Patent trolling is a relatively new way for a company to make money off of the infringement of others. Patent Trolls, or patent assertion entities (PAEs) are companies whose business model is to buy up commonly used patents and ‘troll’ looking for companies using the patent to file infringement suits. Usually, the sole purpose of [...]

Is Dumb Starbucks infringing on Starbucks’ Trademark? The recent controversy over the use of the name Starbucks, by Dumb Starbucks in L.A. or more notoriously the parody Dumb Starbucks, is a lesson in caution for all of us. Ordinarily, an unauthorized use of a trademark infringes the trademark holder’s rights if it is likely to [...]

There are four different categories of terms with respect to trademarks. Arrayed in an ascending order, which roughly reflects their eligibility to trademark status and the degree of protection accorded, these classes are: generic, descriptive, suggestive, and arbitrary or fanciful and it should be noted that the lines of demarcation are not always clear. Generic [...]

Do you have a design you’ve created that is unique and one-of-a-kind? Congratulations! To get to this point it took time, creativity and perseverance. You’ve done it! Now what? Protect your creation by applying for a Patent. There are three types of patents, Provisional, Design, and Utility Patents. It is important to understand what each [...]

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LAW Creative Commons Policy Statement Supports Real Copyright Reform Creative Commons, the non-profit best known for its copyright licenses that allow creators to voluntarily waive certain automatically-granted exclusive rights, has released a powerful new policy statement supporting fundamental copyright reform around the globe. This statement works to counter any argument that simply having [...]

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LAW Google Seeks Protection to Copy Books Without Permission Google Inc., owner of the world’s largest search engine, tried to persuade a judge that digitally copying millions of books for online searches without authors’ permission is protected by copyright law. The company argued Monday in federal court in Manhattan that the fair-use provision [...]

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LAW When Startups Seek Patent Trolls as Saviors, the System Has Failed It turns out two tech startups have banded together with patent trolls in order to fight off insane instances of patent assertion. While this sentence may cause you to do a double take, it’s sadly true. In the face of costly, [...]

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LAW Google Is Waging War on Apps That Attack and Steal From Your Phone Google made sweeping changes late last month to its policies for developers on Play, the official store for apps that run on Android, Google’s smartphone operating system. The changes, which among other things affect how ads are displayed and [...]

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LAW America’s most profitable company per employee makes your phone work—and it’s not Apple You’d be forgiven for not recognizing the name InterDigital, despite the fact that it has been around since 1972 and developed many of the technologies that are critical to our increasingly mobile, wireless world. As a result, per employee, [...]

It can be difficult to get all of these items straight, and know how to protect your business. We’ve created a chart based on our recent webinar that helps walk you through the various types of protection.     Are you protecting your ideas and investions? Melfi Associates can help you ensure ownership and value over [...]