March 27, 2015 Last week, mainstream media highlighted the trademark applications of two sports figures in very different stages of their athletic careers.  News sources recently featured the application of Seattle Seahawks running back Marshawn Lynch for the phrase I’M JUST HERE SO I WON’T GET FINED.  In contrast, headlines discussed the trademark application #WRTS,…

March 16, 2015 A Federal judge has said that a class of plaintiffs, numbering in the hundreds of thousands, may proceed with their claims in a lawsuit seeking to change the manner in which Facebook handles online transactions by minors.  The trial is scheduled to begin on October 19, 2015. The suit seeks to have…

March 13, 2015 As discussed on this blog recently, a group of lawmakers in Iowa have been pushing matching bills in the Iowa House and Senate (Senate Study Bill 1068 and House Study Bill 47), in an effort to specifically exempt certain fantasy sports contests from Iowa’s otherwise broad-reaching anti-gambling laws.  This legislative effort is…

March 13, 2015 This Wednesday, the Federal Trade Commission (the “FTC or Commission”) sued satellite television service provider DirecTV, Inc. and its subsidiary (“DIRECTV”) in federal court in San Francisco.  The Commission has accused DIRECTV of violating the FTC Act and the Restore Online Shoppers’ Confidence Act (“ROSCA”) with purportedly deceptive advertising and sales practices….

March 12, 2015 In August 2014, the Kansas Racing and Gaming Commission issued an opinion that fantasy sports contests that require an entry fee to participate, and that pay out cash prizes, constitute illegal lotteries under Kansas State law.  Based on that Kansas Racing and Gaming Commission opinion, many high profile pay-to-play fantasy sports venues…

March 12, 2015 On March 20, 2015, a jury awarded $7.4 million to the family of artist Marvin Gaye for Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke’s alleged infringement of Gaye’s song “Got to Give it Up.”  Gaye’s family alleged that Pharrell and Thicke’s song “Blurred Lines” infringed Gaye’s intellectual property rights.  Although many have viewed the…

March 11, 2015 Last week, the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (“CRTC” or the “Commission”) issued its first Notice of Violation under Canada’s Anti-Spam Law (“CASL”).  Canadian corporate training company compu.finder Inc. (“Compu-Finder”) has received a fine of $1.1 million for allegedly sending email without the recipients’ consent or a properly functioning unsubscribe mechanism. What…

March 10, 2015 Last week, the Federal Trade Commission (the “FTC” or “Commission”) announced its $7.5 million settlement with Allstar Marketing Group, LLC following allegations of Telemarketing Sales Rule (“TSR”) violations and unfair or deceptive business practices.  The FTC’s investigation was conducted in conjunction with the New York State Office of the Attorney General, which…

March 9, 2015 The Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) and 10 state attorneys general have charged Caribbean Cruise Line, Inc. (“CCL”) and seven of its telemarketing partners with violating the federal Telemarketing Sales Rule.  The suit alleges that CCL and its telemarketing partners made billions of robocalls from October 2011 through July 2012, aimed at skirting…

March 6, 2015 Sports betting is currently illegal in every state except Nevada (and, in some limited form, Delaware, Oregon and Montana).  While some states including, recently, New Jersey, have attempted to legalize sports betting within their respective borders, federal courts have consistently overturned such legislation as being in violation of the 1992 federal Professional…

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