Monthly Archives: February 2014

Informal administrative inquiry doesn’t preclude lawsuit over "organic"

Brown v. Hain Celestial Group, Inc., 2014 WL 556732, No. C 11–03082 (N.D. Cal. Feb. 10, 2014) (magistrate judge) Plaintiffs sued Hain alleging that it marketed its “Avalon Organics” and “Jason” cosmetic products as organic when they were not made … Continue reading

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rigorous falsity standard in sophisticated market defeats false advertising claim

Kwan Software Engineering, Inc. v. Foray Technologies, LLC, No. C 12-03762, 2014 WL 572290 (N.D. Cal. Feb. 11, 2014) Plaintiff (here VeriPic) and defendant both sell digital asset management software to law enforcement.  VeriPic and Foray both sell software that … Continue reading

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A consumer protection case for Fox Mulder?

Hey, I get to make an X-Files reference! Lilly v. ConAgra Foods, Inc., — F.3d —-, 2014 WL 644706 (9th Cir. Feb. 20, 2014) Lilly alleged that the tasty coating on sunflower seed shells is designed to be eaten, and … Continue reading

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British villains, by which we mean Marvel’s Loki etc.

So what are the trademark implications of the Jaguar ads starring three British actors who tout their credentials as film villains?  Any copyright implications, since they’re evoking some of their characters?  The disclaimers don’t say a word about the franchises … Continue reading

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FTC wins big in case against light bulb sellers

The FTC’s Business Center Blog has the details, which include a $21 million refund order representing the gross revenues from the advertised products, with no offsets for the benefit consumers actually received.  A very strong opinion for the FTC, requiring … Continue reading

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Image advertising is commercial speech

Jordan v. Jewel Food Stores, Inc. — F.3d —-, 2014 WL 627603 (7th Cir. Feb. 19) When a commemorative magazine issue celebrating Michael Jordan’s career carries ads referencing that career, how should right of publicity and Lanham Act claims, and … Continue reading

Posted in commercial speech, first amendment, right of publicity, trademark | Leave a comment

Lanham Act 43(a) and Rule 9(b)

SKEDKO, Inc. v. ARC Products, LLC, 2014 WL 585379, No. 3:13–cv–00696 (D. Ore. Feb. 13, 2014) Short opinion finding that Rule 9(b) applies to Lanham Act false advertising claims (here, counterclaims), because they sound in fraud.  Fraud might not be … Continue reading

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retail purchases mean class isn’t ascertainable

Sethavanish v. ZonePerfect Nutrition Co., 2014 WL 580696, No. 12-2907 (N.D. Cal. Feb. 13, 2014) Another case finding that, because the product is cheap and people don’t keep purchase records, and because somebody might lie to get a piece of … Continue reading

Posted in california, class actions, consumer protection, fda, http://schemas.google.com/blogger/2008/kind#post, standing | Leave a comment

Connecticut lawyer can’t bring unfair competition claim against California lawyer

Shehu, LLC v. Adams, 2014 WL 567832, CV136017710S (Conn. Super. Ct. Jan. 17, 2014) Plaintiffs (a Connecticut lawyer and his firm) sued Adams and his firm, both located in California.  In 2012, Adams emailed Shehu, LLC and two employees of … Continue reading

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HLR Free Speech Symposium: Jack Balkin, Old School/New School Speech Regulation

Speech presupposes an infrastructure. Sometimes obvious, sometimes not.  NYT isn’t simply the print on the page, it’s a staff and a building and printers and printers’ unions and delivery trucks and ad agencies and all the infrastructure that allows that … Continue reading

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