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Category: Interpretation

Justice Bryer on why booking.com shouldn’t be registered as trademark

The question at issue here is whether a term that takes the form “generic.com” is generic in the ordinary course. In the Breyer’s view, appending “.com” to a generic term ordinarily yields no meaning beyond that of its constituent parts. Because the term “Booking.com” is just such an ordinary “generic.com” term it is not eligible for trademark registration.

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USA copyright office compendium – copyrightable authorship in pantomimes

The U.S. Copyright Office may register a claim to copyright in a pantomime, provided that the work constitutes copyrightable subject matter under Section 102(a)(4) of the Copyright Act and provided that it contains a sufficient amount of original authorship.

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First amendment protection for trademark parody

VIP Products sells the “Bad Spaniels Silly Squeaker” dog toy, which resembles a bottle of Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Black Label Tennessee Whiskey, but has light-hearted, dog-related alterations. For example, the name “Jack Daniel’s” is replaced with “Bad Spaniels,” “Old No. 7” with “Old No. 2,” and alcohol content descriptions with “43% POO BY VOL.” and “100% SMELLY.”

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When copyright registration occurs?

The question this case presents: Has “registration… been made in accordance with Title 17” as soon as the claimant delivers the required application, copies of the work, and fee to the Copyright Office; or has “registration… been made” only after the Copyright Office reviews and registers the copyright?

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Section 512 report – general overview of section 512

Secondary Liability

Secondary liability doctrines enable copyright owners to bring claims against third parties that have some relationship to persons who themselves commit infringement (i.e., “direct” infringers). As the Supreme Court has noted, “although ‘the Copyright Act does not expressly render anyone liable for infringement committed by another,’ these doctrines of secondary liability emerged from common law principles and are well established in the law.”

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“Simple measures” to avoid contributory copyright infringement

Whether a data-center service provider has taken adequate “simple measures” to avoid contributory copyright infringement if it forwarded notices of such infringement to the hosting website – and every alleged infringed material was taken down.

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Whether there is a nearly per se rule against trademark protection for a “generic.com” term?

A generic name – the name of a class of products or services – is ineligible for federal trademark registration. Booking.com, an enterprise that maintains a travel-reservation website by the same name, sought federal registration of marks including the term “Booking.com.”

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Third edition of USA copyright office compendium – pantomimes

The Copyright Act recognizes pantomime as a distinct category of copyrightable authorship. The statute does not define “pantomime.” However, the legislative history states that this term has a “fairly settled meaning.”

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Report 512 executive summary

The Report is the first full analysis of whether section 512 is working effectively in achieving its aim of balancing the needs of online service providers (“OSPs”) with those of creators.

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Not every comic book, television, or motion picture character is entitled to copyright protection

Daniels is an expert on children’s emotional intelligence and development. She designed and promoted initiatives that help children cope with strong emotions like loss and trauma. The Moodsters were devised as a commercial application of this work. Daniels hired a team to produce and develop her idea under the umbrella of her new company, The Moodsters Company.

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