Tom Cotter
Associate Dean for Research & Planning
Taft Stettinius & Hollister Professor of Law

Prof. Tom Cotter Quoted by Minnesota Lawyer on Lizzo Trademark Battle

Professor Tom Cotter was quoted by the Minnesota Lawyer in an article covering pop star Lizzo's recent successful trademarking of her catch phrase from her song "Truth Hurts". The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office reversed its decision based on Lizzo wide accreditation with popularizing the phrase. Professor Cotter shared, “There is always some risk that people will be deterred from engaging in lawful uses of words or other symbols out of fear that they might be infringing someone’s rights, and therefore inviting a potential lawsuit. Trademarks and other forms of IP are somewhat blurry at the margins—in other words, unlike tangible property, it’s often unclear exactly how far the rights in these intangibles extends.”