Author: Oliver Herzfeld

Oliver Herzfeld

Thelonious Monk And The Perils Of Oral Agreements

Original Article Source: Forbes.com An old quip that is widely misattributed to the famous movie producer Samuel Goldwyn states “a verbal contract isn’t worth the paper it’s written on.” The truth is, with only a few exceptions, oral agreements are legal, valid and binding. However, oral agreements present other difficulties and challenges apart from enforceability. A lawsuit recently commenced by the Estate of Thelonious

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Oliver Herzfeld

Who Owns Tom Clancy’s Fictional Character Jack Ryan?

This article originally appeared in Forbes.   Tom Clancy’s widow, Alexandra Clancy, recently commenced a lawsuit against the personal representative of her late husband’s estate, J. W. Thompson Webb, to determine the ownership of the author’s most famous fictional character, Jack Ryan. Clancy’s widow believes Jack Ryan is owned by Clancy’s estate and claims Webb has wrongfully entered into agreements that have surrendered

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Oliver Herzfeld

How to Establish a World-Class Corporate Brand Licensing Program: Part Three

This article originally appeared in Forbes. In the first installment of this three-part series (available here), I commenced a survey and analysis of the key processes and procedures in establishing a corporate brand licensing program by covering how to get started, strategic planning, and teams, processes and tools. In the second installment (available here), I covered licensee selection and negotiation, the license

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Oliver Herzfeld

How To Establish A World-Class Corporate Brand Licensing Program: Part Two

A well-functioning corporate licensing program can help a brand to expand into new categories and territories, adapting to new trends and a changing marketplace. However, setting up such a program takes hard work and ongoing care. In the first installment of this three-part series (available here), I commenced a survey and analysis of the key processes and procedures in establishing a

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Oliver Herzfeld

Legal Beef: Benihana In A Licensing Battle Over The ‘Beni Burger’

It all started with an unauthorized hamburger. Well, actually, it all started in 1964 when Hiroaki “Rocky” Aoki opened a chain of iconic Benihana restaurants. The restaurants feature teppanyaki cooking, a dinner entertainment style of cuisine where chefs theatrically prepare meals at an iron griddle located tableside. Sometime after Aoki’s death in 2008, his family sold Benihana Inc. (BI) to

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Oliver Herzfeld

Protecting Cannabis Brand Names

By Oliver Herzfeld and Jared Mermelstein “Marijuana’s classification as an illegal substance makes brand protection under trademark law problematic and uncertain. But it is not impossible for cannabis companies to protect their brands. It just takes some creative problem-solving!” This article originally appeared in Forbes. As a growing number of states permit activities specific to the possession, use, production and

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Oliver Herzfeld

How To Establish A World-Class Corporate Brand Licensing Program

This article originally appeared in Forbes.   Licensing programs are an important commercial tool for corporate brand owners, enabling them to derive significant rewards from granting third parties the right to use their trademarks. In addition to generating new revenue streams, licensors benefit from: strengthened relationships, reinforced brand values and additional touch-points with existing customers; extended brand awareness, reach and

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Oliver Herzfeld

Louis Vuitton v. My Other Bag: No License Required

This article originally appeared in Forbes. Using another’s trademark on your goods and services usually requires a license. However, there are exceptions to that general rule. For example, under certain circumstances, you are not required to obtain a license in connection with trademark uses for purposes of parody. The recent decision in case of Louis Vuitton v. My Other Bag

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Oliver Herzfeld

Tackling Unlicensed Uses Of Players’ Personas In Video Games

This article originally appeared in Forbes. Written by Oliver Herzfeld, Marc Melzer and Jared Mermelstein With the academic year and new NCAA football season well underway, and the Supreme Court’s decision whether to hear the appeal in O’Bannon v. NCAA expected in late September or early October, it is an ideal time for us to look at the challenging intellectual property questions

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Oliver Herzfeld

The Kardashians v. Haven Beauty: When Licensees Fail To Pay Royalties

This post originally appeared on Forbes.com From time to time, licensors have disputes with their licensees. That scenario is not unusual. The question is, in the midst of a dispute, can a licensee stop paying royalties while continuing to use a licensed trademark? A recent court decision in the dispute between the Kardashian sisters and Haven Beauty directly addresses this

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