Sticks and stones may break bones, but defamatory words on the internet can break a brand. However, as internet tools become more sophisticated, businesses are more equipped to fight back and prove defamatory statements. In an article for The Intellectual Property Strategist, “Defamation Investigations: A Big Leap in Fighting Back,” Founding Principal Doug Bania explained what businesses facing online defamation should know when considering legal action.
Doug detailed various internet tools that can be used to valuate the actual impact defamation has on their business. “An effective online investigation is crucial to establishing a causal connection between the disparaging statements and financial harm, quantifying harm, and ultimately proving damages in court,” Doug wrote. He also explained that the economic impact of online defamation is typically measured in one or more ways: lost profits, corrective advertising and/or decrease in the value of the brand. Gathering data via online analytic tools and traditional damages analyses, can provide insights to support a damages conclusion and provide business owners new weapons in the battle to defend their brand value.
Read the full The Intellectual Property Strategist article here.
Online reviews have impacted businesses for a long time, but despite the potential virality in today’s landscape, businesses have more ability than ever to understand the actual impact reviews have and to prove damages. In an article for LegalTech News, “Proving Online Defamation: No Longer a Black Box,” Founding Principal Doug Bania outlined the current landscape, how to manage defamation as it happens and accurately calculate the harm when online defamation warrants litigation.
Doug explains that negative reviews don’t automatically mean negative economic impact and using Google’s Advanced Search tool, you can get a full picture of how viral the negative reviews are. “Impact doesn’t always mean harm, but Google Trends can help evaluate whether observed declines in revenue or rescinded business opportunities can be linked to the online disparagement by comparing changes in search volume related to the defamatory statement to keywords associated with the affected brand,” wrote Doug.
Read the full LegalTech News article here.
Cross-over business models are the way forward. Think Amazon, which is an e-commerce, tech, retail and services company all in one. The success of cross-over business models relies on proprietary assets – both tangible and intangible – but the question is: how do you value this? World Trademark Review turned to Founding Principal Brian Buss to discuss what valuation involves, what businesses should do with that information and the impact valuating your business can have.
Buss explains that valuing a brand can include trademarks, websites, social media accounts – the list goes on. “The challenge for valuing brand assets is that you can’t focus on the brand and ignore all the other proprietary assets of the company,” said Buss. For example, it takes technology and brand assets working together for an online business to be successful.
“The conversation that follows from the valuation result is probably as important as the actual dollar amount of the results,” Buss added. “The purpose is not necessarily to get the dollar-amount result, but to give people a snapshot of where the company’s at, what makes it work at that point in time and the relative contribution of different assets. That snapshot helps to create conversations that lead to strategic decisions.”
Buss explains that valuation is also based on future projections, which are inherently uncertain. In addition, you need input from legal and in-house counsel, information from marketing, the product and R&D teams and finance. “If done well, it would be a communication from all those different functions within the company to say how they’re working together to create assets that will drive the future success of the company,” Buss commented.
Read the full article here (subscription required).
Founding Principals Brian Buss and Doug Bania are each hosting Table Topics at the 2021 International Trademark Association (INTA) Annual Meeting, the world’s premier intellectual property conference.
Doug’s discussion “Can Trademark Infringement Be a Victimless Crime? Why Some Defendants Should Pay $0 Damages Even if They are Liable for Trademark Infringement,” will explore situations where infringement may not equate to financial responsibility, and how to navigate these issues using different methods and tools. The Table Topic is on November 15 at 12 PM Pacific Time. Doug also serves on the Right of Publicity Committee for INTA.
As moderator of “Impact of ISO Standards on Brand Valuation and Evaluation,” Brian will lead a discussion on the standards published by the International Standards Organization and the implication of these standards for IP practitioners. Brian’s Table Topic is on November 16 at 10:30 AM Pacific Time. Brian serves on the Commercialization of Brands Committee for INTA.
The 2021 INTA Annual Meeting strives to be the leading conference of IP leaders worldwide, creating a space for innovation and networking. Table Topics provide an opportunity for global attendees to meet in a small group setting to discuss a pre-selected topic related to brands and IP law and practice. Table Topics are moderated one-hour virtual sessions with no more than 15 to 20 participants and relate the conference’s educational tracks.
Learn more here.
At the Licensing Executives Society (LES) 2021 Annual Meeting, “Reimagining the Future,” Founding Principals Brian Buss and Doug Bania are presenting on current innovation in the intellectual property space.
Brian’s panel “Brand Management & Valuation in Technology Companies” will discuss
the various ways brand and trademark assets bring value to an organization, and how brands can be valued to support monetization activities.
Doug’s panel “Tools of the Trade: Trends and Developments in IP Valuation and Dealmaking Data and Internet Tools” will give an insider’s look at the tools IP professionals can use to create data-driven analysis for decision-making, and how to utilize these tools.
The LES Annual Meeting is the premier event for the intellectual capital community, bringing together over 500 prominent decision-makers and thought leaders from all corners of the IP space to evolve the future of intellectual capital. Learn more about the meeting on September 27, 2021 here.
Brian Buss and Doug Bania were published in the May / June 2021 issue of The Value Examiner – A Professional Development Journal for the Consulting Disciplines. The article walks the reader through brand valuation using the apportionment process which determines what the portion of financial performance derived from use of brands, with an emphasis on drivers of product demand, product marketing, comparable offerings, financial performance, and the contribution of other assets. You can read the entire article by clicking the link: Valuing Brands in the Tech Sector Using an Apportionment Framework.