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Articles in the Marketing Category

Headline, Internet Contracts, Marketing, Regulation »

[26 Aug 2009 | No Comment | ]
Something For Nothing: Digital and Mobile Promotions, Sweepstakes and Contests

Executives at NBC Universal decided to market reality TV show The Apprentice by launching a national watch-and-win sweepstakes. Viewers were given the opportunity to win a prize of $10,000 by voting for certain Apprentice contestants to be exiled from the group and forced to live in a tent. Those who voted online could participate for free. However, those who voted by text message were charged an entry fee of 99 cents. In 2007, a Georgia woman sued Donald Trump and NBC Universal for operating an illegal lottery in violation of state racketeering statutes. Similar class action lawsuits have also been filed against popular shows such as America’s Got Talent, Deal or No Deal and 1 vs. 100.

Entities, Headline, Intellectual Property, Internet Contracts, Licenses, Litigation, Marketing »

[8 Jun 2009 | No Comment | ]
A Guide To Cease and Desist Letters

The problems began in 2006 when web designer Terry Wilson launched a small business to market her custom-made laptop cases. Because the cases were designed to protect a laptop, like a pod protects a seed, and because she perceived “pod” to be an appealing buzz word, Wilson dubbed her product the TightPod, registered a trademark and began making sales at the domain of the same name. To her surprise, she received a letter from Apple, the company first to file for the trademark “pod”, requesting that she cease using the TightPod name and undertake the costly procedure of rebranding her product.

Contractors, Contracts, Employees, Headline, Internet Contracts, Marketing »

[25 May 2009 | No Comment | ]
Pay To Play: The Risks and Liabilities of Internet Advertising

San Francisco-based marketing company Member Source Media wanted to drive consumers to its branded online promotions. Like its competitors, the company registered several domain names, paid for web advertising and launched a pro-active email marketing campaign. However, the company distinguished itself from other web marketers by relying on a single surefire method of drawing consumers: offering something for nothing. In ubiquitous banner ads and email solicitations, Member Source Media dangled the promise of free gifts, such as laptop computers and iPods, in exchange for taking the time to fill out a few online surveys. These offers ultimately proved to be too good to be true.

Arbitration, Contracts, Headline, Intellectual Property, Internet Contracts, Litigation, Marketing »

[14 May 2009 | No Comment | ]
Taking Names: How To Deal With Cybersquatting

Herbal tea manufacturer Traditional Medicinals wanted to market a trademarked laxative tea product called Smooth Move at the website SmoothMove.com. In 2008, the California-based company tried to register the domain but discovered that the domain had already been claimed by WorldWide Media, an entity which had “parked” the domain with a website showing ads to visitors. Rather than rebrand its product or register a different domain, Traditional Medicinals initiated an arbitration proceeding against WorldWide Media asserting that the domain had been registered in bad faith.

Entities, Featured, Headline, Intellectual Property, Licenses, Marketing »

[16 Apr 2009 | No Comment | ]
A Guide To Fair Use

Fair use is a familiar term to those who are interested in copyright law. Many understand it as a legal principle that somehow justifies the use of copyrighted material, especially since bloggers, filmmakers, artists and other content creators in the digital age tend to be vocal proponents of the concept. But despite the buzz, fair use is not a blanket defense against copyright liability or even a consistent of law.