R.E. Whittaker Co., a Pennsylvania corporation based in New Castle, PA, filed a trademark infringement suit against Misco Products Corporation, a Pennsylvania corporation based in Reading, PA on July 9, 2010 in the United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania.
Whittaker has been in the business of manufacturing and selling commercial carpet cleaning products for over twenty-five years. In 1992 Whittaker introduced a carpet cleaning product under the brand name Crystal Dry®. The Complaint alleges that Misco recently started promoting, advertising, and selling a carpet cleaning product identified by the mark “Crystal Clear.”
The causes of action in the Complaint are: trademark infringement under federal trademark law, false designation of origin and unfair competition, dilution of famous marks, and trademark infringement and unfair competition under Pennsylvania common law.
The Carolina Hurricanes, who were eliminated from the 2009 Stanley Cup Playoffs by the Pittsburgh Penguins in the Eastern Conference Finals, filed a trademark infringement lawsuit against singer Tye Banks in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina on August 7, 2009 (Hurricanes Hockey Limited Partnership v. Banks et al, case number 4:2009cv00136).
The Hurricanes claim that Tye is using their trademark by referring to his song “Carolina Hurricanes” as “the official Carolina Hurricanes song.” The Hurricanes play his song during hockey games.
The Hurricanes sent Banks a cease-and-desist notice in February and he responded by removing the term “official” or “anthem” from his website and by adding disclaimers. Nonetheless, the Hurricanes claim that by Tye wearing a Hurricanes jersey in promotional material to promote his song, he is suggesting affiliation with the Hurricanes that damages their marks. (Source: www.thehockeynews.com)
– Katie Cooper
Eat’n Park, a restaurant company based east of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, filed a trademark infringement lawsuit in the United States District Court for Western Pennsylvania against Forget-Me-Knot Gifts alleging that Forget-Me-Knot sells a Smiley cookie that infringes Eat’n Park’s Smiley cookies.
Eat’n Park owns the trademark “Smiley” for “sugar cookie having raised design of a smiling face sold in restaurants for consumption on or off the premises.” Eat’n Park has been selling its Smiley cookies under the trademark since 1987.
On July 10, 2009, Rosetta Stone filed suit in Federal Court in the Eastern District of Virginia against Google claiming trademark infringement. Rosetta Stone claims that Google’s selling of its trademarks and similar terms in AdWords is trademark infringement.
AdWords allows you to advertise on Google on a pay per click basis. Users of AdWords are allowed to select keywords for their advertisement. Internet users search Google and if the keywords match the advertisement the advertisement appears with a link. When the internet user clicks the link the advertiser is charged a fee.
A Google spokesperson has indicated that what Google does is similar to what occurs in a grocery store where competing products appear on a shelf next to each other. Google believes that its practices allow consumers to find the best product at the lowest price.
Google has not yet filed its answer to the complaint.