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The Supreme Court issued a decision today In a highly-followed case involving fair use defenses that were asserted by the Andy Warhol Foundation for Visual Arts. The Foundation asserted the defenses in a case that alleged that Andy Warhol’s use of photographs of the musician Prince infringed U.S. copyright laws. The original photographs were taken by professional photographer Lynn Goldsmith, the party alleging infringement with respect to the Warhol works. The Warhol Foundation argued that Warhol’s changes to the photographs were of a “transformative” nature, including because the Warhol works conveyed a different meaning or message, such that there was no infringement under a fair use defense.

The Supreme Court sided with the photographer on the fair use issues raised in the case. The Supreme Court’s opinion was authored by Associate Justice Sonia Sotomayor and six other Associate Justices joined in the opinion. A dissenting opinion was authored by Associate Justice Elena Kagan, who was joined by Chief Justice John Roberts.

The opinion can be found here:

Designing a New Path: USPTO Proposes a Separate Design Patent Practitioner Bar

On May 16, 2023, in a move aimed at enhancing efficiency and expertise in design patent proceedings, the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) to establish a separate design patent practitioner bar. The proposed rule—published in the Federal Register—marks a significant development in the field of design patents, as the creation of a separate bar will seek to enhance efficiency, provide tailored guidance to applicants, and foster collaboration among design patent practitioners—all of which can facilitate the exchange of best practices, insights, and strategies, ultimately enhancing the overall quality of design patent applications and prosecutions. The public comment period for the USPTO’s NPRM lasts through August 14, 2023.

The NPRM issued on May 16, 2023 can be found in PDF format at the following link:

Franchise Law Convention

Firm Attorneys Oliver Ruiz, Keith Kanouse, and John Malloy attended the International Franchise Association’s 2023 Legal Symposium. Located in Washington, D.C., the legal conference covered evolving issues in Franchise Agreements and Franchise Litigation, among many other topics.

World Intellectual Property Day

Intellectual property practitioners across the globe celebrated World Intellectual Property Day or “World IP Day” on April 26th. Established in 2000 by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), the aim of World IP Day is to celebrate innovators and raise awareness about patent, trademark, and copyright law. With a new theme chosen each year, World IP Day 2023 focused on the contributions of women in the IP space. In a statement by WIPO, the organization underscored how women “in all regions are shaping the world through their imagination, ingenuity and hard work . . . .”

Katelyn Malloy Elected President of Intellectual Property Law Society at University of Miami School of Law

The Firm congratulates Law Clerk, Katelyn Malloy, on her recent election as President of the Intellectual Property Law Society at the University of Miami School of Law for the 2023-2024 academic year. IPLS is an active student organization that supports classmates interested in careers in IP. With the help of her executive board, Ms. Malloy plans to host a range of advanced educational events on emerging IP topics, to strengthen mentorship programs by pairing students with IP practitioners, and to solidify Miami Law’s reputation as the IP leader among law schools.