NSA, Its Seal, and the First Amendment

Speech, Citizenry, and the Market in real life. It seems the NSA has invoked a public law to prevent someone from making parody NSA T-shirts. The shirt displayed the seal and the words “THE NSA, The only part of the government that actually listens.” The NSA was not amused. The first site to offer the shirts stopped offering the shirts after a letter from the NSA (apparently they were able…

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Santa’s Brand

Quietbook has a mock re-branding Santa guide up. It is a “refresh.” Refresh. The word triggered a flashback to corpspeak where irony goes to die. I scanned the rest of the page. “*Santa* is a Concept, not an idea. It’s an Emotion, not a feeling. It’s both Yesterday and Today. And it’s Tomorrow as well.” Ah yes. They get it. The Santa Brand book is a great example of the…

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Opportunity for Professor at INTA Annual Meeting 2014

The International Trademark Association (INTA) is looking for one professor to be chosen as a Table Topic moderator for the 2014 Annual Meeting to be held in Hong Kong next May.  (For those who aren’t aware, the INTA Annual Meeting is a conference of about 9,500 trademark professionals from more than 140 countries.  It is a good opportunity to stay up to date on the latest issues in trademark law,…

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The Team Who Will Not Be Named: The Redskins and Slate

This week, Slate announced that it would stop referring to the NFL team from Washington, DC, as the Redskins.  With this decision, Slate joins Washington’s City Paper, as well as the Buffalo News and the Philadelphia Daily News, in their refusal to use the Redskins moniker. Litigation over the Redskins trademark has been protracted and convoluted.  Substantively speaking, the litigation has focused on disparagement, which allows a trademark registration to…

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