DuetsBlog Collaborations in Creativity & the Law

Tag Archives: Twin Cities

What Are You Thinking, Coke Zero?

Posted in Advertising, Articles, Branding, Food, Genericide, Loss of Rights, Marketing, Trademarks, TTAB

  The above advertising billboard is plastered all over the Twin Cities at the moment, and it got me thinking, so here I am, once again, writing about Coke Zero, remember this can? Coke obtained a favorable decision from the TTAB early last year, ruling that ZERO is not generic for a soft drink category,… Continue Reading

Joust Do It? A New Form of Nike Battle Cry?

Posted in Advertising, Articles, Branding, Famous Marks, Marketing, Trademarks, TTAB, USPTO

By now, you’re familiar with my enjoyment in capturing and sharing new billboard signage that hits the streets of the Twin Cities. Question, what tagline might have inspired this one? Was the Minnesota Renaissance Festival inspired by Nike’s famous “Just Do It” tagline? Almost four years ago now, we noted — in this gem from… Continue Reading

Is Ronald McDonald Lovin’ This Fryday?

Posted in Articles, Branding, Food, Infringement, Marketing, Non-Traditional Trademarks, Trademarks

When I recently snapped the above image of a t-shirt on display at a large retailer in the Twin Cities, it made me want to ask the same question many survey experts will ask of respondents to determine whether a likelihood of confusion exists in the marketplace: Who put this out? What percentage of respondents… Continue Reading

A BrandVerb Uber Alles?

Posted in Advertising, Almost Advice, Articles, Branding, Genericide, Loss of Rights, Marketing, Trademarks

Uber, the popular brand that helps people arrange prompt ground transportation, is now also being called a verb. The Star Tribune recently reported that the founder of iHail, a recent competitor of Uber in the Twin Cities market, would like to achieve the same anointed status: “I want iHail to become a verb, just like… Continue Reading

What’s In Your Wallet, a Cafe?

Posted in Articles, Branding, Famous Marks, Food, Marketing, Trademarks, USPTO

Since 2000, Capital One Financial — the nation’s largest direct bank — has been promoting its credit card services by asking What’s in Your Wallet? Three years later it began promoting banking and other financial services using the same iconic tagline, slogan, and question. By 2011, it had achieved so much traction that What’s in Your Wallet? was inducted into the… Continue Reading

Eat More Walleye?

Posted in Advertising, Articles, Branding, Food, Marketing, Non-Traditional Trademarks, Product Configurations, Trademark Bullying, Trademarks

It’s that time of year again, the Minnesota fishing opener is upon us this weekend, so Rapala is sporting its new billboard in the Twin Cities metro area, as shown below: “Winner, winner, walleye dinner,” is an obvious play on the far more frequently uttered “winner, winner, chicken dinner” positive outcome phrase, that apparently derives from early casino… Continue Reading

The Seasonality of Materiality?

Posted in Advertising, Law Suits, Marketing

          A false advertising case filed yesterday in Minnesota federal district court caught my eye: Splash Products, Inc. v. Twinco Romax, LLC and Twinco/Romax Wisconsin, Inc. It is a rather straightforward false advertising case with the typical legal claims you’d expect to see, but what caught my eye is that the parties are going to… Continue Reading

3M v. Shoplet (A Post-It Brand Stick Up?)

Posted in Law Suits

Last Friday Twin Cities Business and the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported on 3M’s recent trademark infringement case filed against online retailer Shoplet. In case you haven’t seen it yet, here is a pdf of the complaint. It asserts a variety of violations of 3M’s exclusive rights in the federally-registered POST-IT trademark, including federal trademark infringement, false designation of… Continue Reading

Webinar: Strategies For Dealing With “Trademark Bullies”

Posted in Trademark Bullying, Trademarks

Last week we announced a trademark seminar taking place in Minneapolis on March 2, 2011, and one of the hot topics to be discussed from 1:15 – 2:30 PM CST, is “Strategies For Dealing With “Trademark Bullies.” Given the special interest in the trademark bullying topic outside and well beyond the Twin Cities, Minnesota Continuing Legal Education has decided to… Continue Reading

Parking Lot Lures & Twins Brand Bait?

Posted in Advertising, Branding, Fair Use, Goodwill, Infringement, Marketing, Trademarks

Guys and gals on the street waiving orange flags aren’t the only parking lot lures in Twins Territory: We’ve talked before about how some of those doing business or advertising in close proximity to Minneapolis’ brand new Target Field — home to the Minnesota Twins — appear to see advantage in using the Twins name (and now logo, and/or trade… Continue Reading

Exposing Two-Face Brands

Posted in AlphaWatch, Branding, Goodwill, Guest Bloggers, Marketing, Trademarks

I’m not talking about brands that say one thing and do another. I’m not talking about brands that don’t live up to their promise. I’m literally talking about brands with two faces. One face may be confident, complicated, technical, professional, and/or formal. Let’s call him, Stephen. The other face might be friendly, simple, approachable, engaging, and/or informal… Continue Reading

Good Bye Google, Hello Whudjagiddumon?

Posted in Mixed Bag of Nuts

Rapala’s brand new Whudjagiddumon? billboard ads are now appearing in the Twin Cities metro area, just in time for Mother’s Day: Last Summer Rapala ran billboard ads featuring the controversial tagline: More Hits Than Google:   So, what is Whudjagiddumon? Here is my proposed entry for Webster’s Dictionary: Whud-ja-giddum-on [whatcha-giddem-on] –noun Another word for Plan B;… Continue Reading

Best Buy, Resurrected From the Trademark Graveyard?

Posted in Branding, Dilution, Domain Names, False Advertising, Infringement, Law Suits, Loss of Rights, Marketing, Trademarks

As a trademark type, something struck me as odd about the Best Buy logo image appearing on the brand new outdoor baseball scoreboard at Target Field, during the Minnesota Twins recent home opener against the Boston Red Sox, so I captured a photograph to discuss it here on DuetsBlog. What caught my eye was the curious placement of the ® federal registration symbol. Its positioning adjacent to the words… Continue Reading

Permission to Exploit Jennifer Aniston’s Right of Publicity?

Posted in Advertising, Agreements, Contracts, Marketing

It is probably safe to assume that Channel 45 obtained permission to use Jennifer Aniston’s likeness and exploit her right of publicity in promoting viewership of syndicated Friends television programs. That’s a deal where everyone appears to win, Channel 45, viewers, advertisers, Aniston, and the other Friends cast members who share in the syndication royalties along with Ms. Aniston…. Continue Reading

What a Crock, Pot That Is . . .

Posted in Branding, Genericide, Infringement, Keyword Ads, Law Suits, Marketing, Search Engines, Trademarks

We’re not talking the foamed footwear Crocs® that Randall Hull wrote about in his What a Croc! post from a couple of weeks ago. Instead, we’re talking slow cookers — on this snow-capped Valentine’s Day in the Twin Cities. Every once in a while a stroll down the grocery store aisle leaves me surprised when… Continue Reading