Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Patsy's Italian Restaurant: The most complicated trademark litigation in history?

Patsy's Italian Restaurant, Inc. v. Banas, No. 08-4487 (2d Cir. Aug. 24, 2011).

There is no way I can boil this decision down to two paragraphs.  Or even five.  Nor can I find even one significant legal lesson from it.  It's a really factually-complicated, fact-driven decision.  Read it at your own risk.

Three thoughts occur to me after trying to read it:  (1) how is it that restaurants, more than any other type of business, seems to get into these unbelievably messy fractured ownership disputes?; (2) this is yet another case that leaves me jealously wondering how to get clients this litigious!; and (3) why are these people fighting over New York pizza trademarks, anyway?  Far better (indeed, the best) pizza comes from New Haven -- where it is spelled "apizza" and pronounced "ah-beetz."   New York pizza isn't even worth a cease-and-desist letter. 

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