Trademark Bullying: Cease and Desist and Litigation Tactics in the Battle for Brand Protection

Recording of a 90-minute premium CLE webinar with Q&A


Conducted on Thursday, January 16, 2020

Recorded event now available

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Program Materials

This CLE webinar will provide guidance for counsel to trademark owners to understand trademark bullying in the context of brand protection. The panel will outline approaches to fight trademark bullies or to respond to being accused of being a trademark bully.

Description

Increasingly, trademark challenges include bullying claims. Social media facilitates public disputes by targets of trademark enforcement efforts as to whether the trademark claims are justified. The backlash potential is significant if trademark owners are not engaged in legitimate brand protection.

When does aggressively enforcing a trademark cross the line and go too far? The price of such actions can be hefty. Did McDonald's lose its EU trademark for the Big Mac in 2019 as a consequence of its alleged bullying tactics against an Irish fast-food chain that offers the "Mighty Mac"? Although ultimately decided on procedural grounds, Supermac sought cancellation of McDonald's mark in retaliation for McDonald's aggressive enforcement actions.

Are existing tools adequate to defend against trademark bullying? Is new legislation needed to address the problem?

Maintaining brand reputation is a top concern for brand owners. As a result, counsel must carefully craft communication and cease and desist letters to minimize the risk that the brand owner will be deemed a bully for enforcing its trademarks.

Listen as our authoritative panel of trademark practitioners examines trademark bullying and the current legal landscape. The panel will offer strategies for dealing with trademark bullies and protecting your brand without being a bully.

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Outline

  1. Current landscape
    1. Public relations and social media influence
    2. USPTO
    3. Court treatment
  2. Strategies for combating trademark bullying
  3. Best practices for legitimate trademark enforcement programs

Benefits

The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • How are the courts treating trademark bullies?
  • What steps can a trademark owner take and what are the existing tools for counsel when a trademark owner believes it is the target of a trademark bully?
  • What are best practices for developing and maintaining legitimate trademark enforcement?

Faculty

Baird, Stephen
Stephen R. Baird

Shareholder
Greenberg Traurig

Mr. Baird works with clients to address their most difficult trademark problems. He provides strategic guidance on...  |  Read More

Grinvald, Leah
Leah Chan Grinvald

Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Professor of Law
Suffolk University Law School

As a member of the faculty at Suffolk Law and Boston University School of Law, she teaches courses in Trademarks,...  |  Read More

Kim, Candice
Candice E. Kim

Shareholder
Greenberg Traurig

Ms. Kim focuses her practice on the clearance, procurement, maintenance, enforcement, licensing, and monetization of...  |  Read More

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