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Comic-Con wins suit over intellectual property violation

Many companies, events and shows are often known by words or phrases that are easily recognizable to consumers and patrons. As a result, many businesses look to copyright and trademark their names, slogans and logos to reduce the potential for confusion or infringement from other companies that might want to piggyback off another company's successes. Because this intellectual property is immensely important, businesses may end up filing lawsuits if infringement does occur.

Texas residents, especially those interested in attending conventions, may be interested in a recent ruling involving Comic-Con. The out-of-state comic convention that hosts numerous celebrities and fans alike is often easily recognized because of the name. However, other conventions that cater to similar audiences have attempted to use the phrase "comic con" in the titles of their convention events.

In particular, the representatives for the large convention filed suit against a smaller convention that used "comic con" in its name and a logo similar to the larger convention. In December of last year, a federal judge ruled that the smaller convention must change its name due to a trademark violation. A more recent ruling indicated that the founders of the smaller convention must pay $3.9 million in legal fees to representatives of the well-known event due to using litigation tactics that were wasteful.

Intellectual property, like trademarks and copyrights, can play a major role in making a company recognizable as well as giving it a leg-up on competition. If Texas company owners believe that other businesses or individuals have violated their IP, they may wish to find out more information on their legal options. Filing legal claims may be necessary in order to fully protect companies' best interests.

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