Business Startup

iVLG News Roundup Week 28: Trademarks; Management; Taxation; Online Privacy; etc.

Trademarks

Hershey’s Granted Trademark for Bar Configuration The US Patent and Trademark Office’s (USPTO) Trademark Trial and Appeal Board granted Hershey’s trademark application for the design and shape of its chocolate bar. The Examining Attorney for the USPTO had refused registration on two grounds: (1) Hershey’s proposed mark was a functional configuration of the goods; and (2) it was a non distinctive configuration that had not acquired distinctiveness as required under Trademark Act Section 2(f), 15 U.S.C. § 1052(f). The Trademark Trial and Appeal Board overruled the examining attorney, finding that the configuration was not functional, and that it was sufficiently distinctive.

Hershey’s Trademark Application Hershey’s description of its mark: “The mark is a configuration of a candy bar that consists of twelve (12) equally-sized recessed rectangular...

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Business Startup

Top Five News Stories: 11/24-11/30

Amazon & Ebay Weigh In On Online Sales Tax Currently online retailers only have to collect state sales taxes if they have a physical presence in that state. If the retailer doesn’t collect the tax, it’s up to the purchaser to send the sales tax to the state. However, this rarely happens. Across the nation lost sales tax revenue from failure to collect online sales taxes is estimated at upwards of $23 billion.

There are a number of bills that have been introduced in Congress this year to create a national scheme for collecting state sales tax in online transactions (e.g., The Marketplace Fairness Act which is currently in the Senate). On Wednesday representatives from Amazon and Ebay testified before congress on...

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