Columns

In the Public Eye

Duke Ratliff

Remember the ’80s song “Somebody’s Watching Me?” The lyrics for the Michael Jackson-like ditty went: “I always feel like somebody’s watching me.” Well, I nominate that almost-forgotten tune to be the song of summer 2013 for decision makers of all shapes and sizes. If recent events are any indication, if it feels like somebody isMore »

Last updated: September 10, 2013

The Federal Government’s Increasing Role in Trade Secret Theft

Kristi A. Davidson

Last month’s article launched us into the world of employment law by discussing a few of the human-resources implications that may flow from the United States Supreme Court’s twin decisions in Hollingsworth v. Perry and United States v. Windsor. This month, let’s shift our focus to the executive and legislative branches to talk about theMore »

Last updated: September 9, 2013

Summertime 2013, Livin’s Easy

Duke_Ratliff

Has there ever been a better time to be in the home furnishings business? Well, after ignoring the sluggish sales, price-crushing competition and penny-pinching consumers… Let me rephrase that: Has there ever been a better time to be in the home furnishings business, uh, potentially? Although the bottom line for vendors and retailers may notMore »

Last updated: August 12, 2013

The Aftermath of DOMA: Sales Boon, HR Burden?

Kristi A. Davidson

The day before I sat down to write this month’s column, the U.S. Supreme Court announced two highly anticipated and hotly debated decisions: Hollingsworth v. Perry and United States v. Windsor. In Hollingsworth, the Supreme Court declined to decide whether to reverse the California courts’ rulings that Proposition 8 is unconstitutional because its proponents lackedMore »

Last updated: August 12, 2013

JCP, RB, NYC

Duke_Ratliff

There were two notable home store openings in New York last month, offering an exercise in comparison and contrast for the home business. J.C. Penney finally opened its much-discussed new home shop in Manhattan, featuring exclusive shops from Michael Graves, Bodum, Pantone, Jonathan Adler and Martha Stewart. (Terence Conran’s Design by Conran shop was notMore »

Last updated: October 24, 2013

Counterfeiting: Not a Victimless Crime

Kristi A. Davidson

Have you ever walked down the street and done a double-take because you’ve seen your product being sold under someone else’s name? This problem is not limited to street carts or the underground network lining Canal Street in New York City. We have assisted clients stunned by “reputable” companies copying their design and distributing knock-offsMore »

Last updated: October 24, 2013

The Beginning of a Beautiful Relationship?

The Beginning of a Beautiful Relationship?

Over the last couple of months, these columns have addressed the dos and don’ts of celebrity endorsements.  But what about the celebrity who doesn’t want just to endorse your brand but to create new products under the celebrity’s own brand?  While the financial details of the arrangement may be forefront on your mind, many otherMore »

Last updated: August 12, 2013

Ullman’s Revenge

Duke_Ratliff

The J.C. Penney watch continued last month as the retailer reported a huge loss—$348 million—for its first quarter. The nation’s most closely critiqued retail chain performed even worse than had been expected, reporting a 16 percent drop in sales compared to last year to continue its long decline in sales. Last week, the chain securedMore »

Last updated: October 24, 2013