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016: The Three Types of Patents

In this episode, we discuss the three types of patents.

Lead-off Quote:

We think we have solved the mystery of creation. Maybe we should patent the universe and charge everyone royalties for their existence.
~Stephen Hawkings

A patent is a right granted to an inventor by the federal government that permits the inventor to exclude others from making, selling or using the invention for a period of time. 

The Three Types of Patent – Utility, Design, Plant

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A Harlem Shake Infringement

Originally posted 2013-03-12 20:55:56. By Tasha Schmidt | amdlawgroup.com Have you heard of the “Harlem Shake?” The “Harlem Shake” is more than just a really popular video. Voices being heard in the background of the viral Internet hit on “Harlem Shake,” have caused quite the uproar. One of the individual’s whose voice can be heard […]

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Preserving Originality in Branding through Trademark Protection

By Ozelle Martin | amdlawgroup.com
Originality is the cornerstone for building a formidable identity for a brand. Marketers, branding professionals, entrepreneurs and the like spend a great deal of time brain-storming the elements that would ensure that a brand is memorable and readily identifiable by its consumers and potential consumers. Furthermore, the originality of a brand’s identify is the greatest reputational asset that any business can possess and it must be preserved and protected.

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You Can’t Have My Blessing…Or The Music!

By Breanna Pendilton | amdlawgroup.com
Copyright law is founded upon the theory that it will promote and incentivize new works, while also giving credit to the originator.  But what happens when the owner of that work, will not share it?  Does that promote and incentivize new works?  Lifetime has recently announced its plans to make a biopic of the late singer Aaliyah, who died tragically in a plane crash at the age of 22 in 2001.  Her family, who was not contacted about the biopic, is not happy, and feels as if Aaliyah’s life was enough of a story to be told on the big screen.  But what can they really do right?  I mean, Aaliyah’s life, itself, is nothing but a bunch of facts.  In the eyes of copyright law, facts are not copyrightable, and Aaliyah’s family does not own her life story.

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Copyright Protection for Graffiti a/k/a Street Art

The esteemed author William Shakespeare once said, “A rose by any other name would smell as sweet”. Does that same idea apply to the copyrightability of street art?

The term street art is defined as any visual work created in public locations. Some common media include spray paint, stencils, sticker art, street installations, and sculpture. However, the legality of this street art becomes a problem when it is not commissioned. Most call this unauthorized street art, graffiti–or even vandalism. These different ways to describe street art have led to a divide within the legal community.

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Getting Out of the Weeds: Why Cannabis Products Can Be Patented but not Trademarked

Cannabis is legal for recreational or medicinal use in almost 30 states, and this number is likely to grow. However, cannabis remains illegal under federal law. As a result, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) will not register trademarks for retailers of cannabis, or for products that contain cannabis.
However, what is especially interesting is that the USPTO will grant patents involving cannabis and its derivatives. More simply put, cannabis is patentable. Examples of cannabis-related patents include drug formulations, methods of treating sickness and disease with cannabis, and even cannabis plant patents. So why is cannabis patentable, even though federally it is illegal?

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Are You Collaborating or Just Copying?

Let’s be honest! Some of the best music you’ve ever heard are music collaborations. It’s one of the best ways that you can make your work original, but it is also one of the most dangerous ways to have your work stripped from you (That is, if you do not adhere to the rules of copyright law). Before remixing, sampling, and/or collaborating on music, here are four things you should know.

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Why The Supreme Court Is Weighing in on Patents (A Discussion of Recent Cases)

The Supreme Court has also overturned several rulings from the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit (CAFC), which has historically taken the position of strict enforcement of patents and copyright. A notable case is Impression Products, Inc. v. Lexmark. This case involved the doctrine of “exhaustion,” under which a patent holder’s rights to enforce its patent ordinarily are “exhausted” at the moment the patent holder sells the patent-protected object. The Supreme Court held that “Lexmark exhausted its patent rights in toner cartridges sold in the United States through its Return Program” and thus “cannot sue Impression Products for patent infringement with respect to cartridges Lexmark sold abroad, which Impression Products acquired from purchasers and imported into the United States, because an authorized sale outside the United States, just as one within the United States, exhausts all rights under the Patent Act”.

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Train A Child In the Way He Should Go…. And He Will Call YOU A Copycat

Last month, small Atlanta-based shoe designer, Antonio Brown, sued big time company, Louis Vuitton, for trademark infringement. Since the earlier months of 2013, Brown’s sneaker collection has been known for its distinctive metal plate placed across the toe box of its shoes. In February of this year, Louis Vuitton’s new “On the Road” collection made its debut with an all too familiar metal plate, placed right across the toe of the shoe.

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Tory Burch Sues over Counterfeit Jewelry, Gets Countersued

In a year rife with counterfeit lawsuits filed by Tory Burch to protect her famous TT logo, the designer brand is now faced with a suit itself as the defendant, a New York company Lin & J, recently struck back with a countersuit. Lin & J own a wholesale brand called Isis that sells rings, necklaces, and earrings Tory Burch asserts are counterfeits of the brand’s own jewelry. However, Lin & J deny that the Isis jewelry pieces are copies and that similarities are coincidental. In their counterclaim, Lin & J accuse Tory Burch of copying their design instead. Besides trademark infringement, they are suing the fashion brand for unfair trade practices, tortious interference with its business relationships and defamation.

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Making a Case for Modern-day Copyright in Court and in Congress

This week, copyright issues received considerable federal attention both in the Ninth Circuit of the US Courts of Appeals on Wednesday and in a hearing by the U.S. House of Representatives’ House Judiciary Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet on Thursday. While the court ruled that digital video recorders that automatically

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Licensing for Small Businesses

An important aspect of intellectual property rights is the ability to create licensing agreements. However, an effective licensing agreement requires a few key factors.

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Doing the Most!: 50 Cent Expands Empire with New Disney Deal

Curtis “50 cent” Jackson is the classic rags to riches tale. He grew up on the streets of Jamaica Queens, NY, where he was shot 9 times, and managed to survive the encounter. One could make an argument that the 39 year old rapper was destined to give the world something great. Not only has the mogul churned out one of the best-selling rap albums of all time with his debut “Get Rich or Die Tryin” in 2003, but he has also become a successful actor, and one of the most savvy business men in the music industry. In conjunction with his condom brand, entitled “Magic Stick”, and one of the most lucrative beverage deals in history with his “Formula 50” Vitamin Water, the multi-talented Jackson has now entered the audio industry with a new headphone deal with Intel, SMS Audio, and Disney.

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