise poses a difficult challenge to the protection of intellectual property rights and the preservation of the Olympic brand's integrity, says Kimiya Shams at Devialet.

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8th Circ. Insurance Ruling Spotlights Related-Claims Defenses

The Eighth Circuit’s recent Dexon v. Travelers ruling — that the insurer must provide a defense despite the policy’s related-acts provision — provides guidance for how policyholders can overcome related-acts defenses, say Geoffrey Fehling and Jae Lynn Huckaba at Hunton.

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Series

Playing Chess Makes Me A Better Lawyer

There are many ways that chess skills translate directly into lawyer skills, but for me, the bigger career lessons go beyond the direct parallels — playing chess has shown me the value of seeing gradual improvement in and focusing deep concentration on a nonwork endeavor, says attorney Steven Fink.

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LEGAL INDUSTRY

All The World's A Stage For Tony-Nominated Dechert Co-Chair

By Tracey Read

Mark Thierfelder is not only a Dechert LLP co-chair and partner; he’s also a Tony-nominated Broadway producer up for an award this June 16. Here, Law360 Pulse talks to Thierfelder on how he balances his legal work with his creative pursuits.

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Littler Aims To End Theft Suit After $1M Deal With Ex-Firm Atty

By Lynn LaRowe

Littler Mendelson PC this week moved to drop a lawsuit accusing a former associate of stealing confidential documents following a settlement in which the firm agreed to pay her nearly $1 million, though a separate, newer case in which the lawyer accuses Littler of violating that deal remains open.

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McDermott Says Financial Firm Owes $800K In Atty Fees

By Madison Arnold

McDermott Will & Emery LLP says it is owed more than $800,000 in legal fees for representing a financial firm's employee in a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission investigation and a lawsuit by his former employer.

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Real Estate Broker Claims Lewis Brisbois Breached Deal

By Madison Arnold

A real estate broker who had exclusive rights to represent Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith LLP has slammed the firm with a breach of contract suit in California state court, alleging its abrupt termination of their deal will cost him millions in commissions.

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Goetz Fitzpatrick To Merge With Platzer Swergold Next Year

By Tracey Read

Goetz Fitzpatrick LLP and Platzer Swergold Goldberg Katz & Jaslow LLP will combine forces next year to create a single New York City firm.

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Update On Ex-George Mason Prof's Suits Over Sex Allegations

By Aebra Coe

After two women came forward last August accusing former BigLaw partner, FTC commissioner and George Mason University law professor Joshua D. Wright of sexual improprieties with students and direct reports, a number of additional accusations and lawsuits followed. Here are updates on the litigation and everything else surrounding the allegations.

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Analysis

Blistering Dissents Belie Justices' Penchant For Consensus

By Katie Buehler

Thirteen days into June, the U.S. Supreme Court had recorded one of the highest rates of unanimous decisions in the past four decades. But the era of historic consensus was tarnished a bit Friday when the court issued three split decisions and two scathing dissents highlighting how much the nine justices differ.

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Senate Passes Bill For State, Local Judge Security

By Courtney Bublé

The U.S. Senate has passed a bill unanimously to better protect state and local judges from threats amid "unacceptable attacks" on the judiciary.

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Burford Bound To Sysco And Pilgrim's Unsigned Chicken Deal

By Lauraann Wood

An Illinois federal judge on Friday rejected a Burford subsidiary's bid to block a global protein price-fixing settlement that Pilgrim's Pride and Sysco memorialized through email but never signed on paper, saying it's clear the parties reached a material agreement.

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Law360's Legal Lions Of The Week

By Kevin Penton

Williams & Connolly LLP and Littler Mendelson PC lead this week's edition of Law360's Legal Lions, after the U.S. Supreme Court made it tougher for the National Labor Relations Board to win injunctions against employers.

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GC Cheat Sheet: The Hottest Corporate News Of The Week

By Michele Gorman

The governor of Vermont vetoed a legislative proposal that would have given consumers not only new data privacy rights but also the rare opportunity to sue large businesses for certain violations, and a multipart Delaware General Corporation Law amendment that would let boards cede some governance rights to big stockholders sailed through the state's Senate without debate or an opposing vote. These are among the stories in corporate legal news you may have missed in the past week.

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UK Litigation Roundup: Here's What You Missed In London

By Laura Stewart Liberty

This past week in London has seen toy company Jellycat hit supermarket Aldi with an intellectual property claim, AIG start proceedings against firefighting foam company Angus International Safety Group, and the Solicitors Regulation Authority file a legal claim against the Post Office amid the ongoing Horizon IT scandal. Here, Law360 looks at these and other new claims in the U.K.

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LAW FIRMS IN TODAY'S NEWS

Arnold & Porter

Axinn Veltrop

Baute Crochetiere

Bilzin Sumberg

Binnall Law Group

Brooks Pierce

Brown Rudnick

Bunsow De Mory

Capsticks Solicitors LLP

Cohen Milstein

Conrad & Scherer

Cooley LLP

Covington & Burling

Cravath Swaine

Dechert LLP

Fenwick & West

Finnegan

Foster Garvey

Frankfurt Kurnit

Freshfields

Fried Frank

Gibson Dunn

Gillam Smith

Goetz Fitzpatrick

Goodwin Procter

Gupta Wessler

Hamlins LLP

Hancock Daniel

Heyman Enerio

Hill Dickinson

Hirschler

Hogan Lovells

Hunton Andrews

Jones Day

K&L Gates

Kaplan Hecker

Keker Van Nest & Peters

Kelley Drye

Kellogg Hansen

King & Spalding

Kirkland & Ellis

Klehr Harrison

Law Office of Steven J. Fink PLLC

Lewis Brisbois

Littler Mendelson

Loeb & Loeb

Lowe Graham

Lynn Pinker

McCarter & English

McDermott Will & Emery

McKool Smith

Miller & Chevalier

Mintz Truppman

Morgan Lewis

Morris Nichols

Nelson Mullins

Norris McLaughlin

O'Melveny & Myers

PV Law LLP

Parker Poe

Pearson Warshaw

Pillsbury & Coleman

Pinsent Masons

Platzer Swergold

Pomerantz LLP

Procopio Cory

Quinn Emanuel

Reed Smith

Ropes & Gray

Ryan Law Partners

Sanchez Fischer

Searcy Denney

Seeger Weiss

Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP

Skadden Arps

St John & St John

Stone Conroy LLC

Vasseghi Law

Walsh Pizzi

Williams & Connolly

Willkie Farr

Wilson Browne Solicitors

Wilson Sonsini

Winston & Strawn

Womble Bond

Zaiwalla & Co

gunnercooke LLP

COMPANIES IN TODAY'S NEWS

Aldi GmbH & Co. KG

Alvogen Group Inc.

Amazon.com Inc.

American International Group Inc.

Amneal Pharmaceuticals Inc.

AstraZeneca PLC

Bacardi Ltd.

Bausch Health Cos. Inc.

Bloomberg Industry Group

Bonobos

Bregal Investments Inc.

ByteDance Ltd.

Celebrity Cruises Inc.

Chegg Inc.

Cisco Systems Inc.

Computer & Communications Industry Association

Delaware State Bar Association

Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Ltd.

Delta Air Lines Inc.

Ferrari SpA

Google LLC

Harvard University

Heathrow Airport Holdings Ltd.

Instagram Inc.

International Olympic Committee

Jaguar Land Rover Ltd.

Johnson Controls International PLC

Kuwait Finance House KSC

Lambda Legal Defense & Educational Fund

London Stock Exchange Group PLC

Major League Baseball Inc.

Major League Soccer LLC

Marks & Spencer

Mercedes-Benz USA LLC

Meta Platforms Inc.

Microsoft Corp.

Moelis & Co.

National District Attorneys Association

National Rifle Association of America

New York University

Novo Nordisk A S

OSI Systems Inc.

Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development

Pearson PLC

Pfizer Inc.

Pilgrim's Pride Corp.

PowerSchool Group LLC

Princeton University

Rapiscan Systems Inc.

RedRidge Finance Group LLC

Rolls-Royce Motor Cars

Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd.

Salix Pharmaceuticals, Ltd.

Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd.

Sanderson Farms Inc.

Simon Property Group Inc.

Solicitors Regulation Authority Ltd.

Southwest Airlines Co.

Starbucks Corp.

Sysco Corp.

Tesla Inc.

Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd.

The New York Times Co.

The Procter & Gamble Co.

The Travelers Cos. Inc.

TikTok Inc.

TransPerfect Global Inc.

Twitter Inc.

Veeva Systems Inc.

Volkswagen AG

WHP Global

YouTube Inc.

GOVERNMENT AGENCIES IN TODAY'S NEWS

California Labor Commissioner's Office

Congressional Research Service

Dallas County, Texas

Delaware Court of Chancery

European Union

European Union Intellectual Property Office

Federal Bureau of Investigation

Federal Trade Commission

Food and Drug Administration

House of Lords of the United Kingdom

National Labor Relations Board

Puerto Rico Department of Justice

State Justice Institute

U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of New York

U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Virginia

U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit

U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit

U.S. Customs and Border Protection

U.S. Department of Commerce

U.S. Department of Justice

U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware

U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota

U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois

U.S. District Court for the Western District of Washington

U.S. House of Representatives

U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission

U.S. Senate

U.S. Supreme Court