Criminal Copyright: No Electronic Theft Act•The No Electronic Theft Act(NET ACT) is a federal statute that criminalizes certain copyright infringement. The NET Act prohibits any person from willfully infringing a copyright for the purpose of either commercial advantage or financial gain or by reproduction or distribution even without commercial advantage or financial gain, including by electronic means. •Thus, it is a federal crime to reproduce, share, or distribute copyrighted electronic works including movies, songs, software programs, and video games.
Trademark•Businesses often develop company names, as well as advertising slogans, symbols, and commercial logos to promote the sale of their goods and services. •A markis any trade name, symbol, word, logo, design, or device used to identify and distinguish goods of a manufacturer, seller, or provider. •The Lanham (Trademark) Act provides federal protection to trademarks, service marks, and other marks. This act is intended to 1) protect the owner’s investment and goodwill in a mark and 2) prevent customers from being confused about the origin of goods and services.
Registration of a Mark•Marks can be registered with the PTO in Washington D.C. •A registrant must file an application with the PTO wherein the registrant designates the name, symbol, slogan, or logo that he is requesting to be registered. •A Registrant must either prove that he has used the intended mark in commerce or state that he intends to use the mark in commerce within six months from the filing of the application. •Once the PTO has issued a registration of the mark, the owner is entitled to use the ® symbol with his or her mark. •The mark can be renewed for unlimited 10-year periods.
Trademark: Qualifying•To qualify for federal protection a mark must be either 1) distinctive or 2) have acquired a secondary meaning. •A distinctivemark would be a word or design that is unique. It therefore qualifies as a mark. The words of the mark must not be ordinary words or symbols. •Ordinary words or symbols that have taken on a secondary meaningcan qualify as marks. These are words or symbols that have an established meaning but have acquired a secondary meaning that is attached to a product or service.
Trademark Infringement•The owner of a trademark can sue a third party for the unauthorized use of the mark. •To succeed in a trademark infringementcase, the owner must prove that 1) The defendant infringed the plaintiff’s mark by using it in an unauthorized manner and 2) such use is likely to cause confusion, mistake, or deception of the public as to the origin of the goods or services. •A successful plaintiff can recover 1) the profits made by the infringer through the unauthorized use of the mark, 2) damages caused to the plaintiff’s business and reputation, 3) an order requiring the defendant to destroy all goods containing the mark, 4) an injunction preventing future infringement.
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- Fall '07
- United States Constitution, Public domain