Aerial Photo of Wrigley Field showing building rooftops in the distance.
(Photo Credit: Aerial Views)
- the circle CUBS logo;
- The name WRIGLEY FIELD (Note: this particular application for federal registration was abandoned -- apparently facing a likelihood of confusion rejection over the many WRIGLEY related trademarks held by the William Wrigley Jr. Company);
- the Wrigley Field marquee logo.
This lawsuit, however, is slightly different than the one that the Cubs previously filed. In this case, the Cubs had filed lawsuits against T. Lamb (along with other rooftop owners) in 2003 resulting in a settlement agreement whereby T. Lamb was permitted to charge admission on the day of any Cubs home games in return for paying a fee to the Cubs. T. Lamb paid the fees due to the Cubs under the settlement agreement for the 2004 through 2007 seasons. Then, in early 2009, T. Lamb apparently notified the Cubs that it would not pay the fee for the 2008 season. Based on this breach, the Cubs terminated the settlement agreement.
In addition to this breach of contract, the complaint alleges that T. Lamb is still improperly using the Cubs’ trademarks in promoting its rooftop club despite a cease and desist notification from the Cubs. [Ed – click here to view the club’s own brochure and decide for yourself if T. Lamb is using the Cubs’ trademarks in any sense that is other than fair.] The complaint specifically focuses on the fact that when an individual visits the Lakeview Baseball Club website, the title of the website’s home page reads “Lakeview Baseball Club (Chicago Cubs© Wrigley Field© Rooftop).” [Ed – do you think they meant to use the © copyright symbol instead of the ® symbol for a registered tradmark?] The Cubs’ trademarks also appear in other parts of T. Lamb’s website [ed. – although arguably in fair use sense: e.g., “Whether you just want to catch a Chicago Cubs game at Wrigley Field” “rooftop entertaining, including employee and client parties overlooking Wrigley Field©.” In the past we've hosted Cubs© themed wedding receptions]. The complaint also alleges that the website claims that the club is “endorsed by the Chicago Clubs” (although I was unable to find such language on the website in conducting my own quick search).
The Cubs are asking for injunctive relief to stop T. Lamb from using the Cubs’ trademarks and engaging in any marketing which is likely to cause consumer confusion regarding affiliation with or sponsorship or approval by the Cubs of T. Lamb’s business. The Cubs also seek compensatory damages, T. Lamb’s profits, treble damages, statutory damages under 15 U.S.C. § 1117(c) (for alleged counterfeiting), interest, costs and attorneys’ fees.
It is not yet apparent whether the Cubs, as they did in the prior lawsuit, will threaten to obstruct this particular rooftop view of Wrigley Field enjoyed by T. Lamb’s club.