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In the United States, trademark rights are created through use of a mark and perfected by obtaining a federal registration with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). The entertainment industry is a global business, but many U.S. brand owners do not realize that their valuable trademark rights stop at the U.S. border. In order to be protected outside of the United States, trademark rights must be obtained separately across territories. Further, eligibility for trademark registration as well as the standard for trademark infringement differs in every country. Accordingly, entertainment companies that have potential for growth outside of the U.S. need to proactively plan for and obtain trademark protection in foreign territories. Below we discuss important differences that brand owners and their counsel should consider when seeking trademark protection domestically and abroad, filing timelines to be aware of, and provide key takeaways and pitfalls to avoid.
By Stan Soocher
In December 2018, China-based titan Tencent Music Entertainment launched a U.S. initial public offering (IPO). But the IPO resulted in an investor’s class action suit alleging TME violated federal securities laws. This is part of a trend of increasing such securities suits against foreign companies, though the U.S.
By Michael A. Mora and Alaina Lancaster
The latest cryptocurrency craze has litigators closely watching from the sidelines. Buyers of digital non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are ready to shell out hundreds of thousands of dollars, sometimes more, but when disputes start to hit the scene, litigators said there is little to no case law as precedent.
By Scott Graham
Google didn’t get an answer from the U.S. Supreme Court on whether the Java Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) it copied from Sun Microsystems were copyrightable. But it got just about everything else it could have hoped for in a decision that ended its 11-year copyright clash with Sun's successor, Oracle.
By Tom McParland
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit recently issued decisions in two closely watched copyright fair use cases involving photographs. In the…