Recent Trademark Dilution Cases Redefine Concept of “Fame”, pp. 173-177

Steve McKelvey

Trademark dilution has been described by one legal commentator as “probably the single most muddled concept in all of trademark doctrine” (Beebe, 2006, p. 1144). Two recent sport-related decisions have, however, served to illuminate the application of the doctrine to sport-related trademarks through interpretation of the 2006 amendments to the Federal Trademark Dilution Act of 1995 (“FTDA”). Both decisions provide guidance to sport-related brands and sport teams, and particularly colleges and universities, that seek to bring dilution claims (typically brought in conjunction with trademark infringement and unfair competition claims).