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10-cv-00990

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Case Summary: Slep-Tone Entertainment Corporation v. Karaoke Kandy Store, Inc., 10-cv-00990 (N.D. Ohio)

Plaintiff Slep-Tone Entertainment Corp. brought this action against Defendants Karaoke Kandy Store and its owner, Charles Polidori, alleging trademark infringement and unfair business practices under the Lanham Act and Ohio state law.

Slep-Tone owns the “Sound Choice” trademark and an accompanying display mark. Slep-Tone encodes these marks onto karaoke discs which it sells under the trade name Sound Choice. When played in a karaoke machine, these discs display the Sound Choice marks on the screen. According to Slep-Tone, Defendants copied Slep-Tone’s discs, without permission, onto hard drives and MP3 players which then were sold to customers who use these devices for karaoke. When customers see the Sound Choice marks on the screen, Slep-Tone alleged, they believe the Sound Choice brand is somehow aligned with Defendants.

When Defendants moved for summary judgment, Slep-Tone produced three affidavits. Two of the affidavits, made by former employees of Karaoke Kandy Store, declared that Defendants copied the contents of Slep-Tone CDs onto hard drives which they sold to customers. The district court nonetheless granted summary judgment. This decision was reversed on appeal by the Sixth Circuit, which found that a reasonable jury could infer, based upon the affidavits, that Defendants committed unauthorized actions with respect to Slep-Tone’s marks.

On remand, the district court held a jury trial to decide whether Defendants infringed on Slep-Tone’s trademarks. This video shows the four-day trial, after which the jury found that Slep-Tone had not proven that Defendants’ actions had violated its trademarks. The court therefore entered judgment in favor of Defendants.

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Case Highlights

  • Complaint filed 5/03/2010 (Doc #1)
  • Motion for Summary Judgment filed by Defendants 8/08/2011 (Doc #39)
  • Summary Judgment granted 10/26/2011 (Doc #76)
  • Decision reversed on appeal and remanded 3/07/2013 (Doc #87)
  • Jury trial held 8/19-8/22/2013 (Doc #105-108)
  • Judgment entered in favor of Defendants 8/23/2013 (Doc #110)

 

Case-related documents, including those referenced above, are available via the Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) service. For more information, visit Pacer.gov.