After weeks of king cakes, beads, and parades, Lent has arrived. Unfortunately, this means that the Mardi Gras festivities have come to a close. However, the lawsuit filed between two local New Orleans businesses in the weeks leading up to Fat Tuesday is just getting started. For many, beer is an essential part of the celebration, and the two Bourbon Street businesses have entered a legal battle involving trademarks over the beverage. “Huge Ass Beers” has filed suit against its competitor, “Giant Ass Beer,” claiming an alleged trademark violation by using the term giant, a synonym for their trademarked word— huge.
On June 15, 2015, the Open Register of Patent Ownership, known as ORoPO was launched. ORoPO is a non-profit organization that operates a free, open global database of verified patent ownership information. This type of information is maintained by patent offices around the world, including the USPTO, but unfortunately, the information available is often inaccurate or incomplete. ORoPO aims to change that and consolidate verified ownership information all in one place. Right now the database is very new and also voluntary, but some major patent holders are among the initial participants, including IBM and Microsoft.