SHOT Show News

“V” is for a Very nerVy Trademark Strategy The “V” is a friendly jab at a prominent SHOT Show exhibitor.  Not a client of mine, Daniel Defense had their first SHOT Show about the same time as mine, and I’ve often expressed my admiration for their marketing prowess at the show.  They sponsor the SHOT Show planner map on my iPad, they’ve sponsored hotel keycards, and even the tops of lunch tables. So I’m unsurprised by creative and aggressive strategies coming from those smart guys.  Still, I was surprised last year to see that they had applied to register  [...]

Are Customizers Infringing on Trademarks?

On December 23rd, I ducked away from the family fun and checked my Facebook page only to find some firearms industry news with trademarks at the heart of the issue.  Y’all know how I love trademarks, and will tell you that they might just be the most valuable asset of your company.  But there are limits.  And I believe those limits were embarrassingly exceeded in a PR debacle that generated a rapid-fire social media response. It turns out that the owners of the most powerful trademark in the firearms industry*, the thousand-pound gorilla, decided to throw some weight  [...]

The Hearing Protection Act and The Rise of Mainstream Suppressors

Capturing the Future in a Can They call it the “Hearing Protection Act.”  Not only is it an exciting possibility to expand gun rights, but it’s a fantastic illustration of how you should ready your business for revolutionary changes. It’s not unusual to see tantalizing proposals for legislation that promises to expand our gun rights.  They usually go nowhere.  But there’s one proposal that has hit the news that might just be the right thing at the right time.  The typical reaction to this no-brainer proposal from industry insiders and knowledgeable  [...]

Donald Trump Gun Law Positions

As a Texan who appreciates a true legal genius who understands the Constitution and firearms law, it’s easy for me to be a Ted Cruz supporter.  I won’t campaign for him here, but I have urged my Facebook friends to download and read the free Kindle sample of his book.  I like what Ted says on the Second Amendment so much I should get his permission to excerpt his book’s section on the subject in these pages.  Not only does he say  [...]

Happy Birthday Royalties No More

The biggest legal news in the Intellectual Property Law world this month was the ruling that the owners of the rights to the song “Happy Birthday” could no longer collect royalties.  The judge found that they owned not the rights to the composition itself, but only to an underlying arrangement.  I recall hearing that Johnny Carson (Jay Leno’s predecessor for you kids – forget it if you don’t know Jay) said that the reason he grimaced every time a guest spontaneously sang the birthday song was that Johnny knew the royalties would  [...]

How to Pick a Brand Name

I’ve been getting rather cheeky lately.  I’ve even risked being a little obnoxious and occasionally offending clients.  You see, sometimes when I should quietly follow my clients’ orders for legal work, I’ve found myself interrupting, and giving them, well... advice. Last week I had lunch with a new client.  He has some great technology, and a strong foundation for a new business.  It was relaxed and informal, and he had along his lovely wife and their toddler, who managed to miss me entirely when he toppled a big glass of lemonade on the table. So, exactly  [...]