Can you infringe street art?

LMNPOPI, a nationally known street artist, sued XYZ Films for copyright infringement for using LMNPOPI’s street art in their movie, Bushwick, without her permission. The District Court for the Eastern District of New York ruled that this was not copyright infringement, though, because the use of the art was so minimal that its use was considered “fair use”.  If this art had been used in a less public area, however, the artist might well have prevailed.

Can Artificial Intelligence have its inventions patented?

With recent advancements in artificial intelligence (AI), it has become possible for an AI system to create inventions, but the question is whether or not those inventions could be protected under US patent law.  So far, the answer is “no”.  The US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) says that AI systems aren’t classified as “inventors” because only people can be inventors, and for this reason, AI generated inventions cannot be protected by a patent.

USPTO Helps Battle COVID-19

The US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) now has an “IP Marketplace” web platform where they publish patents that claim technologies that could help fight COVID-19. That platform goes further to identify whether licensing is available.  The listed patents span numerous fields, including prevention, treatment, helpful equipment, and even include inventions created for other diseases that might help battle COVID-19. 

Willfulness Not Needed for Trademark Infringement Action

In Romag Fasteners, Inc. v. Fossil Group, Inc., fka Fossil, Inc., No. 18-1233 (Argued Jan. 14, 2020, Decided April 23, 2020), the Supreme Court ruled that in a trademark infringement action, the heightened standard of “willfulness” is not needed to obtain damages against a defendant. This makes it much easier for manufacturers to secure profits for infringement from unauthorized online resellers, which is especially significant as ever greater numbers of sales are conducted online.

Billy Joel Sued for Copyright Infringement

Billy Joel was sued for copyright infringement, and it had nothing to do with his music. He hired a contractor to renovate his Oyster Bay mansion in Long Island, but when he fired that contractor and hired a new one to do the same job, he was sued for copyright infringement, on the grounds that the new architectural plans infringed the plans of the previous contractor.

USPTO extends deadlines….again.

The United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) extended until July 1, 2020 the time for patent applicants to file various patent-related documents and fees.  The extensions only apply to small and micro entities, and only where the original deadline was on or after March 27, 2020.

The First Ever Teleconferenced Supreme Court Hearing

The U.S. Supreme Court held its first ever oral argument over teleconference, which was live-streamed to the public. The case was concerned with the registrability of’s name, even though simply added “.com” to the end of a common word. Following’s win in two U.S. District Courts, the USPTO petitioned the Supreme Court for review in US Patent and Trademark Office v. B.V. (Argued May 4, 2020).