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Rating:Nobody Puts TD Ameritrade In an Advertising Corner Not Rated 0.0 Email Routing List Email & Route  Print Print
Friday, March 18, 2016

Nobody Puts TD Ameritrade In an Advertising Corner

News summary by MFWire's editors

It's not every day that a big financial services company and a Hollywood studio are duking it out in court. Yet that's what is happening to TD Ameritrade right now, and the online brokerage giant and RIA custodian just won a key victory in that battle.

Judge Dean Pregerson

Senior Judge of the United States District Court for the Central District of California
Eriq Gardner of the Hollywood Reporter reports that on Monday in California, U.S. District Court Judge Dean Pregerson threw out trademark claims in Lionsgate's lawsuit against TD Ameritrade. Though Lionsgate can still try to get TD Ameritrade on copyright infringement allegations, the publication notes that that's "not without its challenges" as TD Ameritrade can call the advertisement in question in the suit "a protected parody," which would fall under fair use of copyright material.

The case revolves around a TD Ameritrade ad that parodies the 1987 movie Dirty Dancing in trying to win 401(k) rollovers. The ad is a cartoon that shows a man picking up a big, piggy bank in the style of the iconic Jennifer Grey-Patrick Swayze dance move from the movie. That visual is accompanied by on-screen text and voiceover that says "Nobody puts your old 401(k) in the corner," which Lionsgate sees as too similar to the iconic "Nobody puts Baby in a corner" line from Dirty Dancing.

Per the Hollywood Reporter, this victory for TD Ameritrade draws on a Supreme Court decision by the late Justice Antonin Scalia, a ruling that contrasts the line in trademark lawsuits from that in copyright infringement cases. Fundsters interested in the details of this intellectual property case should read the full article. 

Edited by: Neil Anderson, Managing Editor

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