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Alt Legal Blog

Your source for news, updates and guidance on all things trademarks and intellectual property.

Alt Legal IP News – Issue #223

Bri Van Til | January 20, 2021
2 min read

A Bull in a China Shop

A court in China has said Amazon can’t use its AWS (Amazon Web Services) logo.

What good are letters of consent in China? Here’s an overview of consent agreements in the US.

China has a new patent law, and here’s an explanation of what you need to know about it.

A recent USPTO report affirms that regional Chinese governments’ monetary incentives to secure US trademark registrations have distorted the US trademark registry. For more information about the research on this, check out this interview with Professor Jeanne Fromer of NYU Law.

Just putting this out there and biting my tongue: Chinese tech firms have patented tools to detect and track Uighurs.

Actions Have Consequences

The Proud Boys may face cancellation of their trademark as a result of the insurrection in the Capitol earlier this month.

PTAB ruled that a party’s ex parte communications with the President and members of Congress were sanctionable, and the Federal Circuit confirmed PTAB’s right to determine the sanctions.

Cox wanted relief from its $1 billion in infringement damages, but a judge said nah.

Let Me Describe It for You

To find out how to combat claims that an applied-for mark is merely descriptive or generic, come to David Postolski’s webinar next week.

A recent case demonstrates that TTAB can give less weight to similarity of terms that are descriptive or even suggestive.

Despite its best efforts, Apple cannot trademark SMART KEYBOARD for, um, a smart keyboard.

Professional Concerns

This is an Ironclad opening for legal counsel.

Where would you rather be counsel? A. At Buzzfeed or B. Not at Buzzfeed

If you’re looking to put a Gap on your resume, they’re hiring for senior counsel.

It’s unclear if Johnson Controls the hiring at the company or if someone else does, but if you want to be the IP director, go for it!

The Law Offices of Gretchen McCord is (are?) looking for a part-time trademark attorney.

An anonymous customer of ours is looking for a paralegal. Apply!

Have an open role on your team? Send a link to your job listing to, and we’ll publish it in our next newsletter.

Odds and Ends

The USPTO has put together a free trademark basics boot camp! As a reminder, Alt Legal also has a free trademark paralegal course.

The copyright infringement case between Nicki Minaj and Tracy Chapman was settled, but this author argues that it serves as a “warning” for those considering sampling others’ works without a license.

Through Disney’s efforts, Steamboat Willie has enjoyed copyright protection since its publication almost 100 years ago, but will the cartoon enter the public domain in a few years?

An artist who created a goldfish-filled phone booth has won a copyright suit. For you young whippersnappers, phone booths are public places where one could place a telephone call using a land line. A land line is… oh, nevermind. Look it up.

The Trademark Modernization Act will have a huge impact on trademark practice. Join Alt Legal and Rukayatu Tijani for our webinar next month to learn all about it. Also, if you missed Phil Cox’s great webinar about creating a business development plan for this year, check out the recording here.

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