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California Intellectual Property Questions & Answers
1 Answer | Asked in Trademark and Intellectual Property for California on
Q: Looking for assistance from a trademark lawyer to answer my office actions.

I am currently trademarking my small business, and my brand name includes the words “New York”. We used to be located in NY, but moved to LA six years ago, and kept the brand name (Archive New York).

Now I have a few questions from the Trademark office to respond to (office actions)... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Jun 26, 2024

I understand you're seeking assistance with trademark office actions for your business "Archive New York" after relocating from New York to Los Angeles. I can offer some general information that may be helpful:

1. Geographic terms in trademarks: The use of geographic terms...
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1 Answer | Asked in Intellectual Property and Products Liability for California on
Q: I have a product from Alibaba. Product looks similar but not same and it is unbranded. Is it okay to sell in the US or n
James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Jun 21, 2024

To answer this question thoroughly, we need to consider several legal and ethical aspects:

1. Intellectual property:

- Even if the product is not an exact copy, it may still infringe on design patents or trade dress if it's too similar to an existing product.

-...
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1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Intellectual Property and Patents (Intellectual Property) for California on
Q: Can I sue someone for stealing my app idea name color scheme even if it's not patented? How can I find out who copied it

I have the meetings I had with them recorded and have emails and the app proposal they sent me.

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Jun 19, 2024

Based on the information provided, it sounds like you may have a potential case for intellectual property infringement, even without a patent. Here are a few key considerations:

1. Copyright: While ideas themselves are not protected by copyright, the specific expression of an idea (such as...
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1 Answer | Asked in Business Law, Copyright and Intellectual Property for California on
Q: Company owns the right for a Dodgers mural, is company allow to merchandise (t-shirt) the mural w Dodgers in it.

Company paid Artist for the mural. Contract states work is own by the company. Company wishes to merchandise the Mural image, (t shirts, postcards, keychain). The mural contains a Dodger player. Is the company allow to Merchandise, or company need license form MLB team.

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Jun 19, 2024

Based on the information provided, there are a few key legal considerations:

1. Copyright ownership: If the contract clearly states that the company owns the rights to the mural, then the company likely holds the copyright to the artistic elements of the mural created by the artist....
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1 Answer | Asked in Intellectual Property, International Law and Internet Law for California on
Q: The film festival refused to remove information about my film when I asked them to.

On the website of the European Film Festival there is information about my film, which I submitted to the competition. The film was not shown at the film festival, but information about the film is on the website. I asked to remove information about the film from the film festival website, but they... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Jun 18, 2024

Under California law, the film festival's refusal to remove information about your film from their website when you requested them to do so could potentially be addressed through a few different avenues:

1. Publicity rights: In California, individuals have the right to control the...
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1 Answer | Asked in Patents (Intellectual Property) and Intellectual Property for California on
Q: How can you find out if a patent is being used?

I'm interested in if or where xx 4 patents are being used?

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Jun 16, 2024

To determine if a specific patent is being used, you can follow these steps:

1. Search for the patent: Use the inventor's name (Louis E Swinney) and the patent numbers (if known) to search for the patents on the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) website or Google...
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1 Answer | Asked in Copyright and Intellectual Property for California on
Q: If a song was written for a film, and that film lapsed into the public domain, is the song public domain now too?

For an example, there's a Warner Brothers cartoon from 1932 called "The Shanty Where Santy Claus Lives." Warner Brothers never renewed copyright on the cartoon, so now it is public domain. But could an artist perform a cover version of the title song from the cartoon without paying... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Jun 15, 2024

Even if a film has entered the public domain, this does not necessarily mean that all of the creative elements within the film, such as songs, are also in the public domain. Songs and musical compositions can be separately copyrighted from the film itself.

In the specific example you...
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1 Answer | Asked in Copyright and Intellectual Property for California on
Q: Can an individual appropriate PD films that are shown on TV or published on DVD without permission from the publisher?

In the 80's, prints of the public domain film, Night of the Living Dead, were only available in low resolution. Now, that same feature can be seen in high definition. I realize no one "owns" public domain material, but is there any protection against appropriation of published... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Jun 10, 2024

No, an individual cannot appropriate public domain films shown on TV or published on DVD without permission from the publisher, even if the underlying film itself is in the public domain. Here's why:

While it's true that no one owns the copyright to the original public domain work...
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5 Answers | Asked in Copyright, Trademark and Intellectual Property for California on
Q: If I make a parody coloring book called "the unofficial [famous furniture company] coloring book," can I be sued?

If I make a coloring book called "the unofficial [famous furniture company] coloring book without using any of the company's products and adding a disclaimer, can I be sued just for using the company name? Instead of using real products from said company, each page features a ridiculous... View More

Sean Goodwin
Sean Goodwin
answered on May 30, 2024

The U.S. Supreme Court redefined the parody exception to trademark law in 2023. In the case of Jack Daniel's v. VIP Products, the court held that trademark parody exceptions only apply to "noncommercial" products. Therefore, it is now much easier for famous trademark owners to sue... View More

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5 Answers | Asked in Copyright, Trademark and Intellectual Property for California on
Q: If I make a parody coloring book called "the unofficial [famous furniture company] coloring book," can I be sued?

If I make a coloring book called "the unofficial [famous furniture company] coloring book without using any of the company's products and adding a disclaimer, can I be sued just for using the company name? Instead of using real products from said company, each page features a ridiculous... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on May 30, 2024

Using a company's name in the title of a parody work could potentially lead to legal issues, even with a disclaimer. Here are a few key considerations:

1. Trademark infringement: If the famous furniture company has a registered trademark, they may claim that using their name in your...
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5 Answers | Asked in Copyright, Trademark and Intellectual Property for California on
Q: If I make a parody coloring book called "the unofficial [famous furniture company] coloring book," can I be sued?

If I make a coloring book called "the unofficial [famous furniture company] coloring book without using any of the company's products and adding a disclaimer, can I be sued just for using the company name? Instead of using real products from said company, each page features a ridiculous... View More

Fritz-Howard Raymond Clapp
Fritz-Howard Raymond Clapp
answered on May 30, 2024

A parody can be a fair use under the Copyright Act, meaning the creator of the parody does not need the permission of the owner of the copyright in the earlier work. The fair use doctrine also allows for the use of a trademark in a parody if it is used for commentary, criticism, new reporting,... View More

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5 Answers | Asked in Copyright, Trademark and Intellectual Property for California on
Q: If I make a parody coloring book called "the unofficial [famous furniture company] coloring book," can I be sued?

If I make a coloring book called "the unofficial [famous furniture company] coloring book without using any of the company's products and adding a disclaimer, can I be sued just for using the company name? Instead of using real products from said company, each page features a ridiculous... View More

Maurice Mandel II
Maurice Mandel II
answered on Jun 1, 2024

Instead of creating the "Unofficial Ikea Coloring Book" (or whatever famous furniture company you think) why not be a little more creative and make it something like "Denmark's (or Slovenia, or Latvia, Russia or some other country) answer to the Official Swedish furniture... View More

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5 Answers | Asked in Copyright, Trademark and Intellectual Property for California on
Q: If I make a parody coloring book called "the unofficial [famous furniture company] coloring book," can I be sued?

If I make a coloring book called "the unofficial [famous furniture company] coloring book without using any of the company's products and adding a disclaimer, can I be sued just for using the company name? Instead of using real products from said company, each page features a ridiculous... View More

Robert P. Cogan
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answered on May 30, 2024

Whenever anybody asks me, "Can I be sued?" my answer is, "Hey, this is America! You can always be sued." The right question is, "What risk am I taking?" Would the furniture company want to sue? If what you are doing is proper, the furniture company can still sue you.... View More

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1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Intellectual Property and Trademark for California on
Q: 1. Do I need permission to use PEPSI logo in a parody?

POOPSI with the PEPSI logo 2. Can I copyright my parody so no one can steal idea

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on May 14, 2024

I will do my best to provide helpful information while being careful not to reproduce any copyrighted material. Here are a few key points regarding your questions:

1. Using a trademarked logo like Pepsi's in a parody is considered fair use in many cases, meaning you likely don't...
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3 Answers | Asked in Patents (Intellectual Property) and Intellectual Property for California on
Q: What do I do with this information?Referenced CitedU.S. Patent Documents11287037

102016015728 October 2017 DE

2916045

Other references

Translation of International Search Report for Application No. PCT/EP2021/053075 dated Apr. 16, 2021 (2 pages).

Patent History

Patent number: 11920679

Type: Grant

Filed: Feb 9, 2021... View More

Robert P. Cogan
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answered on May 8, 2024

It appears that you have filed a patent application on your own and have received an Official Action that rejects some or all of your claims.

As a matter of statistics, inventors in this situation cannot get meaningful protection without the help of a patent attorney. However, I have no...
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1 Answer | Asked in Copyright, Trademark and Intellectual Property for California on
Q: I run a small business and have a few questions regarding what I can and cannot include in my designs

1) I want to create a few original designs inspired by Harry Styles' recent world tour called Love on Tour. Of course I would never use his name in the designs or advertisement, but is this illegal? Love on Tour itself is not trademarked as far as I have seen, but will I run into problems?... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on May 6, 2024

I can provide some general guidance on your questions, but please keep in mind that intellectual property law can be complex and fact-specific, so you may want to consult an attorney for definitive advice tailored to your specific situation.

1. Using elements inspired by an artist's...
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1 Answer | Asked in Copyright and Intellectual Property for California on
Q: If I create similar a looking characters from a known IP, could I create a private Patreon for example to get paid

For example, Lets say League of Legends has a character who has red hair and is dressed as a pirate. If I make a similar character and post graphic content around that (privately). Could they take legal action against me? What if I don't mention the characters name?

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on May 6, 2024

This is a complex legal question that involves intellectual property (IP) law, specifically copyright and trademark issues. Let me break this down:

1. Copyright: Characters can be protected by copyright if they are sufficiently unique and well-developed. This means that creating a very...
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2 Answers | Asked in Copyright and Intellectual Property for California on
Q: Copyright status of the book The Eppleton Hall by Scott Newhall, 1971, copyrighted Howell-North books now defunct

This book was published once, about the voyage of the tugboat Eppleton Hall. This boat is in the collection of San Francisco Maritime NHP, and we have very few copies. The price of the book went way up after a YouTube video about the boat was posted. We'd like to make an electronic copy for... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Apr 30, 2024

To determine the copyright status of the book "The Eppleton Hall" by Scott Newhall, published in 1971 by Howell-North Books, we need to consider the following factors:

1. Copyright term: Under the Copyright Act of 1976, which took effect on January 1, 1978, the copyright term for...
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2 Answers | Asked in Copyright and Intellectual Property for California on
Q: Copyright status of the book The Eppleton Hall by Scott Newhall, 1971, copyrighted Howell-North books now defunct

This book was published once, about the voyage of the tugboat Eppleton Hall. This boat is in the collection of San Francisco Maritime NHP, and we have very few copies. The price of the book went way up after a YouTube video about the boat was posted. We'd like to make an electronic copy for... View More

Fritz-Howard Raymond Clapp
Fritz-Howard Raymond Clapp
answered on Apr 30, 2024

The public copyright catalog shows assignment in 1979 of the copyright in 122 titles including Eppleton Hall, from Howell-North Books to Leisure Dynamics of California, Inc. California records show that Leisure Dynamics' authority to do business was suspended in 1979 for failure to pay state... View More

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1 Answer | Asked in Copyright and Intellectual Property for California on
Q: Copyright Law - Did I break the law and have to pay for it?

During the contract period with the architect I hired, I captured a portion of the floor plan she designed in a photograph. I then created three different options by placing multiple squares over some spaces in the photo, each in different positions, and posted a question on a community website... View More

James L. Arrasmith
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answered on Apr 18, 2024

Based on the information provided, it's difficult to determine with certainty whether your actions constituted copyright infringement. However, there are a few key points to consider:

1. Copyright ownership: Generally, the creator of an original work, such as an architectural design,...
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