Friday, May 27, 2022

The Owner Of Seth Green's Stolen Bored Ape Said They Have No Plans To Return It; BuzzFeedNews, May 25, 2022

Sarah Emerson, BuzzFeedNews; The Owner Of Seth Green's Stolen Bored Ape Said They Have No Plans To Return It

"BuzzFeed News reported on Tuesday that the theft of Green’s NFTs could present complications for his forthcoming series, White Horse Tavern, which incorporates characters from the actor’s extensive NFT collection. It’s possible that after losing his Bored Ape to a phishing scam this month, Green also lost his license to commercially adapt the monkey. In what has become something of a hostage scenario, Green has since tried to negotiate the return of what he has called his “kidnapped” ape."

Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Triumph Development sends cease and desist letter to Vail Resorts over alleged use of its intellectual property; Vail Daily, May 25, 2022

 , Vail Daily; Triumph Development sends cease and desist letter to Vail Resorts over alleged use of its intellectual property

Letter alleges East Vail housing project is improperly using old designs

"The letter to The Vail Corporation states that the firm has submitted a “nearly identical” design for its East Vail project.

The letter alleges that The Vail Corporation “is well aware that Triumph owns the Intellectual Property. Indeed, (The Vail Corporation) repeatedly expressed interest in modifying the original contract with Triumph to provide for a transfer” of that intellectual property. “Triumph declined, and now (The Vail Corporation) is using it anyway.”"

Monday, May 23, 2022

Webinar: Proud Innovation 2022, part one: From ideas to innovations; United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), Wednesday, June 15, 2022 3 PM - 4:05 EDT

Proud Innovation 2022, part one: From ideas to innovations 

Proud innovation part one -- from ideas to innovations

Do you have an idea you want to bring to life? Join the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) to get inspired by successful innovators turning concepts into creations. Register for the free, online Proud Innovation 2022 series, part one: From ideas to innovations.

The Proud Innovation series highlights the accomplishments of LGBTQIA+ innovators, entrepreneurs, and small business owners who are using their intellectual property to promote advancements and serve as mentors.

This page will be updated with speaker biographies as the event approaches.


(All times ET)

3-3:05 p.m. Program welcome and overview    

  • Sean Wilkerson, Innovation Outreach Program Manager, USPTO 

3:05-3:10 p.m.  Leadership greetings  

3:10-4 p.m.  Panel discussion: How to transform your idea into reality  

Hear how these innovators are using their experiences and inventions to build a better tomorrow:

  • Arianna T. Morales, Ph.D., Staff Research Scientist, General Motors R&D Center
  • Suma Reddy, Co-Founder and CEO, Future Acres 
  • David Taubenheim, Senior Data Scientist, NVIDIA 
  • Theodore ‘TJ’ Ronningen, Ph.D., Chair, Out to Innovate; Research Scientist, Ohio State University (moderator)

4-4:05 p.m. Wrap-up and resources   

  • Sean Wilkerson, Innovation Outreach Program Manager, USPTO 

Arianna T. Morales, Ph.D., Staff Research Scientist, General Motors R&D Center

Republicans took away Disney’s special status in Florida. Now they’re gunning for Mickey himself; Los Angeles Times, May 11, 2022

 HUGO MARTÍN, Los Angeles Times; Republicans took away Disney’s special status in Florida. Now they’re gunning for Mickey himself

"No legislation has been proposed to extend the copyright a third time, and copyright experts and lawmakers say it’s not likely that any legislators will want to lead that battle, given the opposition and fury it generated in the 1990s. Other companies’ copyrighted characters would also expire, sending more notable characters into the public domain. 

Disney critics say the company continues to have influence over copyright law, pointing to the recent naming of Suzanne Wilson as the general counsel and associate register of copyrights for the United States Copyright Office. She formerly oversaw intellectual property and interactive and media legal functions for Walt Disney Co.

Legal experts say the debate over copyright protection is moot because the only version of Mickey Mouse that is expiring is the 1928 black-and-white one depicted in “Steamboat Willie.” Copyright protections remain in place for later versions of Mickey Mouse, the more commercially recognized one that wears white gloves, has bigger ears, distinctive eyes and a pet dog named Pluto, according to experts.

Crucially, Disney also still holds trademark protection on Mickey Mouse, which does not expire. While a copyright keeps other companies from replicating the Mickey Mouse image, a trademark ensures that other companies can’t use the Mickey Mouse image in a way that might suggest their products are made by Disney."

New Bill to Limit Copyright to 56 Years, Would be Retroactive; PetaPixel, May 13, 2022

JAMES DERUVO, PetaPixel; New Bill to Limit Copyright to 56 Years, Would be Retroactive

"Senator Josh Hawley has introduced a bill that would cap copyright on intellectual property to a maximum of 56 years, with no extensions. If passed, the bill would also retroactively apply to existing copyrights.

f the bill passes it would impact hundreds if not thousands of intellectual works currently enjoying the protection nearly 100 years after the death of the original copyright holder.

Though the bill doesn’t mention Disney specifically by name, the Copyright Clause Restoration Act of 2022, which has been submitted by Republican Senator Josh Hawley (MS), is believed to be a punishment against Disney’s resistance to Florida’s Parental Rights in Education law."

Monday, May 16, 2022

Court Orders ISPs to Block Websites of Three Sites Streaming Copyrighted Video Programming; Lexology, May 12, 2022

 Womble Bond Dickinson (US) LLP - Jeff Lanning, Lexology; Court Orders ISPs to Block Websites of Three Sites Streaming Copyrighted Video Programming

"The United States District Court for the Southern District of New York has issued three virtually identical Default Judgement and Permanent Injunction Orders against,, and for copyright infringement. The three orders include directions requiring all Internet Service Providers (ISPs) in the United States of America to block access to the named websites. In addition, the court ordered third parties to cease providing services of any kind used in connection with the defendants’ operations, including web hosting and banking.

The cases were filed by “movie, television, sports and news content producers and providers in Israel” alleging copyright infringement against the owners and/or operators of the websites, which are “re-broadcasting and streaming, in the United States, Hebrew-language television and online channels and content.”"

Saturday, May 14, 2022

Cornish pub will not change name despite letter from Vogue owner; The Guardian, May 13, 2022

, The Guardian; Cornish pub will not change name despite letter from Vogue owner

"A new letter was sent to the owners on Friday afternoon in which a Condé Nast lawyer admitted it was a mix-up.

He said: “You are quite correct to note that further research by our team would have identified that we did not need to send such a letter on this occasion.”"

Friday, May 13, 2022

Miriam DeChant Named Associate Register of Copyrights and Director of Public Information and Education; U.S. Copyright Office, May 10, 2022

U.S. Copyright Office; Miriam DeChant Named Associate Register of Copyrights and Director of Public Information and Education

"Register of Copyrights Shira Perlmutter has announced the appointment of Miriam DeChant as Associate Register of Copyrights and Director of Public Information and Education (PIE), effective May 8, 2022. DeChant will direct PIE as it provides information about copyright law and practices to the public, implements the Copyright Office’s communications plan, and organizes educational and outreach programs. She is an expert copyright attorney and will serve as one of four legal advisors to the Register of Copyrights.

“I am delighted to welcome Miriam to this important position,” said Perlmutter. “Her knowledge of copyright and her extensive experience managing programs to broaden access to intellectual property systems will be a valuable addition to our senior management team.”

DeChant comes to the Office from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, where she served as director of the Global IP Academy, providing domestic and international intellectual property capacity-building, technical assistance, and education policy and programs. She has served as co-lead of the Gender Committee under the U.S. Department of Commerce Equity Council.

Previously, she directed the Philadelphia Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts and was the founding administrator of the PA Patent pro bono program to provide under-resourced inventors, artists, startups, and creative nonprofits with legal assistance.

DeChant earned a JD from Villanova University School of Law, where she was a member of the Villanova Environmental Law Journal. She has an undergraduate degree in the design field from Colorado State University."

Friday, May 6, 2022

What Is Happening to the People Falling for Crypto and NFTs; The New York Times, May 5, 2020

Farhad Manjoo, The New York Times; What Is Happening to the People Falling for Crypto and NFTs

"In the past year Yuga Labs, the well-funded start-up that makes Bored Apes, has embarked on a parade of new and even farther-out digital spinoffs of its simians. Its latest ventures have highlighted the head-scratching, money-burning, broken-casino vibe of what’s being called the internet’s next big thing. Cryptocurrencies, blockchains, NFTs and the constellation of hyped-up technologies known as “web3” have been celebrated as a way to liberate the internet from the tech giants who control it now. Instead what’s happening with Bored Apes suggests they’re doing the opposite: polluting the digital world in a thick haze of errors, swindles and expensive, largely unregulated financial speculation that ruins whatever scrap of trust still remains online...

But how many people have to lose their shirts before we realize that web3 isn’t a solution to any of our problems?"

Protecting and Enforcing IP Rights in the Metaverse; The National Law Review, April 22, 2022

Anthony V. Lupo, James Williams, Dan Jason, ArentFox Schiff LLP, The National Law Review; Protecting and Enforcing IP Rights in the Metaverse

"Many brands have taken steps to proactively protect their intellectual property rights for use in connection with metaverse-related goods and services. This may include filing new trademark registrations or purchasing blockchain domains. But enforcing those rights poses a significant challenge. In this alert, we discuss ways to identify and combat trademark and copyright infringement in the metaverse.

What is The Metaverse?

The metaverse is a persistent, digital environment that will allow individuals to seamlessly transition between their physical and virtual worlds."

Thursday, May 5, 2022

Trademark and copyright considerations for NFTs; Reuters, May 2, 2022

Sharon Urias, Reuters ; Trademark and copyright considerations for NFTs

"NFTs are mostly used to verify ownership of digital goods. An easy way to understand NFTs is to think of them as unalterable certificates of authenticity for digital goods. For example, if someone purchases a piece of digital art, the NFT acts to validate and verify ownership and authenticity of the artwork. In the "real world," the closest analogy is an autographed original painting that is authenticated by the artist's signature or a certificate of authenticity issued by a reputable source...

One common question asked by clients is whether, when they purchase NFTs, they also obtain the copyright associated with it. The answer is: Not necessarily. It is important to understand what is included in the smart contract that confers the purchaser's rights to the digital asset. Similar to the purchase of a physical painting in our analogy above, although the purchaser has acquired the right to display the work, and to resell it, ownership of the copyright is not automatically conveyed.

The artist owns the copyright unless the author assigns it to the purchaser...

NFTs present interesting and novel questions for trademarks as well...

One of the questions to be resolved is whether traditional trademark legal doctrines, such as the first-sale doctrine, protects a seller, such as StockX, or whether the NFTs are new, distinct products that seek to capitalize on the trademark owners' marks...

It is always challenging for the law to keep pace with the expansion and development of new technologies and innovations. It is no different with NFTs. With the increased growth of NFTs, the need for protection also grows. Although NFTs present many opportunities for businesses, it is essential that NFT sellers clearly delineate in the smart contract what is and is not permitted with respect to intellectual property rights. In that way, both NFT sellers and buyers will be able to protect themselves and best monetize these assets."

Wednesday, May 4, 2022

"All of the Marvels": Author Douglas Wolk on the "biggest story ever told"; CBS News, May 1, 2022

CBS News; "All of the Marvels": Author Douglas Wolk on the "biggest story ever told"

"Since the Dawn of Time (technically, the 1960s, to be precise), a tale has been building: a single connected narrative involving thousands of characters, and millions of pages of comics. The Marvel Universe, says writer Douglas Wolk, contains the biggest story that has ever been told. "It all happens in the same setting," he said. "Stories that happened in 1961 or 1962 have consequences in comics that are coming out this week."

Wolk, a Marvel expert, patiently explained to correspondent Luke Burbank (a non-comic-book person) that Marvel might be the longest-running and most voluminous story told in human history … and it's all connected, meaning if The Hulk stubbed his toe back in 1979, Captain America could be dealing with the consequences in 2022.  

"All of those events are its history, its past, what it can draw on for this perpetually-evolving story," said Wolk. "Not just a continuous story going on for six decades, but the continuous story going on in many, many threads at once that can cross each other at any time.""

Find Yourself in Copyright Exhibit; U.S. Copyright Office

 U.S. Copyright Office; Find Yourself in Copyright Exhibit

"Copyright serves all of us, incentivizing creation and enriching our culture. Find Yourself in Copyright explores how U.S. copyright law has evolved and how the millions of copyright claims registered with the Office illustrate the varied nature of original works. Based on the exhibit located at the Copyright Office, here, you will learn about the story of copyright in the United States and the Copyright Office’s key role. 

Interested in more? Explore the resources on our History and Education page, follow our Copyright: Creativity at Work blog, and when the Madison Building in Washington, DC, reopens to the public, be sure to visit our exhibit on the fourth floor."

Find Star Wars in Copyright; Library of Congress, May 4, 2022

 , Library of Congress; Find Star Wars in Copyright

"If you’ve ever watched The Big Bang Theory, you know that the guys are obsessed with Star Wars. In one episode, Leonard suggests a Star Wars marathon weekend to Sheldon, who replies with “Movies or video games? Or board games? Or trading card games? Or Legos? Or dress up? Or comic books? Or dramatic readings of novelizations? Yes to all!” They settle on the online game. The scene just scratches the surface of all the Star Wars derivative works, many of which I owned “A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. . . .” (or, more accurately, forty-some years ago in Pittsburgh).

So, just how many hits do you think searching “Star Wars” gets in the Copyright Public Records System? On this Star Wars Day, I got more than 8,400. Now, not all of them are related to the first Star Wars movie, registered by Twentieth Century-Fox in 1977—for example, some are about the star wars defense system from the 1980s. But most are on topic, and several can be seen in the Find Yourself in Copyright exhibit."

Chinese hackers took trillions in intellectual property from about 30 multinational companies; CBS News, May 4, 2022

 NICOLE SGANGA, CBS News; Chinese hackers took trillions in intellectual property from about 30 multinational companies

"A yearslong malicious cyber operation spearheaded by the notorious Chinese state actor, APT 41, has siphoned off an estimated trillions in intellectual property theft from approximately 30 multinational companies within the manufacturing, energy and pharmaceutical sectors.

A new report by Boston-based cybersecurity firm, Cybereason, has unearthed a malicious campaign — dubbed Operation CuckooBees — exfiltrating hundreds of gigabytes of intellectual property and sensitive data, including blueprints, diagrams, formulas, and manufacturing-related proprietary data from multiple intrusions, spanning technology and manufacturing companies in North America, Europe, and Asia. 

"We're talking about Blueprint diagrams of fighter jets, helicopters, and missiles," Cybereason CEO Lior Div told CBS News. In pharmaceuticals, "we saw them stealing IP of drugs around diabetes, obesity, depression." The campaign has not yet been stopped.

Cybercriminals were focused on obtaining blueprints for cutting-edge technologies, the majority of which were not yet patented, Div said.

The intrusion also exfiltrated data from the energy industry – including designs of solar panel and edge vacuum system technology. "This is not [technology] that you have at home," Div noted. "It's what you need for large-scale manufacturing plants.""

Hawley to introduce legislation targeting Disney copyright protections; Washington Examiner, May 2, 2022

 Zachary Halaschak, Washington Examiner ; Hawley to introduce legislation targeting Disney copyright protections

"The copyright on Disney’s classic Steamboat Willie Mickey Mouse, the first iteration of the character, is set to expire at the end of 2023, and Rep. Jim Banks (R-IN) recently wrote to Disney CEO Bob Chapek telling him that he and some other GOP lawmakers oppose “further extensions applicable” to the company’s copyrights. Banks argued those should become public domain. 

Republicans in both Florida and Washington, D.C., have been upset about Disney’s public lobbying against the Florida legislation, which is called the Parental Rights in Education bill but has been branded the “Don't Say Gay” bill by critics. The legislation bans classroom instruction of sexual orientation and gender identity through the third grade. 

Disney has successfully lobbied for copyright extensions in the past. Disney pushed for the Copyright Act of 1976 and then worked to get the Copyright Term Extension Act of 1998 signed into law. Detractors of the latter bill had branded it the “Mickey Mouse Protection Act.”...

Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-CO) also recently tweeted, “Next year, the woke Disney lobbyists will ask Congress to extend Micky Mouse’s trademark. I think not.”"

Tuesday, May 3, 2022

Most. Important. Copyright. Fair. Use. Case. Ever! JDSupra, April 13, 2022

Bruce EwingDorsey & Whitney LLP; JDSupra; Most. Important. Copyright. Fair. Use. Case. Ever!

"What makes Warhol Foundation arguably the most important fair use case of all time is that the holdings of Campbell and Google have been characterized as being limited to parody and software, respectively, and sometimes not applied in other contexts. But Warhol Foundation is a case in which one artist made alterations to the work of another to create a new work with a concededly different message. If that new work is deemed to be a fair use of the prior work as a matter of law, then the fair use defense is likely to be broadened significantly across a wide range of artistic categories and fact patterns."

The Seizure of Jewish Intellectual Property Ahead of World War II; Library of Congress, April 28, 2022

, Library of Congress; The Seizure of Jewish Intellectual Property Ahead of World War II

"The following is a guest post by Marilyn Creswell, information resources assistant at the University of Michigan Law School. She served as Librarian-in-Residence at the U.S. Copyright Office from July 2020 to April 2021.

As the United States enters the Days of Remembrance of the Victims of the Holocaust, we remember the many hardships Jewish people have overcome. In this blog we specifically explore the lesser-known area of intellectual property (IP) leading up to and during World War II. Beginning in 1933, the Nazi German state began pressuring Jewish business owners to sell their businesses far below market value. By 1938, a majority of Jewish-owned businesses were already sold or out of business when this process, called Aryanization, became compulsory after Kristallnacht.1 As part of the seizure of businesses and personal property, the ability of Jewish people to benefit from their intellectual property was also severely restricted. A 1939 executive order required all Jewish men to add “Israel” as a second name and women to add “Sara.”2 This made it easier for Nazi officials to deny intellectual property registrations and renewals to Jewish applicants, cutting them off from the IP system.3 While the loss of IP rights pales in comparison to the horrific death tolls during World War II, its loss is another indignity the Jewish people suffered and source of wealth extracted at the hands of the Nazis.

In some instances, works by Jewish authors were nearly completely reproduced and distributed by others without their consent. One example of an Aryanized work is Alice Urbach’s So kocht man in Wien!, a Viennese cookbook. Urbach was forced to transfer the rights to her book, which was then republished with new authorial credit to “Rudolf Rösch.” The new work kept most of the original texts and photographs of her cooking demonstrations but removed elements celebrating Vienna’s diversity.4 In the field of medicine, Dr. Josef Löbel’s Knaurs Gesundheitslexikon was a health encyclopedia that, after the Otto Liebmann publishing house was taken over by a Nazi publisher, was republished by the author Herbert Volkmann under the pseudonym “Peter Hiron.” Volkmann even added new sections on race, homosexuality, and prison psychology. He similarly usurped authorship for Dr. Walter Guttman’s Medizinische Terminologie and its ongoing publications.5

Public domain works were revised to remove references to Jewish people and culture. For example, Fritz Stein presented a new version of Handel’s Occasional Oratorio (Gelegenheits Oratorium) in 1935 that added state-promoting verses and removed references to Jacob, Jehovah, and the full aria “When Israel, like the bounteous Nile.” In 1941, Handel’s Jephtha was renamed Das Opfer and changed so its Jewish history was reframed as a broader narrative about nationalism. The text of his Judas Maccabeus was not only rewritten to omit Jewish references, but it went so far as to make it into a “patriotic fold oratorio” and eventually transplanted Judas with a Field Marshall, a powerful military dictator analogous to the Führer.6 Also in 1941, all theatrical productions required permission from the Reich Dramaturgy, which banned Shakespeare’s historical plays but encouraged the broadcast and production of the anti-Semitic Merchant of Venice.7"

Google honors the Black inventor who likely inspired the phrase 'the real McCoy'; NPR, May 2, 2022

Joe Hernandez, NPR ; Google honors the Black inventor who likely inspired the phrase 'the real McCoy'

"Pull up Google on Monday, and you'll see a doodle of a Black man next to a stack of patents, gazing at an old-fashioned train.

That's Elijah McCoy, the revolutionary Black inventor who was born 178 years ago today...

McCoy patented his invention in 1872 and continued to improve on the design."

Monday, May 2, 2022

China Continues to Fall Short of Promises to Protect Intellectual Property, U.S. Says; The New York Times, April 27, 2022

 , The New York Times; China Continues to Fall Short of Promises to Protect Intellectual Property, U.S. Says

"The Office of the United States Trade Representative criticized China, Russia and other countries on Wednesday for continuing to fall short of promises to protect intellectual property in a report that cataloged various infringements by America’s trading partners.

The annual report placed 27 trading partners on so-called watch lists for intellectual property infringement, and labeled Argentina, Chile, China, India, Indonesia, Russia and Venezuela as being on a “priority watch list” of countries that had the most egregious practices or the biggest effect on U.S. businesses...

China remains the largest single source of counterfeit and pirated goods, accounting for more than 83 percent of what global authorities seized in 2020, the report said. That included medical products like Covid-19 testing kits, N95 respirator masks, sanitizers and disinfectants."

The CASE Act for Libraries and Archives; Library of Congress; May 2, 2022

, Library of Congress ; The CASE Act for Libraries and Archives

"Calling all libraries and archives! You may have heard about the CASE Act and the establishment of the Copyright Claims Board, or CCB for short, a new forum for resolving copyright disputes involving damages of up to $30,000, staffed by experts in copyright law. But did you know that qualifying libraries and archives can preemptively opt out of participating in the CCB even before any claim is brought against them? Here is what you need to know.

The Basics 

The Copyright Office respects the important roles that libraries and archives play in our society. In fact, libraries and archives enjoy certain exemptions under copyright law, like lending hard copies of works to patrons or to other libraries. Libraries and archives also enjoy the unique opportunity to preemptively opt out of future CCB proceedings if they so choose. In other words, these organizations can decide that they will not participate in any claims brought against them in the CCB, so that copyright claims against them can only be brought in federal court. Libraries and archives are not required to preemptively opt out of proceedings. In fact, they may wish to not preemptively opt out, since the CCB is more cost-effective than federal court, and all claims are decided by three officers with copyright law expertise.

Who Is Covered 

Libraries or archives that qualify under 17 USC § 108 can elect to preemptively opt out. The preemptive opt out will apply not only to the institution but also to any employees acting within the scope of their employment. This means, if the institution has preemptively opted out, the CCB will not allow copyright claims against them or their employees to proceed.

How to Preemptively Opt Out

The process is simple. To preemptively opt out, libraries and archives must submit a form on and self-certify their qualifying status. Afterward, the institution will be added to a publicly available list on and will never be asked to participate in any future CCB proceedings. There is no fee associated with doing so, and the status does not need to be renewed. However, it should be noted that if a claimant serves a claim before the preemptive opt-out is posted online, the institution should then follow the directions provided in the served notice to opt out of that claim.

If the Library or Archives Does Not Preemptively Opt Out

Participation in a CCB proceeding is voluntary for everyone. Libraries and archives that do not preemptively opt out can still opt out of participating in a CCB proceeding on a claim-by-claim basis. Libraries and archives, like any other potential CCB participant, should consider the pros and cons of using the CCB as an alternative to federal court litigation. You can learn more about the claim-by-claim opt-out process at

Ready for more? Visit for more information on the preemptive opt-out option."