Recent Posts by Michael Thomas

Four Legal Issues Facing Small Business Websites in 2017

As the new year unfolds, small business owners face four legal issues that could affect their websites and ultimately their bottom line in 2017. Here is a list of the biggest problems on the horizon, and some solutions: Communications Decency Act Section 230 Problem: Accusations of Republication of False, Misleading, Defamatory, or Unlawful Content on…
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New Copyright Regulation May Impact Small Business Owners

Small business owners who allow postings of user-generated content to their websites need to take immediate steps to preserve their safe harbor protection under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”) in light of a recent rule change by the U.S. Copyright Office. The DMCA’s safe harbor provision, found at 17 U.S.C. §512, provides website operators…
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Court Blunts Cannabis-Related Trademark Registrations

The explosion of the cannabis industry nationwide has led to an increase in marijuana-related trademark registration attempts, many of which have been met with stone(d) silence and refusal by the Trademark Trial and Appeals Board (“TTAB”). Despite legalization in many states, marijuana is still classified as an illegal substance under the federal Controlled Substance Act…
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Court: One Sale Is Enough to Show Trademark Use in Commerce

Clients seeking trademark registrations often ask how much use of a mark in interstate commerce is needed for success. Earlier this month the Federal Circuit answered that question when it reversed a decision by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (“TTAB”) that cancelled a trademark of a church in Zion, Illinois at the behest of…
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