Monday, July 31, 2006

Net, Gross, and How Money Disappears

In response to this NYT article about the principals involved in the film Crash and their profit participation, the Hot Blog hypothetically disects the distribution.


Trademark Squatters in China

Marketplace reports on trademark squatters in China registering the PBS logo.


Sunday, July 30, 2006

4 out of 5 say ICANN still needs oversight

No end in sight for the the DoC's oversight of ICANN. Just another chapter in the ongoing debate over the effectiveness of ICANN, and the role the U.S. should play in regulation and control.


Saturday, July 29, 2006

New Text Mining Technique Could Make E-Discovery More Efficient

A new text mining technique has been developed by researchers at the University of California, Irvine. If it lives up to the hype it could make e-discovery much more efficient. (via Slashdot)


Friday, July 28, 2006

The Scorned Screenwriter's New Best Friend

The Times profiles attorney John Marder, who has made a name for himself representing screenwriters, and others, in their claims against the studios whom they believe listened to their pitch and then stole their ideas. Marder is capitalizing on his success in Grosso v. Miramax, in which the 9th Circuit did not throw out the writer's claim that his pitch to the studio created an implied contract between the two parties. With an implied contract theory backing up a more difficult to prove copyright claim, writers appear to have significantly more leverage in these sorts of cases. While this has certainly lead to more claims being brought, it remains to be seen if it will lead to more successful claims.

I like this last from Marder: “There’s a problem with the system when every time the studios release a movie, they get a bunch of claims,” he said. “There can’t be that many crazy people in the country.”

Or can there?

Update: William Patry provided way, way more detail about all this yesterday.


Thursday, July 27, 2006

Who Owns the Copyright in a Contract?

When you draft a contract for your client, who owns the copyright in that contract ? You, the attorney? Your firm? The client? Ken Adams explores the question. But wait, you say, is a contract entitled to copyright protection in the first place? Well hey, he's discussed that as well.


Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Keyword legislation

On Tuesday the House approved a bill that would make it a federal felony to use innocuous keywords like "Barbie" or "Furby" but actually feature sexual content on websites. The Senate had previously approved the Bill with a voice vote. President Bush is likely to sign the Bill on Thursday.


Tuesday, July 25, 2006

You, Me, Dupree, and Steely Dan

This speaks for itself. Hollywood writer's appropriating ideas and names from songs.....never! Funny stuff.



PTO now accepting PDFs for certain response to office action submissions. This excludes mark image files.


EURid Suspends Domains and Sues Registrars

EURid suspends 74 000 .eu domain names and sues 400 registrars for breach of contract.


Monday, July 24, 2006

No Ordinary Counterfeit-Supernotes

Excellent story in yesterday's Sunday Times about the counterfeiting of US currency by North Korea.


Sunday, July 23, 2006

Sneakers, Recruiters, Blue-Chip Prospects, and of course Money

Bob Hohler's investigative story on the relationship between the athletic shoe industry, recruiters, and young blue-chip basketball prospects. First in a three-part series on the sneaker industry's influence on amateur basketball in New England.


Thursday, July 20, 2006

Is "We're So Sorry Uncle Leo" Next?

Offered without comment.


Patent Trolling for Fun and Profit

Interesting, in-depth profile of Raymond Niro, known to many as the first patent troll. The upshot: the ethics of trolling may appear questionable, and the dollar amounts are certainly staggering, but it can be a lifesaver for small-time inventors. And as a practice, it's here to stay.

Oddly, of the many companies discussed in the article, two are named "Schneider" and one is named "Schreiber."


Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Gotta Earn That Anti-Piracy Badge

Chinese Boy Scouts have been recruited into the fight against copyright infringement. This raises a number of questions, foremost among them being: there are Boy Scouts in China? Who knew? Are there Girl Scouts as well? Do they sell cookies? If so, what kind?


Monday, July 17, 2006

Friendster Issued Patent for Aspects of Social Networking

Friendster issued patent on certain aspects of social networking. [T]he patent refers to a “system, method, and apparatus for connecting users in an online computer system based on their relationships within social networks." “It’s way too early to say” whether the company would pursue licenses and litigation from its competitors, Friendster President Kent Lindstrom told “We’ll do what we can to protect our intellectual property.”


Friday, July 14, 2006

The Empire Strikes Out

If the RIAA is going to go after alleged downloaders with such gusto, you'd think they'd be prepared to provide every relevant detail of the infringing activity. As it turns out, not so much. And as a result, they've been ordered to pay Debbie Foster's attorneys fees.


Wednesday, July 12, 2006

IP on eBay

Musician Katherine Schell, who is apparently an up-and-comer of some note, is auctioning off an exclusive, one-year license for the "commercial rights" to her song "The Gravity Situation" on eBay. The language of the license is not made available, so who knows exactly what the winner bidder will get. Still, interesting move from a buzz-making perspective.


Tuesday, July 11, 2006

UCC or Restatements?

Tom Field on uniform laws and Restatements as guides to federal law.


Hail storm

And then there was hail.


Friday, July 07, 2006

Louis Vuitton v. Dooney & Bourke

Back to the District Court with instructions favorable to LVMH. In rehearing the case, the district court "should consider the precise trademark claimed by (Louis Vuitton) and whether, under market conditions and when viewed sequentially, Vuitton can prove likelihood of confusion between its Multicolore mark and the pattern of Dooney & Bourke's It-Bag," the circuit judges wrote.


Tuesday, July 04, 2006


The Trident Growth Fund has concluded an unsuccessful ebay auction for the CRAZY EDDIE trademark and domain name. The firm's founder, high school dropout Crazy Eddie Antar, started with a lone store in Coney Island and built an empire of 43 stores before going bankrupt in 1989 after a massive stock fraud case. Some details of the stock fraud case can be found here. 'Crazy' Eddie Antar was termed by US Attorney Michael Chertoff "The Darth Vader of Capitalism". (via Metafilter)