Recent Posts by Michael Thomas

Not So Shockingly, Trademark Immoral and Scandalous Clause Struck Down

The court in a recent case, In Re: Erik Brunetti, put another nail in the coffin of the Lanham Act's Section 2(a), finding that the "immoral" and "scandalous" clause of the statute is unconstitutional under the First Amendment. Earlier this year in another case interpreting a clause in the same statute, the Supreme Court in Matal v. Tam affirmed…
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Recent Cease & Desist Letters Not Tone-Deaf Like Many Predecessors

As far as cease and desist letters go, I religiously counsel my clients, whether they are looking to enforce their rights, or defend against another party's assertions, that the name of the game is TONE, TONE, TONE. Get the tone wrong, like in this typical, classic "shock and awe" letter, and you might find your…
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California Government Launches New Cannabis-Related Business Portals

In anticipation of the January 1, 2018 roll-out of legal recreational marijuana in California, the state government has launched a pair of web portals to act as "one-stop shops" for the creation and licensing of cannabis-related businesses. The California Cannabis Portal (CCP) is a state government website with links to all relevant players in the California…
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Deadline Approaching to Comply with New Website Copyright Regulation

Business owners operating websites, apps, or other online services that transmit, cache, store, or link to user generated content have until December 31, 2017 to comply with recent changes made by the U.S. Copyright Office to its safe harbor registration process. Failure to comply can expose businesses to copyright infringement claims, which in some instances can…
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