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Foreign Words and Personal Names as Trademarks

This lesson explores how trademark law deals with two specific categories of marks: foreign (non-English) words and people's names. It addresses their ability to function as marks as well as how they should be assessed when determining infringement. The lesson assumes a working familiarity with the "distinctiveness" requirement, the fair use doctrine, and the likelihood of confusion test for infringement. The lesson can be used to (1) provide an overview of one or both of these specialized areas of trademark law or (2) as a means to confirm understanding of the core principles after a class on the subject.

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