Property and Equity in Trademark Law

21 Pages Posted: 1 Jan 2020 Last revised: 1 Jul 2020

Date Written: December 12, 2019


This essay, delivered as the Nies Lecture at Marquette Law School, focuses on changes in the doctrinal structure of trademark law over the course of the last century — specifically with respect to the relationship between trademark law’s limits and the broader common law of unfair competition. Changes in that relationship, I will argue, meaningfully increased trademark law's emphasis on property — what the plaintiff owns — and deemphasized legal rules that focused on the defendant’s conduct.

Keywords: trademark, unfair competition, property, equity, scope, intellectual property

Suggested Citation

McKenna, Mark P., Property and Equity in Trademark Law (December 12, 2019). Marquette Intellectual Property Law Review, Forthcoming, Notre Dame Legal Studies Paper No. 191212, Available at SSRN:

Mark P. McKenna (Contact Author)

UCLA School of Law ( email )

385 Charles E Young Dr E
Los Angeles, CA 90095
United States

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