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Internet Trademark Case Summaries

Mattel, Inc. v. McBride

48 U.S.P.Q.2d 1467 (S.D.N.Y. 1998)

Defendant used the name “Barbie’s Playhouse” on its adult entertainment website located at “www.jcomlive.com/barbie.htm.”  Defendant’s site featured pink coloring and a font identical to the coloring and font used by plaintiff in connection with its sale of BARBIE dolls.  Plaintiff, owner of registered trademark BARBIE for dolls, sued for trademark dilution.  The court held that defendant’s use of “Barbie’s Playhouse” tarnished plaintiff’s famous BARBIE mark by creating an association with unwholesome services, and entered a permanent injunction restraining defendant “from diluting the BARBIE trademarks.”  Finding that defendant intended to trade on the goodwill of plaintiff’s trademark, the court awarded plaintiff damages under 15 U.S.C. § 1117(a) in the amount of defendant’s gross profits from operating its website or $7,300.  After trial, the parties agreed to an award of fees and costs of $7,700 on plaintiff’s dilution claim, for a total monetary judgment against defendant of $15,000.