Fashion law roundup: trademark (L)insanity; Claire's called a copycat; Coach "not famous" (BONUS: fashion law event calendar!)

Posted by Charles Colman

Here are the stories that caught the eye(s) of LAW OF FASHION this week:

"Will the Real Jeremy Lin Please Stand Up? And Then He Can File a Trademark Claim for LINsanity" (Above The Law)

"[I]t seems like everyone wants a piece of the Linsanity, even on a legal level. Last week we wrote about a man with no actual connection to Jeremy Lin who tried to trademark “Linsanity.” That guy simply, 'wanted to be part of the excitement.' Sure, by making money off of someone else’s name, whatever. Since then several more people have attempted the same absurd bandwagoning. But finally, Jeremy himself has filed an application to trademark his own catchphrase [in connection with, inter alia, duffel bags and sportswear."

"Michael Jordan sues Chinese company for using his name" (Inside Counsel)

"Just wait until Linsanity fully takes root in China—His Airness will be all but forgotten. But until then, Michael Jordan has a battle on his hands worse than fighting the flu in Game 5 against the Utah Jazz in 1997.  Arguably the world’s most-well-known basketball star filed a lawsuit in China earlier this week claiming that a sportswear and footwear company used him name without permission..."


Additional coverage at WSJ ("In China, Air cheow-DAN Cries Foul")

"Are MANGO BEACH and MANGO Confusingly Similar for Soaps, Cosmetics, and Perfumes?" (TTABlog ®)

"Applicant sought to register the mark MANGO BEACH for creams, powders, soap, perfume, and the like [MANGO disclaimed], but Opposer asserted a likelihood of confusion with its registered mark MANGO, in the stylized from shown below, for soaps, perfumery, and cosmetics. The goods are identical in part and the marks sure are close, aren't they? How do you think this came out?"

"Did Claire’s Accessories Copy Their Designs From An Indie Label?" (Styleite)

"We normally associate tween mall accessory giant Claire’s with things like getting your ears pierced for the first time or finding birthday presents for your younger cousins on the cheap. But now that they’ve been accused of patently ripping off an independent British jewelry chain Tatty Devine, we’re just not sure what to think...."


Additional coverage at The Independent ("Tatty Devine v. Claire's: The trickle-down effect, or outright copycatting?")

"Federal Circuit: COACH not a sufficiently famous brand, cannot oppose a similar mark on trademark dilution principle" (Patently-O)

"In a [trademark] dilution claim, the law requires that the mark holder prove that its mark is widely recognized by the general public. When the mark is also a common word such as COACH – the mark holder must also demonstrate that those ordinary 'uses of the mark are now eclipsed by the owner's use of the mark . . .  in almost any context' and that the mark has become 'a household name.'  Coach [the handbag and accessories company] failed to convince the judges that its mark was sufficiently famous to qualify."


Additional coverage at -- yes, right here! -- LAW OF FASHION ® ("Federal Circuit to Coach: Your trademark isn't 'famous' enough for federal anti-dilution law (at least, not on this record"))


Tuesday, Feb. 28th, 9 A.M. to 5 P.M. (NYC) - "Fashioning Our Industry" (featuring this writer, among many other panelists).  Details here.

Tuesday, Feb. 28th, 6:30 P.M. to 9:30 P.M. (DC) - "Fashion Law Week DC" panel and roundtable at Howard Law School (featuring this writer, among others).  Details here.

Wednesday, Feb. 29th, 6:30 P.M. (DC) - "Fashion Law Week DC" (continued, featuring Professor Susan Scafidi and others).  Details here.

Thursday, Mar. 1st, 6:00 P.M. - 8:00 P.M. (NYC) - "On the Heels of the Week: The Status of Fashion Protection," sponsored by the New York State Bar Association's Fashion Law Committee (featuring Elena Paul of Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts, Michael Kelly of Kenyon & Kenyon, and Thomas Kjellberg of Cowan, Liebowitz & Latman, among other esteemed panelists).  Followed immediately by Trunk Show from 8:00 P.M. to 9:30 P.M.  Details here.

Friday, Mar. 2nd, 6:30 P.M. (NYC) - "Fashion Under Attack" at New York Law School (featuring Barbara Kolsun, General Counsel of Stuart Weitzman, and Guillermo Jiménez, Professor at FIT, among others).  Details here.

Monday, Mar. 5th, 6:00 P.M. to 8:00 P.M. (NYC) - "The Business of Fashion," sponsored by the NYC Bar Association Fashion Law Committee (moderated by Marc Lieberstein).  Details here.

Thursday, Mar. 8th, 7:00 P.M. (NYC) - "Getting on the Catwalk" at New York County Lawyers' Association (featuring Karen Artz Ash and Heather McDonald, along with many of the aforementioned speakers).  Details here.

Tuesday, Mar. 20th, 4:30 P.M. to 7:45 P.M. (Philly) - "Penn Intellectual Property Group Annual Symposium: Fashion Law" (featuring Dave Faux and Staci Riordan, among others).  Details here.

Thursday, Mar. 29th, 6:00 P.M. to 8:00 P.M. (NYC) - "Why Copyright?" (sponsored by The Copyright Society and hosted by NYU).  Details forthcoming.

[This post is for entertainment and informational purposes only, and does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney-client relationship among any individuals or entities.  Any views expressed in this post or at the linked web pages are those of the writer on a particular date, and should not necessarily be attributed to this writer, his law firm, or its clients.  LAW OF FASHION does not and cannot warrant the thoroughness or accuracy of the content at the linked web pages.]