California Intellectual Property Blog

Tesla Trademark Dispute in China Resolved

By Mandour & Associates, APC on August 28, 2014

teslaLos Angeles – U.S. electric automaker Tesla Motors Inc. says it has reached an amicable resolution to a trademark disagreement in China clearing the way for CEO Elon Musk’s plans to expand as the world’s largest auto market. This is the second time that Tesla has declared that the disagreement with Chinese businessman Zhan Baosheng has concluded. Baosheng had already registered the Tesla trademark prior to the California-based automaker coming to China. In January, Tesla had announced that the matter had been resolved. But then last month, Zhan filed to bring Tesla to court.  In its latest announcement, Tesla states that the issue has now been “completely resolved.” Read the rest »

Homer Simpson Hologram at Comic-Con Spurs Patent Lawsuit

By Mandour & Associates, APC on August 22, 2014

Comic ConSan Diego – Three companies have filed a patent lawsuit against 20th Century Fox claiming that a hologram of Homer Simpson from The Simpsons used during the 2014 San Diego Comic-Con infringed its patented system that projects 3D images. The plaintiffs in the case are Alki David’s Hologram USA, Musion Das Hologram and Uwe Maass. This is not the first time Hologram USA has sued. Previously, Hologram USA targeted a Michael Jackson hologram that was projected at the Billboard Music Awards. Read the rest »

Posted in: Patent Infringement

Monkey Business: Who Owns the Copyright to a Selfie Taken by a Monkey?

By Mandour & Associates, APC on August 14, 2014

monkeyLos Angeles – The general rule is that the person taking a picture owns the copyright to it. So, if a monkey takes a picture, who owns it? This is the hot debate that is brewing between British photographer David Slater and the folks at Wikimedia. According to the website, the famous 2011 image captured by a cheeky black macaque using Slater’s unattended equipment should be freely distributed. Those at Wikimedia claim that the animal’s self-portrait is not bound by copyright law. The photo was the product of Slater’s 2011 wildlife trip to Indonesia when a group of monkeys had taken over his camera for a bit during the three days he had spent with them. Read the rest »

University of Arkansas Gets Sound Trademark on Its Famous Hog Call

By Mandour & Associates, APC on August 7, 2014

pigOrange County – The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office recently granted the trademark for the sounds contained in the University of Arkansas’s “Hog Call.” The chant — “Woooooooo, Pig! Sooie! Woooooooo, Pig! Sooie! Woooooooo, Pig! Sooie! Razorbacks!” – now constitute a registered trademark. The school filed for this trademark about a year ago and as part of its application, the university also turned in a video of Razorbacks legend Frank Broyles leading fans in what has become known as the Hog Call. The Hog Call falls under the sensory trademark category, which means that it is a sound rather than a word, image, or symbol. The Application was filed in Class 041 for “Providing collegiate athletic and sporting events”. Read the rest »

49ers Quarterback Obtained Copyright Waivers for Video Games

By Mandour & Associates, APC on July 31, 2014

tattooSan Diego – The bicep tattoos on San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick will be featured on his digital incarnation in the next “Madden” video game. The Biblical verses and religious references tattooed on the arms of Kaepernick’s virtual self will be featured on screen shots from the Electronic Arts game scheduled for an August 26th release. Read the rest »

San Diego State Seeks “I Believe That We Will Win” Trademark

By Mandour & Associates, APC on July 21, 2014

basketballSan Diego – The chant adopted by the U.S. soccer team at the World Cup could soon start paying dividends for San Diego State University, which actually began using the trademark several years ago. The phrase, “I believe that we will win!” has been chanted during the school’s basketball games and has been sold on apparel. Recently, the school made the move to acquire the trademark to help prevent other similar uses. Read the rest »

Lenovo Files Patent for Wearable Technology Similar to Google Glass

By Mandour & Associates, APC on July 14, 2014

Glass-googleLos Angeles – Lenovo has filed a U.S. patent for a head-mounted wearable, which could potentially compete against the much-talked-about Google Glass. The patent is for wearable eyewear that has touch-based navigation, light-pump video-on-demand displays on dual screens, as well as a video and audio recorder. The displays are meant to give users “an augmented reality display” on the screen featured in their glasses. Read the rest »

Posted in: Patent Registration

Aereo Loses Supreme Court Copyright Battle to Networks’ Delight

By Mandour & Associates, APC on July 8, 2014

cableOrange County – The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that Aereo TV service, the start-up tech firm that distributes local television signals over the Internet, is a copyright infringement. The case, ABC v. Aereo, which has generated much controversy, culminated in a 6-3 decision this week will also mark the end of this small company. Aereo launched about two years ago as the cheaper option for consumers who are paying high prices for cable and satellite television. Read the rest »

Washington Redskins Trademark Cancelled, Held to be Disparaging

By Mandour & Associates, APC on July 1, 2014

Closeup of American Football on FieldLos Angeles – A recent ruling by the U.S. Trademark Trial and Appeal Board that the NFL’s Washington Redskins nickname is “disparaging” will provide a shot in the arm for those who have been vocal advocates of changing the team’s name.  The ruling no doubt increases the financial and political pressure for a movement that has been gaining momentum over the last two years.  The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board voted 2-1 in support of the name change and even President Barack Obama has weighed in on the topic encouraging the team to consider changing the name. Read the rest »

Tesla Allows Others To Use Patent Portfolio

By Mandour & Associates, APC on June 26, 2014

teslaOrange County – In what has been hailed as a bold and unprecedented move, Tesla Motors is opening its patent portfolio in hopes of encouraging other automakers to create new electric vehicles. The company’s CEO, Elon Musk, said Tesla will not pursue patent lawsuits against anyone who wants to use its electric car technology “in good faith.” Musk says the “wall of patents” has been removed “in the spirit of the open source movement, for the advancement of electric vehicle technology.” Musk made the announcement at the Palo Alto-based company’s annual shareholder meeting this month. Read the rest »

Posted in: Patent Registration