Mid-May 2022 Indiana Intellectual Property Litigation Update

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No new trademark or copyright lawsuits were filed in Indiana in the last 30 days. Several lawsuits were dismissed. All in all, a quiet month and we’ll look forward to more activity as we move into the summer.

Noble Roman’s, Inc. v. Gateway Triangle Corp. et al. (SD, filed 2/5/2021) – No update this month.

Egglife Foods, Inc. v. Crepini, LLC (ND, filed 5/28/2021) – The parties have jointly stipulated to extend the deadlines in their Scheduling Order.

Sears Authorized Hometown Stores, LLC v. Lynn Retail, Inc. et al. (SD, filed 6/4/2021) – On May 16, 2022, the parties filed a joint motion to extend discovery deadlines.

Noble Roman’s, Inc. v. AMI Stores Management, Inc. et al. (SD, filed 6/6/2021) – On May 12, 2022, Noble Roman’s filed a Statement of Claims and Defenses.

Phoenix Intangibles Holding Company et al. v. Virk Brothers, LLC et al. (ND, filed 7/9/2021) – The lawsuit was dismissed on May 3, 2022.

Poulsen Roser A/S v. Gardens Alive, Inc. et al. (SD, filed 7/14/2021) – The lawsuit was dismissed on April 15, 2022.

AWGI, LLC et al. v. CLD Trucking Co. d/b/a Atlas Moving Systems AMS (SD, filed 7/22/2021) – A Motion for Attorney’s Fees was filed.

RE/MAX, LLC et al. v. Dulin et al. (SD, filed 8/24/2021) – The parties have extended discovery deadlines.

Forest River, Inc. v. inTech Trailers, Inc. (ND, filed 8/31/2021) – A Stipulated Protective Order was granted on April 19, 2022.

Thomas v. ooShirts, Inc. et al. (SD, filed 9/24/2021) – No update this month. 

Edutainment Live, LLC v. Video Game Palooza et al. (SD, filed 10/11/2021) – A Settlement Conference is scheduled for June 30, 2022.

Innovative Sports Management Inc. v. La Jalisco LLP (SD, filed 12/15/2021) – On May 12, 2022, the Plaintiff filed a Motion for Entry of Default.

Corson v. Vive Exterior Design, LLC et al. (SD, filed 1/17/2022) – The lawsuit was dismissed on April 12, 2022.

Gabet et al. v. Amazon.com. Inc. et al. (ND, filed 1/20/2022) – The Plaintiff filed an Amended Complaint on April 25, 2022. Amazon filed a new Motion to Dismiss on April 29, 2022.

Reid v. Stephenson (SD, filed 1/27/2022) – No update this month.

Autoniq, LLC v. Laser Appraiser, LLC (SD, filed 2/21/2022) – No update this month.

Microsoft Corporation v. Solution Hat, LLC d/b/a Think Global et al. (SD, filed 2/25/2022) – A Pretrial Conference was held on May 9, 2022, with future dates set for 2023.

The American Automobile Association, Inc. v. All American Auto Hail Dent Repair LLC d/b/a AAA Hail Repair et al. (SD, filed 3/23/2022) – Steven D. Groth has entered an appearance on behalf of the Defendants.

NuStar Enterprises LLC v. Reloaded Merch LLC et al. (ND, filed 4/1/2022) – A Pretrial Conference is scheduled for June 23, 2022. Robert R. Axenfeld has entered an appearance on behalf of the Defendants.

Mapes v. Top Tier Marketers LLC d/b/a Artfily et al. (SD, filed 4/4/2022) – The Plaintiff filed a Motion for Default Judgment on May 9, 2022.

Broadcast Music, Inc. et al. v. Warehouse L.L.C. d/b/a The Verve et al. (SD, filed 4/6/2022) – The Defendants filed an Answer on April 18, 2022.

April 2022 Updates

March 2022 Updates

February 2022 Updates

January 2022 Updates

December 2021 Updates

Omi in a Hellcat Threatens $30 Million Counterclaim in YouTube Response to Trademark Infringement Lawsuit

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Ordinarily it’s not wise for a client to speak publicly about their ongoing legal proceedings. But when the client is a YouTube celebrity, I guess it’s expected that there will be some type of video response. Omi in a Hellcat, the defendant in a recently-filed Indiana trademark infringement lawsuit involving his Reloaded Merch brand, has posted an explosive video response on YouTube promising a full legal defense along with a $30 million counterclaim.

Presumably the Defendant has received counsel from attorneys, but you’d be hard pressed to figure out what he was told from his video comments. Starting off by accusing the Plaintiff of trying to steal his hard work, the Defendant then indicates that he intends to litigate and file a petition to cancel against the Plaintiff’s RELOADED trademark registration.

The Defendant claims to have evidence of garments created prior to the Plaintiff’s date of first use. If those garments were created under the Reloaded brand (he does not specify in the video) and sold in interstate commerce (again, not specified), that could be useful for proving priority. Actual court filings by the Defendant’s counsel may give us that information.

With no indication that the Defendant will relinquish his Reloaded Merch brand, I’d expect this litigation to be stayed pending the resolution of the TTAB cancellation proceeding, should that be filed today as mentioned in the video. We’ll post the relevant TTAB documents once filed. Stay tuned for updates.

Mid-April 2022 Indiana Intellectual Property Litigation Update

Several new interesting lawsuits were filed since mid-March, so we’ll look forward to watching those develop over the next few months. In existing lawsuits, RE/MAX and Amazon have filed Motions to Dismiss, while Think Global have filed their Answer to Microsoft’s allegations of running a phony tech support scheme. The Amazon Brief is an interesting read considering the extensive litigation history between the parties.

What case are you watching most closely?

Noble Roman’s, Inc. v. Gateway Triangle Corp. et al. (SD, filed 2/5/2021) – No update this month.

Delta Faucet Company v. Iakovlev et al. (SD, filed 3/25/2021) – No update this month. 

Egglife Foods, Inc. v. Crepini, LLC (ND, filed 5/28/2021) – No update this month.

Sears Authorized Hometown Stores, LLC v. Lynn Retail, Inc. et al. (SD, filed 6/4/2021) – A Case Management Plan was approved on March 21, 2022. No other updates.

Noble Roman’s, Inc. v. AMI Stores Management, Inc. et al. (SD, filed 6/6/2021) – No update this month.

Phoenix Intangibles Holding Company et al. v. Virk Brothers, LLC et al. (ND, filed 7/9/2021) – The parties have been ordered to file dismissal papers by May 2, 2022.

Poulsen Roser A/S v. Gardens Alive, Inc. et al. (SD, filed 7/14/2021) – A Stipulation of Dismissal was filed on April 11, 2022.

AWGI, LLC et al. v. CLD Trucking Co. d/b/a Atlas Moving Systems AMS (SD, filed 7/22/2021) – No update this month. The Plaintiff is still seeking to enforce the default judgment from September 2021.

RE/MAX, LLC et al. v. Dulin et al. (SD, filed 8/24/2021) – On April 1, 2022, RE/MAX filed a Motion to Dismiss Defendants’ Counterclaims. The parties jointly extended discovery deadlines.

Forest River, Inc. v. inTech Trailers, Inc. (ND, filed 8/31/2021) – No update this month.

Thomas v. ooShirts, Inc. et al. (SD, filed 9/24/2021) – No update this month.

Edutainment Live, LLC v. Video Game Palooza et al. (SD, filed 10/11/2021) – The Defendants’ Preliminary Exhibit List was filed on March 25, 2022. No other updates.

Innovative Sports Management Inc. v. La Jalisco LLP (SD, filed 12/15/2021) – The Complaint was served on March 9, 2022. No other updates.

Corson v. Vive Exterior Design, LLC et al. (SD, filed 1/17/2022) – A Notice of Voluntary Dismissal was filed on April 12, 2022.

Gabet et al. v. Amazon.com. Inc. et al. (ND, filed 1/20/2022) – Amazon filed a Motion to Dismiss on April 4, 2022. The Brief in Support (below) highlights five reasons why the Complaint fails to state a claim. The Answer also informs in a footnote that this is the third lawsuit filed by Plaintiffs against Amazon and that Amazon will separately move to transfer venue to the Southern District of Indiana. The parties held a pretrial conference on April 12, 2022, whereby discovery has been stayed pending the ruling on the Motion to Dismiss.

Reid v. Stephenson (SD, filed 1/27/2022) – No update this month.

Autoniq, LLC v. Laser Appraiser, LLC (SD, filed 2/21/2022) – No update this month.

Microsoft Corporation v. Solution Hat, LLC d/b/a Think Global et al. (SD, filed 2/25/2022) – The Defendants filed an Answer (all general denials) on March 22, 2022. The Defendants’ counsel is Michele S. Katz of ADVITAM IP, LLC, via pro hac vice, with local counsel of Alice M. Morical and Christopher D. Wagner of Hoover Hull Turner LLP.

The American Automobile Association, Inc. v. All American Auto Hail Dent Repair LLC d/b/a AAA Hail Repair et al. (SD, filed 3/23/2022) – The Defendants were served with the Complaint on April 8, 2022.

NuStar Enterprises LLC v. Reloaded Merch LLC et al. (ND, filed 4/1/2022) – No update yet.

Mapes v. Top Tier Marketers LLC d/b/a Artfily et al. (SD, filed 4/4/2022) – No update yet.

Broadcast Music, Inc. et al. v. Warehouse L.L.C. d/b/a The Verve et al. (SD, filed 4/6/2022) – No update yet.

March 2022 Updates

February 2022 Updates

January 2022 Updates

December 2021 Updates

BMI sues Terre Haute Bar for Copyright Infringement

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It has been awhile since BMI last filed an infringement lawsuit in Indiana. Their target this time around is The Verve, a music club and cocktail bar in Terre Haute, Indiana.

BMI allegedly reached out to the Defendants over sixty (60) times since March 2018 in an attempt to sell her the required public performance license. Accordingly, BMI now brings a lawsuit with 6 claims of copyright infringement based on the following playlist being performed at The Verve without a license on April 29, 2019:

These BMI lawsuits never end well for the venue, so hopefully a federal lawsuit will finally get the Defendants’ attention and an appropriate license can be purchased to resolve the conflict.

Stay tuned for updates.

Broadcast Music, Inc. et al. v. Warehouse L.L.C. d/b/a The Verve et al.

Case Number: 2:22-cv-00136-JPH-DLP
File Date: Wednesday, April 6, 2022
Plaintiff: Broadcast Music, Inc.; Peermusic III Ltd.; Universal- Songs of Polygram International, Inc.; Songs of Universal, Inc.; EMI Consortium Songs, Inc. d/b/a EMI Longitude Music; Fourteenth Hour Music Inc.; Springtime Music, Inc.; EMI Blackwood Music, Inc.; Sony/ATV Songs LLC; Fall Out Boy Inc. d/b/a Chicago X Softcore Songs
Plaintiff Counsel: April A. Wimberg of Dentons Bingham Greenebaum
Defendant: Warehouse L.L.C. d/b/a The Verve, Connie Wrin
Cause: Copyright Infringement
Court: Southern District of Indiana
Judge: James Patrick Hanlon
Referred To: Doris L. Pryor

Complaint:

Florida Husband/Wife Marketing Team Sued in Indiana for Stealing Etsy Artwork and Selling it as their Own

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The Defendants, a Florida husband/wife marketing team, are accused of purchasing digital artwork from Plaintiff’s Etsy site and then selling it on their own website as their own work and intellectual property. The Plaintiff is an artist from Guilford, Indiana (home of the historic Guilford Covered Bridge). In addition to Plaintiff, the Defendants are alleged to have used artwork from numerous creators without authorization.

The Defendants’ own Terms of Use from their website are referenced in the Complaint (below) as evidence of their understanding (and thus willful violation) of copyright law. The Defendants are further alleged to have removed the metadata from the Plaintiff’s image files, which could support a claim of “Removal or Alteration of Copyright Management Information” although that wasn’t included in the initial Complaint. The Complaint also details unsuccessful attempted communications between Plaintiff’s counsel and the Defendants.

Damages for willful copyright infringement can be severe, up to $150,000 per infringement. If the Defendants are truly serial infringers as alleged, the Court could easily decide to grant the maximum damages award. The Defendants could also be required to pay Plaintiff’s costs and attorneys’ fees, likely a hefty amount in itself.

Stay tuned for updates.

Mapes v. Top Tier Marketers LLC d/b/a Artfily et al.

Case Number: 1:22-cv-00674-JMS-DLP
File Date: Monday, April 4, 2022
Plaintiff: Tara Mapes
Plaintiff Counsel: Michelle L. Casper, Rachael L. Rodman of Ulmer & Berne LLP
Defendant: Top Tier Marketers LLC d/b/a Artfily, Meagan Broadwater, Dean Broadwater
Cause: Copyright Infringement
Court: Southern District of Indiana
Judge: Jane Magnus-Stinson
Referred To: Doris L. Pryor

Complaint: