Firm Insights

Intellectual Property

From Hoosier to Habeas: The Hazards of Legalese

  This all began a week or so ago when I was strolling past a popular…

Behind the Music Ban: Who pays the price when UMG and TikTok fight?

Behind the Music Ban: Who Pays the Price When UMG and TikTok Fight?

  Whether you are a content creator, musical artist, or someone like me who often (shamelessly)…

A Trademark for Trump’s Private Part? The Gift that Goes on Giving

A Trademark for Trump’s Private Part? The Gift that Goes on Giving

  Ready? How about a copyright claim over a farting doll named Pull My Finger Fred? Or…

Artificial “Intelligence”? A Cautionary Tale Starring the ChatBot Associate from Hell

Artificial “Intelligence”? A Cautionary Tale Starring the ChatBot Associate from Hell

  As both a trial attorney and the author of novels, I have learned to heed…

A Truly Kinky Salute to the 2023 Public Domain Day

Last year at this time I welcomed the annual Public Domain Day with an apt quote…

Is Donald Trump’s You-Know-What Too Tiny to Trademark? Trumped Again in a “Small” 1st Amendment Triumph

Ever since he rode down that Trump Tower gold escalator in June of 2015 to launch…

How’s My Post? Dial 1-800-EYE-ROLL: Life in a Fuct Trademark Universe

It started as an ordinary traffic stop—waiting for the light to turn green, thoughts drifting aimlessly,…

A Copyright Riddle: When Is Copying Not an Infringement?

Many view my fellow copyright lawyers as the Glamor Guys and Gals of the legal profession—at…

Winnie-the-Pooh and Hemingway Too: Happy Public Domain Day

“It isn’t much good having anything exciting, if you can’t share it with somebody.” Well, guess…

Trademarks, Pelotons, and Heart Attacks: The Sex in the City Trifecta

We who toil in the field of intellectual property have our own NSFW collection of cases…

Tonto, Chief Noc-A-Homa, and Oblivious Bias: Is There a Vaccine for That?

“Surrounded by dozens of hostile Indians on horseback waving guns and tomahawks, the Lone Ranger turns…

The Bernie Sanders Meme Keeps on Giving: Analyzing the Copyright and Right of Publicity Issues When an Image Goes Viral

Presumably everyone has now seen the viral meme featuring a photograph of Senator Bernie Sanders sitting…

Relief for Copyright Owners: COVID-19 Relief Bill Contains a Significant Change to the Copyright Enforcement Process

Tucked into the end-of-year COVID-19 relief Consolidated Appropriations Act enacted on December 27, 2020 was a…

This Lawsuit’s For You: Neil Young v. Donald Trump in the Copyright Infringement Ring

Rocker Neil Young has re-invented himself many times throughout his long and illustrious career – from…

Who’s a Trademark Knucklehead Now? From Covfefe to COVID-19 to Aunt Jemima

These have been strange times for all of us, and uniquely strange to those toiling in…

From COVFEFE to COVID: The Knucklehead Trademark Saga Continues

Back in July of 2017, I posted a piece entitled “Trademark Tales: Covfefe® Really?” My focus…

A Warning to Real Estate Developers: Beware of Graffiti Artists

A federal court of appeals has just upheld a $6.5 million verdict against a real estate…

#SociallySponsored: How to Comply with FTC Regulations

Following up on last year’s blog post about how easy it is for a sweepstakes (often…

Rights Clearance for Video Content: Four Key Agreements to Ease the Pain

Probably the least enjoyable part of producing audiovisual content for screens – but one of the…

“Play Gloria” (and Trademark and Copyright It, Too?)

It would be difficult now to find someone in St. Louis unaware of the “Play Gloria”…

Are We Fuct? The Supreme Court to Answer this Trademark Question

My favorite scene in the movie National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation: Christmas Eve. A knock at the…

Now We All Can Take That Road Not Taken: The Copyright Freeze Has Melted!

January 1st marked the start of a truly happy new year for those who make their…

Beers, Brands, and Brawls—When a Name is More than Just a Name

“What’s in a name?” Juliet asks in Act II of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. “A rose…

Make America Naughty Again: The Risk of Risqué Trademarks

Two years ago, in a post entitled “Is Your Brand Naughty or Nice? The New Santa…

Trademark Tales: Covfefe® Really?

A lexicographer’s task of pinning down a word’s origin can often mean hours, and even days,…

Land of the Lost Trade Secrets: A Cautionary Tale

Trade secrets are among an enterprise’s most valuable assets, often more important than its other forms…

Marx Bros. v. Warner Bros. – An Amusing Lesson in the Dangers of Trademark Bullying

A few months ago, the Journal of the Missouri Bar published a superb article by a…

Donald Trump v. Mick and Keith: You Can’t Always Play What You Want

Back in June of 2015, on the day he launched his campaign for the Republican presidential…

HUSH! Can You Keep a “Trade” Secret?

Let’s play a word association game. I say “Intellectual property.” Your three most likely responses are:…

Is Your Brand Naughty or Nice? The New Santa at the Trademark Office

I met my wife in high school. On our first date, I took her to an…