–Dan Kelly, Attorney

Steve has posted several times on “brand baiting” gimmicks–typically involving spam-type e-mails with enticing pictures or offers of well-known products or brands as rewards for “participation” . . . in, well, God knows what.  (Steve’s previous posts here, here, and here.)  Take a glance at them just to get

Putting aside, for now, the unsettled question of who currently owns the iPad trademark, and Dan’s perspective on Apple’s trademark clearance strategies, from last week, look at what our finely-tuned e-mail spam filter just snagged:

It is a similar story to my previous Free Dell XPS Laptop Spam Scam? blog post from last December. Here, however, the Apple, iPad, and the (possible)

Same drill as yesterday. Another email spam scam? More trademark fair use abuse?

Is it just me, or is the branded email spam coming out of the virtual woodwork, or what?

It appears that spam email — complete with fully branded solicitations — is becoming more and more aggressive, both from legal and technology perspectives.

We

What if you were told that if you agreed to "test" a Dell XPS laptop you could keep it, for free?

Would you expect the offer to be from Dell Computer?

After all, who else but the manufacturer would care to give a computer away for simply having you test it?

Would you at least expect the offer to be affiliated with, or authorized, or approved by Dell Computer?

What if the unsolicited email offer avoided your spam filter and looked something like this?

Would you click on the "CLICK HERE" icon as instructed, or would you scroll all the way down to the bottom of the page to see if you might be able to learn more before clicking?


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Trademark Infringement is a sticky subject online. Our first blog talked about Twitter and trademark infringement and today I want to address trademark infringement in relation to affiliate marketing

Affiliate Marketing is a process that rewards a blog or website for every customer that is brought to the company (the affiliate) that blog or website is promoting. The goal of the affiliate marketer is to bring visitors to the affiliate’s website in efforts to sell the affiliate’s products or services. Affiliate marketers will try numerous things in efforts to market these products or services in efforts to make money. In the past there have been lawsuits brought against marketers like this due to improper claims they were making about a product or service, who endorsed it, and if it worked. 

In August, a complaint like this was filed against not only the affiliate marketers but the affiliate as well. The claim is that the affiliate should be monitoring any and every marketing vehicle and message that is used in relation to its product.


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