- 1) DISCUSSION QUESTION
The goal of intellectual property law is to encourage innovation. Individuals and companies will be far less likely to create new or improved products, services, and works such as movies and albums if others can readily copy and profit from their efforts.
Choose one of the scenarios below and determine which type of intellectual property law applies and whether it would, in fact, provide any remedy. Remember to identify and explain the elements necessary to claim protection as intellectual property, why you think those elements are or are not present, and what other information you would need to make this determination.
- William Writer has developed a great idea for a novel. It will feature a young magician named Henry Pryor who attends a special high school for magicians. Henry has many interesting friends and even searches for the Philosopher’s Rock.
- Karen Kitchens is a fantastic cook. Her best dish is fried chicken. Her fried chicken is so good that her friends suggest she start a restaurant. After some thought Karen agrees. She plans to open Kitchen’s Fried Chicken, but because the name is a bit long she decided to shorten it to KFC. Her sign will be red and white and feature an image of Karen’s father, a white-haired old man with a goatee.
- Sandy Secretary works for a huge cola company. The company is famous for its secret formula that it has used for over 100 years. One day while looking for something in the boss’s office, Sandy finds a piece of paper that lists the secret formula. Sandy secretly makes a copy of the secret formula and offers to sell it to a competitor.
2) PEER REVIEW #1 (TANYA)
The scenario I choose concerning Karen wanting to open up a restaurant as Kitchen’s Fried Chicken but the name will be shortened to KFC, and the logo and colors are the same as the fast-food chain Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC). Karen cannot open the restaurant under the name KFC because it is a registered trademark. Consumers will get both of the establishments confused because they both have the same acronym. The two names are similar and will get consumers confused when they go to buy chicken because both restaurants sell fried chicken. The color of the logos and the guy with a white beard is the same as well. Businesses use trademarks to differentiate between competing products. Karen has her own recipe for her fried chicken, and Kentucky Fried Chicken has a special recipe that is a trade secret. Their recipe is the companies most valuable asset. Kentucky Fried Chicken secret recipe has a competitive advantage over Karen regular chicken recipe. The famous food chain has opted for trade secret protection creation cannot be patented. Kentucky Fried Chicken is the first restaurant to use to use (KFC) as a trademark and owns it. When the trademark is registered, it is valid nationally. When Karen or if she tried to register the acronym and business name, the registration notifies the public that it is in use. Karen’s trademark is the same as the fast food chain, and it is considered a trademark infringement. The fast-food chain can sue Karen, and she will have to change the name of her restaurant. The rightful owner can file an injunction prohibiting further violation, meaning Karen cannot sell her product to consumers until she changes her business name and logo. The situation can cause Karen attorney fee’s, profits the infringer earned on the product, three times actual damages and destruction of infringing material.
3) PEER REVIEW #2 (MARLON)
Good afternoon Professor and classmates! In the case of Karen Kitchens and her desire to start a restaurant chain, she could possibly be sued on the grounds of trademark infringement. In a case of trademark infringement, the original trademark owner has to be able to prove that the infringement would confuse consumers about the origin of the product or service. Seeing that Karen Kitchens is looking to name her restaurant "KFC" to shorten the name of her chicken restaurant "Kitchen's Fried Chicken," the name "KFC" is already being used by "Kentucky Friend Chicken." Furthermore, Karen is looking to use the image of her white-haired father who also has a goatee on her signage, and will plaster this on a red and white background. This further blurs the distinction between the Kentucky Friend Chicken and Kitchen's Fried Chicken.