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Lamebook Update: Parody Site Can Keep Name but Must Add Disclaimer

Back in November 2010, I wrote here about "Lamebook," a parody website that "highlights the funny, absurd, and often 'lame' content that gets posted on the Facebook website." As a review of the Lamebook site shows confirms, there is plenty of absurd and sometimes amusing Facebook material being captured there (and also at sites such as Failbook).

Facebook was not as amused as others by Lamebook, claiming in a strongly worded letter to Lamebook that "Lamebook’s use of the LAMEBOOK mark infringes Facebook's well-established trademark rights in the FACEBOOK mark. ..." Lamebook went on the offensive, filing a preemptive lawsuit in federal court in Austin, Texas that sought a declaratory judgment "of non-infringement and non-dilution [of Facebook's trademarks] and a declaration that the First Amendment protects the Lamebook mark." Four days later, of course, Facebook struck back by filing its own trademark infringement case, and the Facebook-Lamebook battle was on.

The Recorder now reports that a settlement has been reached in the case which allows Lamebook to keep its name. Under the settlement, Lamebook agreed to add a disclaimer to its website and further agreed not to seek trademark protection for its name. "The parties are now satisfied that users are not likely to be confused," the companies said in a joint statement on Thursday.

Final Score of Lamebook v. Facebook:

Lamebook Users: 1 (nobody was confused before, nobody is confused now; 1 point for not needing to find Lamebook at a different URL)
Facebook: 0 (this whole dispute was lame and not worth the effort)
Lamebook: 2 (1 point for keeping name, 1 point for keeping URL) 
Lawyers on both sides who got paid to litigate this "dispute": 10 ($$$)

Posted by Bruce Carton on August 29, 2011 at 12:00 PM | Permalink | Comments (3)

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