Latest Articles

These boots were made for walkin’– no not your ugg boots, my UGG® boots. On May 10, 2019, an eight-person jury in Illinois federal court found Sydney-based company Australian Leather Ltd. and owner Adnan Oygur liable for willful infringement of the “UGG” trademark (U.S. Reg. No. 3,050,925), registered to Deckers Outdoor Corporation since 2005. In Deckers Outdoor Corporation v. Australian Leather Pty Ltd, 1:16-cv-03676 (N.D. Ill.), Oygur, accused of selling 12 pairs of boots called…
Over the past couple of years there have been several important conversations regarding intellectual property issues in the beauty industry. This industry faces a persistent issue of copycat beauty looks that are not credited to the original inspiration. For example, earlier this year Instagram account Diet Prada called out two editorial beauty looks worn by Rihanna in a magazine, arguing that the two makeup artists and creative teams had ripped off looks from their…
  Most textile and wool products have a label listing the fiber content, country of origin, and identity of the manufacturer. In view of recent concerns about ocean pollution, a few states have passed bills to require polyester clothing to have a label warning consumers about washing their garments to prevent fiber pollution. Current Legislation Connecticut recently passed The Act Concerning Clothing Fiber Pollution, House Bill 5360, making it the first state to implement…
On July 27, 2017, Crowell & Moring will be presenting a webinar hosted by the United States Fashion Industry Association on the hottest IP Supreme Court decisions from 2017 that will affect the fashion and retail industries.  Anne Li and Preetha Chakrabarti of Crowell will be discussing Star Athletica, LLC v. Varsity Brands, Inc. and Impression Prods., Inc. v. Lexmark Intl. Inc. The Star Athletica case involving the copyrightability of cheerleader uniform designs will have a…
UPDATE to our September 2015 post On March 22, 2017, a 6-2 Supreme Court found Varsity Brands’ designs on cheerleading uniforms to be copyrightable, holding that “an artistic feature of the design of a useful article is eligible for copyright protection if the feature (1) can be perceived as a two- or three-dimensional work of art separate from the useful article and (2) would qualify as a protectable pictorial, graphic, or sculptural work—either on its…
On February 10, 2017, the Federal Bar Association will host a day-long Fashion Law Conference at Parsons School of Design (Starr Foundation Hall in the New School’s University Center) during New York Fashion Week! Please join Crowell & Moring’s Frances Hadfield and Preetha Chakrabarti, as well as a host of other speakers and experts, for our cutting-edge fashion law panels. Speakers include in-house counsel from The Estee Lauder Companies, Inc., Google, Macy’s, and Westfield Corp.…
Yesterday, an intermediate New York State appellate court, the First Department of the Appellate Division of the New York Supreme Court, reinstated the conviction of an Ex-Goldman Sachs programmer, Sergey Aleynikov. At issue here are allegations that Mr. Aleynikov violated the New York penal code by copying source code for a proprietary high frequency trading system at Goldman Sachs before he left to join a competitor.  This case is noteworthy for the twists and turns…
1.  Clearly label Christmas cards as “Confidential” if these contain secret wishes. 2.  Amend Confidentiality Agreements and Employee Manual to include the required Whistleblower language – those elves have rights. 3.  Have robust exit interviews with all departing elves, reminding them of their obligations to keep “reindeer games” secret. 4.  Insist that expert toy makers are warned not to reveal secret information while enjoying (too much) mulled wine with ‘Happy Holidays’-industry peers. 5.  Further restrict…
On July 26, 2016, FDA issued an updated warning on beauty products, warning consumers to avoid certain “skin creams, beauty and antiseptic soaps, and lotions,” particularly those boasting “anti-aging” or “skin lightening” benefits, as potentially containing mercury.  While the dangers of mercury exposure are well-known, mercury’s ubiquity in certain beauty products is not.  Products that claim to “remove age spots, freckles, blemishes, and wrinkles,” including products targeting teenagers enduring acne, may contain mercury.  Checking the…
On July 5, 2016, the Ninth Circuit affirmed the conviction of David Nosal, an ex-employee of Korn/Ferry, an executive search firm, who left to start a competing firm. With Nosal’s knowledge and encouragement, two other former employees of Korn/Ferry used a current employee’s credentials to gain access to the Korn/Ferry database and take confidential information. U.S. v. Nosal, No. 14-10037, 2016 WL 3608752 at 6 (9th Cir. July 5, 2016). The prosecutors charged Nosal…