Stephanie Gumm helps companies grow and protect their intellectual property assets worldwide. She serves as a global brand management advisor — from counseling clients on strategic brand choices to trademark clearance, prosecution, licensing and enforcement.
View the full bio for Stephanie Gumm at the Faegre Drinker website.
Posts by Stephanie Gumm
I just recently left Singapore, where the lush gardens and iconic city skyline served as the backdrop for The International Trademark Association’s (INTA) 145th Annual Meeting. This was the second time that INTA’s Annual Meeting was hosted in Asia and the first time in Southeast Asia. While the location was originally planned for the 2020 Meeting, as with most things in life, the pandemic put that on hold. Despite the immense humidity, 8,000 influential brand and IP professionals from around the world came to the Lion City to share their thoughts regarding future considerations for brand owners and the business of innovation.
One consistent theme throughout the conference was that new challenges are facing brand owners today. Several factors appear to be changing the landscape for brands across various industries including, without limitation, the facts that: (1) counterfeiting is on the rise; (2) the value of intangible business assets is increasing; (3) new countries are becoming IP powerhouses due to global trade; and (4) emerging technologies, such as artificial intelligence (AI), NFTs and the metaverse, are changing the way in which consumers interact with the world around them.
Continue reading “Singapore – Where Global IP Professionals Came Together”
Western companies with trademark rights in Russia are feeling the ripple effects of the Ukrainian conflict. In response to the economic sanctions and boycotts imposed by the U.S. and other Western countries, Russia has threatened to suspend the intellectual property rights of companies that have ceased operations in Russia. Additionally, there has recently been an increase in bad faith trademark filings for various brands across a wide range of industries from Chanel to Audi. Moreover, it appears that Russian courts may allow the infringement and misappropriation of trademarks owned by Western companies in light of a recent decision involving the character Peppa Pig, where the court cited sanctions as a basis for refusing to recognize the Western-based company’s intellectual property rights in the popular cartoon character.
Even those businesses with longstanding ties within Russia don’t appear to be safe. Certain companies closing locations in the country in response to the conflict in Ukraine are finding that third parties are filing trademark applications for blatant replicas of their brands. Even more disturbing is that should the Russian government decide to remove trademark protections for Western companies altogether, then a third party could step in and offer goods and services under identical marks. Depending upon how things play out in Russia, Western brand owners are in serious danger of losing their intellectual property investments in the country. Exacerbating the problem for these brands is that finding local counsel willing to assist them may be extremely difficult. Fear for personal safety and the threat of retribution may encourage many trademark attorneys in Russia to steer clear of matters involving companies from “unfriendly” countries.
Continue reading “The Impact on Brands when Trademarks are Used in Military Strategy”
While the legal industry is typically not known as being cutting edge when it comes to adopting innovative technologies, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is taking big steps forward on seeing whether artificial intelligence (AI) may be used during patent and trademark examination to create greater efficiency and consistency with respect to certain routine, high-volume tasks. AI, a technology that refers to “smart” machines that simulate human intelligence, is being examined in many industries to potentially eliminate redundant and routine tasks, and the USPTO is trying to determine whether AI is right for it. Does this mean that future USPTO examiners will be more like C3PO? No. But AI could handle more-routine tasks, which would allow examiners to focus on more-substantive matters related to the examination of trademark and patent filings.
Continue reading “USPTO Embracing New Possibilities with AI”
Based on a recent restitution submission prepared by Faegre Drinker, a federal judge in Harrisburg, Pa. awarded Eli Lilly and Company $1.9 million in restitution from an individual convicted of trafficking in drugs bearing counterfeit trademarks of Lilly and other pharmaceutical companies. The defendant in this matter was sentenced to 70 months in prison and ordered to pay $3.6 million in restitution, the remainder split between the other companies based on the defendant’s conduct involving their trademarks. In this instance, crime clearly didn’t pay for the defendant and success was achieved by partnering with our client to fight counterfeiting and illegal importing. So how does this work?
Continue reading “Counterfeiting: Why Crime Doesn’t Pay”
Amidst public criticism and pressure from corporate sponsors, many well-known brands are taking a hard look at their trademarks and choosing to move in a new direction. These changes are impacting brands in various industries from sports teams, like the currently unnamed Washington NFL team, to retailers, like Trader Joe’s. While appeasing the call for change, an unfortunate consequence with which these brand owners must deal are trademark trolls.
Continue reading “Trademark Trolls – A Danger to Avoid with a Re-brand”
As many brand owners know, WHOIS data is the publicly available information on who has registered a particular internet domain name. In layman’s terms, WHOIS records are akin to land title or property tax records: a record of who owns the internet property of domain names available in .com, .net and other generic top-level domain (gTLD) spaces. Each WHOIS record contains basic contact information for the domain name registrant: name, address, phone number, email address and certain other technical attributes. Since the dawn of the internet, gTLD registrars and registries – those companies who sell domain names – have collected contact information from all registrants at the time of registration.
Continue reading “Restricted Access to WHOIS Data Jeopardizes Brand Owners Online”