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Royal Caribbean, ‘The Killing’: Intellectual Property

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Aug. 12 (Bloomberg) -- Loral Space & Communications Inc. won the reversal of a $283 million patent verdict against its former Space Systems/Loral unit after a federal judge voiced skepticism at the basis for the jury’s determination.

Satellite network systems firm ViaSat Inc. sued for patent infringement and breach of contract in 2012, and a jury in April awarded the damages. U.S. District Judge Marilyn Huff in San Diego ordered a new trial in November on damages.

New York-based Loral, which operates telecommunications satellites, reported $1.1 billion in revenue for fiscal 2011. ViaSat, based in Carlsbad, California, provides wireless systems and logged $1.11 billion in revenue last year.

The case is ViaSat v. Space Systems/Loral Inc., 12-cv-00260, U.S. District Court, Southern District of California (San Diego).

For more patent news, click here.

Trademark

Alibaba Cooperates With Kering on Fakes After Lawsuit Pulled

Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., China’s biggest e-commerce company, is cooperating with Kering SA to stem the sale of fake products after the maker of Gucci withdrew a lawsuit that alleged Alibaba participated in violating trademarks.

The claims were withdrawn after a dialog between the two companies, an Alibaba spokeswoman, Florence Shih, said yesterday. The suit, filed in New York on July 9, said China’s biggest e-commerce company and affiliates made it possible to sell fakes throughout the world, according to court documents.

Counterfeits of Kering brands such as Yves Saint Laurent, Bottega Veneta and Balenciaga proliferate on the Internet shopping platforms of Alibaba, the Paris-based company said in its lawsuit. Alibaba, whose initial public offering may be the biggest in U.S. history, has been cracking down on fakes by banning listings that may breach intellectual property rules, forcing vendors to make deposits and using a ratings system.

Royal Caribbean Appeals ‘Broadway At Sea’ Trademark Rejection

Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd., the Miami, Florida-based cruise line, filed an appeal of a decision by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office denying registration of the term “Broadway at Sea” as a trademark, according to the patent office database. The line offers cruises featuring performances of Broadway musicals, according to its website.

The cruise line filed the application in May 2013, and said it plans to use the mark for stage shows aboard a cruise ship.

The patent office rejected the application, saying the term wasn’t distinctive enough to be afforded registration.

Sturgis Bike Rally Sponsors Sue Biker Gear Retailer Over Marks

Sturgis Motorcycle Rally Inc., sponsor of the event that draws more than 400,000 motorcycle enthusiasts to a small town in South Dakota every August, sued a California maker of motorcycle gear for trademark infringement.

The suit, filed in federal court in Gainesville, Georgia, accuses Renegade Investments LLC’s Renegade Classics unit of using the rally’s trademarks on motorcycle-related products without a license. Rally sponsors say the event brings $500 million to the region annually.

According to court papers, the alleged infringement dates back to at least 2011.

Renegade Classics, based in Sacramento, California, didn’t respond immediately to an e-mailed request for comment.

The case is Sturgis Motorcycle Rally Inc. v. Mortimer, 2:14-cv-00175, U.S. District Court, Northern District of Georgia (Gainesville).

For more trademark news, click here.

Copyright

‘Killing’ Star’s Sweater Design Not Protectable, Court Rules

A sweater worn by the female star on the original Danish version of the television detective program “The Killing” was the subject of a copyright battle between a knitwear design company in the Faroe Islands and a Danish clothing manufacturer, the U.K.’s Guardian newspaper reported.

The sweater, knit in star pattern in black and white, became so popular that a special “tribute” website popped up, celebrating the design, according to the Guardian.

Sweater designers Gudrun & Gudrun then sued Denmark’s Stof og Sty for selling a knockoff version, saying it infringed the copyright on the knitting pattern, the Guardian reported.

A Danish court rejected the claim, finding that the sweater’s design came from a centuries old knitting pattern and wasn’t eligible for copyright protection, according to the newspaper.

For more copyright news, click here.

To contact the reporter on this story: Victoria Slind-Flor in San Francisco at vslindflor@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net Charles Carter, David E. Rovella

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