The Powley & Gibson Blog

Developments in Intellectual Property Law

Powley & Gibson Wins Favorable Summary Judgment Decision for Client Energy Intelligence Group

Alysse E. Janet

On January 24, 2017, Powley & Gibson, P.C. defeated a summary judgment motion brought by Kayne Anderson (“Kayne”) alleging that EIG is entitled to only one award of statutory damages per compiled annual volume of EIG’s publication and a partial summary judgment motion alleging that the statute of limitations limits EIG’s damages to infringement occurring three years prior to the filing of the complaint, while at the same time prevailing on summary judgment against all of Kayne’s affirmative defenses. Read More

Abandoning Your Trademark Rights, and What You Can Do to Avoid It

Suzanna M. M. Morales

On January 17, 2017, Feld Entertainment, the parent company of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey, announced that it is closing down the circus. According to a press release, the last performance of the Ringling Bros. circus will be May 7, 2017. Feld will continue to offer other shows such as Disney on Ice and Marvel Universe LIVE!.

Since its inception in 1871 under a different name, the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus built up a valuable brand. Generations of circus goers (this author included) cherish childhood memories of lion tamers, tightrope walkers, and other death-defying feats, all orchestrated by a ringmaster in a top-hat and tails. Read More

Aereo and Its Limited Application To New Technologies

Law360, New York (February 19, 2015) — In American Broadcasting Company Inc. v. Aereo Inc., 134 S.Ct. 2498 (2014), the U.S. Supreme Court held that an Internet streaming service that allowed cord-cutting subscribers to watch broadcast television programming violated the broadcasters’ exclusive right to publicly perform their copyrighted content. Recognizing that its decision could have far-reaching and perhaps unintended implications for the technology sector, the court’s holding was explicitly limited to Aereo’s system and substantially similar technology. The majority reserved decision on how the Copyright Act would apply to questions involving cloud computing, remote storage digital video recorders, “and other novel issues not before the Court.” Several recent cases confirm that the reach of Aereo is indeed quite limited. Read More

Supreme Court to Decide Whether Issue Preclusion Applies to TTAB Findings on Likelihood of Confusion in Infringement Litigation

By Tim Buckley — On December 2, 2014, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in B & B Hardware v. Hargis Industries, which presents the following issues for resolution:

1. Whether the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board’s (TTAB or Board) finding of a likelihood of confusion precludes a party from relitigating that issue in infringement litigation, in which likelihood of confusion is an element; and
2. Whether, if issue preclusion does not apply, district courts are obliged to defer to the Board’s findings concerning likelihood of confusion absent strong evidence to rebut them. Read More