Generic Fair Use

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Tag: customer confusion

Space Force v. “Space Force” – a trademark kerfuffle

On May 29, 2020, Netflix released a new comedy television series starring Steve Carrell titled “Space Force.” It is a workplace comedy from one of the creators of “The Office” that focuses on the presumed sixth branch of the United States military. This concept is directly derived from the United States’ Space Force that was announced by President Trump and authorized by Congress on December 20, 2019.

By any standard, the existence of both things is somewhat of a farce. Making things even stranger is that no one seems to understand how names and titles and trademarks work, which led to a series of articles this week about the purported trademark rights to SPACE FORCE being lost by the United States government. This premise is ridiculous and this article will attempt to explain why this is a non-story.

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Bait and Switch Advertising in 2020: Is Grubhub violating the Lanham Act?

Even in the midst of a pandemic and an unofficial national lockdown, people still have to eat. With outings to the local restaurant and trips to the grocery store being potentially risky, food delivery services have become an essential part of American life in 2020. For large-scale service providers like Grubhub, it has been a relative goldmine for business.

But is Grubhub scamming us all? On May 15, 2020, BuzzFeed reported that even if you seek to bypass Grubhub service fees by calling restaurants directly, you may have been fooled by a bait-and-switch phone number. These restaurants are still paying Grubhub for extra fees.

How is this legal? More specifically, is this a violation of the Lanham Act for false advertising or customer confusion and deception?

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