Posted On: October 30, 2008

Defendant Genetic Denim Filed A Third Party Complaint For Cancellation Of XX Trademark Registration And Unfair Competition

los-angeles-trademark-attorney-genetic-projec-e.jpgLos Angeles, CA – Project E previously filed (posted here) a trademark infringement lawsuit, at the Federal District Court in Los Angeles, against Genetic Denim over the use of the “XX” design stitched into jeans. Defendant Genetic Denim has countered with the filing of a third-party complaint (read here) against Michael D. Hecht, the owner of record of the USPTO registration of the “XX” trademark. Hecht allegedly licensed the “XX” trademark – on an exclusive basis – to Project E, the plaintiff in the action.

Genetic Denim quizzically asserts that Project E failed to allege the registered trademark in the initial complaint and contends the absence is based on the possible invalidity of the registration – i.e. “the mark was incapable of functioning as a trademark within the clothing industry as the XX cross-stitching was and is a common decorative element found on clothing.” Genetic Denim seeks cancellation of the trademark registration and monetary damages for unfair competition under the Lanham Act 43(a). The case is titled Project E, Inc. v. Genetic Denim, LLC, CV 08-04016 R (C.D. Cal. 2008).

Posted On: October 28, 2008

Expedited Discovery Leads To Addition Of Defendant To Movierumor.com Copyright Infringement Lawsuit

Los Angeles, CA – I previously posted (click here) about the copyright infringement lawsuit filed against movierumor.com by several motion production companies at the Federal District Court In Los Angeles, wherein it was alleged that movierumor’s compilation of links to websites that showed movies – currently playing in theatres – constituted copyright infringement. The production companies filed an ex parte application to conduct expedited discovery to determine the identity of the owners of the movierumor.com website. Having conducted discovery, the motion production companies have now filed a First Amended Complaint (read here) adding Ali Jaffar as an additional defendant.

copyright-attorney-in-los-angeles-movierumor.jpg

The case is titled: Universal City Studios Productions, LLLP v. Movierumor.com, CV08-04931 RSWL (C.D. Cal. 2008).

Posted On: October 24, 2008

Cash 4 Gold Term Triggers Trademark Infringement Lawsuit At The Los Angeles Federal Court

Los Angeles, CA – In a complaint that is filled with as many twists and turns of a spy novel, CJ Environmental filed a trademark infringement lawsuit, at the Federal District Court in Los Angeles, over the use of the term “Cash 4 Gold” by a competing business. CJ alleges that it has operated as a precious metal recycling company since 2005 and has used the mark “Cash for Gold” on its website, which site was created by web designer Michael Scherenberg. Also, CJ alleges use of the “Cash for Gold” and “Cash 4 Gold” marks in various newspaper and media advertisements across the country.

los-angeles-trademark-lawyers-cash-4-gold.jpgThe complaint asserts that Defendant, long after CJ’s first use, created the www.cash4gold.com website using the same designer that CJ had used for its website, Mr. Scherenberg. “At the time Mr. Scherenberg created Defendant’s website, he still had access and control over Plaintiff’s website. On or about August 10, 2007, it is believed that Mr. Scherenberg was instructed by Defendant to remove the ‘Cash for Gold’ link and related image files from the Plaintiff’s website.” After months of back and forth letters among the parties’ lawyers, including take down notices to domain name registrants, this lawsuit was filed. The case is titled CJ Environmental, Inc. v. Cash4Gold, LLC, CV08-06689 R (C.D. Cal. 2008).

Posted On: October 21, 2008

Copyright and Trademark Litigation Filed By Attorneys For Konami Over Sales Of Yu-Gi-Oh! Trading Cards

UPDATE 1/10/2010: Court rules that Upper Deck counterfeited Yu Gi Oh! cards. Details here.

Los Angeles, CA – Konami Digital Entertainment, through its trademark attorneys, commenced litigation for trademark infringement, Lanham Act 43(a) unfair competition, and copyright infringement lawsuit against Vintage Sports Cards, Inc. at the Los Angeles Federal District Court. Since 1973, Konami has developed and published popular trading cards, card games, interactive entertainment software products, collectibles and toys. Konami has registered numerous trademarks with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office, including its word mark and numerous logos.

trademark-litigation-attorney-los-angeles-konami-yu-gi-oh.jpgKonami has created Yu-Gi-Oh!, a Japanese Manga (a form of comics), animation television series and card games. Konami has filed for and received numerous copyright registrations from the U.S. Copyright Office. The game’s rules ascribe a range of powers and relative values to specific cards, wherein “Rare Cards” are highly sought after by players and collectors and have the greatest commercial value. In the United States, Konami sells the game cards through its exclusive distributor, The Upper Deck Company.

Vintage is a re-seller and distributor of trading cards, including Yu-Gi-Oh! game cards. Vintage is accused of re-packaging the cards and inserting counterfeit reproduction of Yu-Gi-Oh! Rare Cards, which “are featured prominently in the package…In the vast majority of Vintage distributed Rare Cards, the usage of security foils or holograms affixed to the cards to verify their authenticity differ in important respects from authentic Konami cards.” Konami alleges that it was forced to file the lawsuit not only to protect its goodwill and reputation, but to also prevent the public from being harmed from the sale of Defendants’ counterfeit products. The case is titled Konami Digital Entertainment, Inc. v. Vintage Sports Cards, Inc., CV08-06630 VBF (C.D. Cal. 2008).

Posted On: October 16, 2008

Mexico’s Club De Futbol America Files Trademark Infringement Lawsuit Over Soccer School’s Mark

Los Angeles, CA – Trademark attorneys for Mexico’s Club De Futbol America filed a trademark infringement, trademark dilution and Lanham Act 43(a) unfair competition lawsuit at the Los Angeles Federal District Court against operators of a soccer club using the Club America trademark in the United States. Club America is a professional soccer club formed in 1916 and is one of the most popular soccer teams playing in Mexico’s Primera Division. It has registered with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office the words “Club America” and its design trademark of a ball with the letters “C” and “A” on either side of the continents of North and South America. Club America also runs a soccer school under its word and design trademarks.

trademark-attorney-mexico-futbol-soccer-club-america.bmpClub Amercia accuses the Defendants of using the Club America trademarks in operating competing soccer training schools, whereby to “the average consumer, there is no way to distinguish promotion or advertising of the Counterfeit Schools from the Authentic Schools.” Defendants are accused of using the website www.clubamericaschool.com to promote the competing soccer training schools under the additional names of “Casa De Deportes,” “Centro De Formacion Club America,” “Club America,” “Club America School,” and/or “America School Professional Soccer Academy.” Defendants are accused of the deliberately infringing and causing confusion by using Plaintiff’s logo on their website, by displaying the team’s official eagle mascot, and having a prominent hyperlink to Plaintiff’s official website. Plaintiff alleges that defendants have failed to comply with three cease and desist letters, thereby forcing the filing of the instant lawsuit. The case is titled Club De Futbol America v. Mike Ochoa, et al., CV08-06563 MRP (C.D. Cal. 2008).

Posted On: October 14, 2008

ABC’s “Wipeout” Television Show Subject Of Copyright Infringement Lawsuit Filed By Tokyo Broadcasting, Creator Of Takeshi's Castle/MXC Show

Los Angeles, CA – Copyright attorneys for Tokyo Broadcasting System (“TBS”) filed a copyright infringement lawsuit at the Los Angeles Federal District Court, accusing American Broadcasting Companies, Inc. (“ABC”) of copyright infringement over its “Wipeout” television show. TBS created and aired its Japanese reality television shows “Takeshi’s Castle,” “Most Extreme Elimination Challenge” (“MXC”), “Sasuke,” “Kunoichi,” “Ninja Warrior” and “Women of Ninja Warrior.” TBS began airing “Takeshi’s Castle” in Japan from 1986 to 1989, which “involves laymen contestants who compete in a variety of silly physical challenges consisting of huge obstacle courses that most of the contestants are expected to fail. The contestants’ failed attempts to complete the challenges often look painful or ridiculous, but mostly they are comical in nature.” In 2003, “Takeshi’s Castle” was aired in the United States under the “MXC” name on the Spike television network.

los-angeles-copyright-attorneys-Takeshis-Castle-mxc.jpgTBS alleges that “Defendants had knowledge of and were familiar with the Shows before Defendants created – using that term loosely – ‘Wipeout.’ Indeed, it is a common custom and practice in the United States television industry to obtain copies of and view television programs (especially popular programs) airing in other countries, including Japan, and several of the Shows were and are broadcast in the United States.” The complaint continues by asserting that “before airing ‘Wipeout’ for the first time, Defendants took steps to ensure that a Google search of the terms ‘Takeshi’s Castle,’ ‘Ninja Warrior’ or ‘MXC’ would result in the Google Searcher being directed to ‘Wipeout on ABC’ as a Sponsored Link.” In addition to the copyright infringement claim, TBS asserts causes of action for California Statutory Unfair Competition under Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code § 17200 and common law unfair competition. The case is titled: Tokyo Broadcasting System, Inc. v. American Broadcasting Companies, Inc., CV08-06550 SJO (C.D. Cal. 2008).

Posted On: October 8, 2008

Asics Sued Dolce & Gabbana For Trademark Infringement Over Shoes With Stripes In Los Angeles

Los Angeles, CA – Trademark attorneys for Asics filed a trademark infringement, trademark dilution and Lanham Act 43(a) unfair competition lawsuit against Dolce & Gabbana at the Los Angeles Federal District Court. Asics has registered numerous trademarks with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office for its stripe design having two relatively parallel vertical stripes intersected by two curving stripes connected at one end. Asics has used the stripe design trademark on shoes and apparel – for over forty years – since 1966.

los-angeles-trademark-attorney-shoes-asics-dolce-gabbana.jpgAsics also asserts that it has widely advertised and promoted its products with the stripe design trademark through numerous and diverse advertising media, including print, television and the Internet. Asics’ print advertising is alleged to have the following “look for” advertising: “The stripe design featured on the sides of ASICS shoes is a trademark of ASICS Corporation and is a registered trademark in most countries of the world.”

Asics alleges that Dolce & Gabbana is “selling shoes under its D&G line bearing a mark that infringes ASICS’ famous Stripe Design mark at retail shoe stores and via the Internet.” The complaint continues, on information and belief, that Dolce & Gabbana has “engaged in intentional infringement by designing shoes that include a stripe design that is confusingly similar to ASICS’ famous Stripe Design.” The complaint identifies five different Dolce & Gabbana shoes which bear the allegedly confusingly similar stripe design. The complaint asserts the following causes of action: (1) Federal trademark infringement 15 U.S.C. § 1114 [Lanham Act §32(1)]; (2) Federal unfair competition under section 43(a) of the Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1125(a); (3) Lanham Act dilution of famous trademark under 15 U.S.C. § 1125(c); (4) Trademark infringement under California law [Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code § 14320]; (5) Trademark infringement under California common law; (6) Trademark dilution under California law [Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code § 14330]; (7) False advertising under California law [Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code §§ 17500, 17535]; and, (8) Unfair competition under state law [Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code §17200 and §17203]. The case is titled Asics Corporation v. Dolce & Gabbana, CV08-06407 AHM (C.D. Cal. 2008).

Posted On: October 6, 2008

EV.R’s Attorneys File Copyright And Trademark Infringement Lawsuit Over Clothing Designs In Los Angeles

clothing-design-copyright-attorney-trademark-lawyer-evr.jpgLos Angeles, CA – Copyright and trademark attorneys for EV.R, Inc., dba Skinny Minnie, filed a copyright and trademark infringement lawsuit, in the Central District Of California (Los Angeles Division), against Anama, LLC. EVR is a clothing designer and manufacturer whose garments and clothing designs feature copyrightable works which have been registered with the US Copyright Office. EVR states that it created several unique designs which it exhibited to retailers at numerous tradeshows and in its own showrooms throughout the United States. EVR has also filed trademark application to register its two designs, both featuring skulls, with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office.

EVR alleges that it recently discovered Defendant’s sales of women’s tops and shirts featuring designs identical to and infringing on EVR’s designs and trademarks. The complaint states that “Defendants have willfully and intentionally infringed EVR’s copyrights and trademarks by slavishly copying, selling, publicly displaying copies of EVR’s works or works substantially or strikingly similar thereto, namely, the Infringing Products, without EVR’s consent or pemission.” EVR requests either actual or statutory damages under 17 U.S.C. § 504, in addition to their costs of the lawsuit and reasonable attorneys’ fees pursuant to 17 U.S.C. § 505. Also, EVR requests damages under the Lanham Act. The case is titled: EV.R, Inc. v. Anama, LLC, CV08-06348 SJO (C.D. Cal. 2008).

Posted On: October 3, 2008

Trademark Infringement Lawsuit Filed Over Costume Jewelry And Accessories Bearing Playboy Trademarks In The Central District Of California

los-angeles-trademark-attorney-playboy.jpgLos Angeles, CA – Trademark attorneys for Playboy commenced trademark infringement litigation, at the Central District Court of California, over the sale of costume jewelry and accessories bearing its trademarks. Playboy magazine has been continuously published since 1953 and is now available in approximately 47 countries. Playboy has registered its trademarks with the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office, and the trademark is used on over 1,500 products that are sold in more than 125 countries, ranging from apparel and jewelry to slot machines and video games.

Playboy has also used its Rabbit Head Design since 1954 and owns at least 1862 trademark registrations in approximately 170 countries. The complaint alleges that “long after Playboy’s adoption and use of Playboy’s Trademarks in connection with products and long after federal registration of Playboy’s Trademarks, Defendants commenced the importation, distribution, advertising, offering for sale and sale of merchandise bearing counterfeits of Playboy’s Trademarks.” In addition to preliminary and permanent injunctions, the complaint seeks unspecified monetary damages. The case is titled Playboy Enterprises International, Inc. v. Axcess, Inc., SACV08-994 JVS (C.D. Cal. 2008).

Posted On: October 1, 2008

Copyright Infringement Lawsuit Filed In Los Angeles Over Religious Prayer Cards And Figurines

copyright-attorney-cards-figurines-los-angeles.jpgLos Angeles, CA – Plaintiffs San Francis Imports and Basevi, through their attorney, filed a copyright infringement, Section 17200 unfair competition, and trade dress infringement lawsuit at the Federal District Court in Los Angeles against NG Figurine Wholesale, WG Trading Corp., and Gary Ngo. The complaint alleges that from 1935 to 1950, Cromo, N.B., an Italian corporation, created artwork with the assistance of numerous artists, which copyrights in the artwork were transferred to and registered by Cromo. In turn, Cromo assigned licensing rights in the United States to Basevi, which license was executed with San Francis.

The complaint alleges that “Defendants, and each of them through its (sic.) employees copied Plaintiff’s (sic.) Holy Cards and caused to be manufactured and offered for sale to the public Holy Cards which is (sic.) not only substantially similar, but is strikingly similar to Plaintiffs’ Holy Cards.” The case is titled San Francis Imports v. NG Figurine Wholesale, CV08-06252 RGK (C.D. Cal. 2008).