In Forbes today, intellectual property (IP) attorney Howard Hogan highlights the importance of IP to…
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Intellectual Property: Trump Administration Can Reverse Eight Years of Erosion Under Obama

In Forbes today, intellectual property (IP) attorney Howard Hogan highlights the importance of IP to the American economy (38% of GDP and 30% of jobs) and considers the opportunity for positive change under a Trump Administration after eight years of poor leadership under Barack Obama.

Hogan highlights the pernicious influence of Google during the past eight years, given its self-interest in weakening America's historic protection of IP rights and free-riding off of others' creations:

Arguably, no company has been more influential than Google in setting policy in America in recent years...  White House officials met with employees of Google or related companies 427 times - an average of more than once a week, while approximately 30 Google personnel have taken positions in the…[more]

January 23, 2017 • 03:43 pm

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Jester's CourtroomLegal tales stranger than stranger than fiction: Ridiculous and sometimes funny lawsuits plaguing our courts.
Jester’s Courtroom
A Race to the Courthouse
Wednesday, January 18 2017

A Tennessee family is suing a mall management group and owner, alleging that they suffered injuries during a human stampede on what they claim to be the busiest shopping day of the year, December 26, 2016.

According to news reports and the plaintiffs' legal filing, Teriance, Carol and TeCara Copeland were shopping at Hamilton Place Mall in Chattanooga, Tennessee, when a group of individuals set off fireworks in the food court area, allegedly causing "panic and a human stampede" that resulted in injuries to the plaintiffs.

"The Defendants were under an obligation to provide adequate security to prevent the human stampede from occurring," the lawsuit states.

The Copelands are seeking $150,000 in damages and charge that the mall should have had procedures in place to prevent a stampede.


A Raisin in the Court
Thursday, January 12 2017

A California woman is suing Raisinets-maker Nestlé SA for allegedly under-filling its boxes of candy.

According to the lawsuit, Sandy Hafer purchased a box of Raisinets in an opaque movie-theater-style container and, after opening the box, discovered it was only 60% full. Hafer claims Nestlé engaged in "deceptive packaging" and that she would not have purchased the candy if she had known the box was not full of chocolate-coated raisins.

The lawsuit seeks at least $5 million in damages to refund (plus interest) every California moviegoer who purchased a box containing "slack fill" - the government's term for empty space in a container. The lawsuit says the 40% of space in Nestlé’s boxes of Raisinets that is empty is “non-functional,” since the candy isn’t “susceptible to cracking, breaking or crumbling like potato chips in a bag would be.”

“All Nestlé products and labels comply with FDA regulations and provide consumers the information they need to make informed purchasing decisions,” a Nestlé spokeswoman said.


Do You Want Fries With That Lawsuit?
Wednesday, January 04 2017

An Illinois man is suing fast-food giant McDonald's and a local franchisee, claiming false advertising after his Extra Value Meal cost him more than if he had purchased the items à la carte.

Illinois bus driver James Gertie filed the lawsuit seeking class action status after he realized he paid 41 cents more for his $5.90 Extra Value Meal than he would have if he had purchased two cheeseburgers, fries and a drink separately.

"The reason that I am doing this is not about the 41 cents," Gertie told news sources. "It's because of the principle."

In his lawsuit, Gertie argues that McDonald's should not be able to get away with blatant false advertising, with the lawsuit stating the meal deal is clearly "no ‘value’ at all, let alone an ‘extra value.'" Gertie is seeking reimbursement for all customers "overcharged" for the two-cheeseburger Extra Value Meal.


Popular Mexican Food Chain Wrapped Up in Lawsuit
Wednesday, December 28 2016

Three California customers are suing restaurant chain Chipotle Mexican Grill, alleging the restaurant misrepresented the calorie count in its new burrito.

According to news reports, the potential plaintiffs will seek class-action status on the grounds that Chipotle advertised the new chorizo burrito as having 300 calories when, in fact, it adds up to about 1,050 calories. One of the customers said he "felt excessively full" after consuming the burrito and was misled by the calorie count. Chipotle took to social media to apologize for the confusing sign, saying "...we'll make things more clear next time. The 300 calories is for the chorizo."

The plaintiffs argue that customers are entitled to accurate information regarding the nutritional value of food and that this situation represents Chipotle's larger trend of misleading information, thus warranting that the lawsuit cover everyone who ate at Chipotle over the last four years and not just since the chorizo burrito was introduced in October.


Home Invaded by ... Christmas Music
Monday, December 19 2016

A New York lawyer is suing his neighbor, hoping to get an injunction forcing her to turn off her nonstop holiday music that blasts out of a loudspeaker in her Christmas display.

Nick Wilder, who's representing himself in the case, is suing socialite Lisa Maria Falcone, wife to hedge-fund billionaire Philip Falcone. Wilder lives in an apartment across the street from Falcone's three adjoining townhouses on East 67th Street.

“It’s not like she plays it a half-hour every day. It’s on from 7 a.m. to midnight," said Wilder. "I like a Christmas song on Christmas Day. But I’m tired of hearing ‘Jingle Bells’ like 700 or 800 times a day.’’

Wilder is asking Falcone to “show some Christmas spirit by being considerate and stop annoying the entire neighborhood.”

According to news reports, Falcone did not respond to media requests for comment.


Question of the Week   
Which one of the following was simultaneously a member of the House of Representatives, a U.S. Senator-elect and U.S. President-elect?
More Questions
Quote of the Day   
"To this day, most of the professional scoffers still write off Trump's stunning upset as the revenge of an angry white working class stewing in hate. Journalists who bother to sojourn to red-state hinterlands approach his supporters as if they are visiting the zoo. Trump knew his audience from the start. Just as his genius for selling his brand made him rich, his genius for reading the electorate…[more]
—Michael Goodwin, New York Post
— Michael Goodwin, New York Post
Liberty Poll   

If ObamaCare repeal and replacement begin immediately, but take 2 to 3 years to fully implement, will you consider the promises of President Trump and the Republican Congress to be met?