Miss Universe, Inc. v. Flesher, No. CV 77-1276-AAH.

CourtUnited States District Courts. 9th Circuit. United States District Courts. 9th Circuit. Central District of California
Citation433 F. Supp. 271
Decision Date20 June 1977
Docket NumberNo. CV 77-1276-AAH.
PartiesMISS UNIVERSE, INC., a California Corporation, Plaintiff, v. William FLESHER, Fran Flesher, Mel Lynn, and Treehouse Fun Ranch, Inc., a California Corporation, Defendants.

433 F. Supp. 271

MISS UNIVERSE, INC., a California Corporation, Plaintiff,
v.
William FLESHER, Fran Flesher, Mel Lynn, and Treehouse Fun Ranch, Inc., a California Corporation, Defendants.

No. CV 77-1276-AAH.

United States District Court, C. D. California.

June 20, 1977.


Robert E. Hinerfeld and Wallace L. Rosvall, Murphy, Thornton, Hinerfeld & Cahill, Los Angeles, Cal., for plaintiff.

James W. Geriak and Thomas D. Kiley, Lyon & Lyon, Los Angeles, Cal., for defendants William Flesher, Fran Flesher, Melvin Lynn (sued herein as "Mel Lynn"), and Treehouse Fun Ranch, Inc., a California corporation.

FINDINGS OF FACT AND CONCLUSIONS OF LAW RE PRELIMINARY INJUNCTION

HAUK, District Judge.

This Court having considered the extensive declarations, affidavits, and memoranda of law filed by the parties, having considered the oral arguments of counsel, and being fully satisfied in the premises, now makes its Findings of Fact and Conclusions of Law, pursuant to Rule 52, F.R.Civ.P., and Local Rule 7, as follows:

FINDINGS OF FACT

1. Plaintiff is a California corporation, with its principal place of business in the City of New York, State of New York. Defendants William and Fran Flesher are

433 F. Supp. 272
husband and wife, officers of defendant Treehouse Fun Ranch, Inc., a California corporation hereinafter sometimes "Treehouse", and the responsible managing agents of Treehouse in charge of Treehouse's beauty pageants, variously known as MISS NUDE U.S.A. Beauty Pageant, MS. NUDE U.S.A. Beauty Pageant, and MISS NUDE INTERNATIONAL Beauty Pageant. Defendant Lynn is the director of defendant Treehouse's 1977 beauty pageants promoted under the names MISS NUDE U.S.A., MS. NUDE U.S.A., and MISS NUDE INTERNATIONAL. All of the defendants reside and do business within the Central District of California

2. Continuously since 1952, plaintiff has promoted an annual beauty pageant under the service mark MISS U.S.A. Beauty Pageant, from which the winner, known as MISS U.S.A. and MISS UNITED STATES, can enter another beauty pageant produced by plaintiff, known as the MISS UNIVERSE Beauty Pageant. The contestants in the MISS U.S.A. Beauty Pageant are drawn from each of the 50 States and the District of Columbia, with a representative unmarried female contestant coming from each jurisdiction to each annual MISS U.S.A. Beauty Pageant.

3. Plaintiff's MISS U.S.A. Beauty Pageant has been broadcast on the CBS Television Network annually since 1965, sponsored by Procter & Gamble Company. In the Spring of 1976, the pageant was seen by an estimated viewing audience exceeding 60,000,000 people. The annual MISS UNIVERSE Beauty Pageant, in which MISS U.S.A. participates as a contestant, involves female contestants representing many nations. The international pageant is televised annually by Atlantic and Pacific satellite to an estimated viewing audience of 500,000,000 people in more than 40 countries. The total annual sponsor cost of the MISS U.S.A. and the MISS UNIVERSE Beauty Pageants exceeds $2,000,000.

4. The beauty queens selected in plaintiff's annual pageants are judged upon qualities such as congeniality, beauty, intelligence, and background.

5. It is the policy and practice of plaintiff to conduct its MISS U.S.A. and MISS UNIVERSE Beauty Pageants in good taste and in a clean and wholesome manner. These pageants are dependent upon the goodwill of the contestants and their parents, many of whom would be likely to object if their daughters entered a MISS U.S.A. Beauty Pageant which they thought to have any relation to a MISS NUDE U.S.A. Beauty Pageant. In addition, the standards of the television broadcasting industry and of plaintiff's telecast sponsors oblige plaintiff to maintain a high moral tone to its beauty pageants and all associations therewith in the public mind.

6. Plaintiff is the owner of the following trademarks, registered in the years indicated:

6.1. MISS UNIVERSE (# 620,557) 1956

6.2. MISS U.S.A. (# 810,421) 1966

6.3. MISS U.S.A. BEAUTY PAGEANT (# 847,877) 1968

7. Plaintiff is the owner of the following servicemarks, registered in the years indicated:

7.1. MISS U.S.A. (# 808,974) 1966

7.2. MISS UNITED STATES OF AMERICA (# 808,975) 1966

8. Plaintiff derives considerable...

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6 practice notes
  • Miss Universe, Inc. v. Patricelli, Nos. 62
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (2nd Circuit)
    • January 16, 1985
    ...considered as modifying a "primary title," since the word "Venus" is a proper noun, not a modifier. Cf. Miss Universe, Inc. v. Flesher, 433 F.Supp. 271, 274 (C.D.Cal.1977) (modifying adjective more likely to confuse than noun). Thus, "Venus" inserted between the words "Miss" and "U.S.A." sa......
  • Miss Universe, Inc. v. Pitts, Civ. A. No. 89-0489.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 5th Circuit. United States District Courts. 5th Circuit. Western District of Louisiana
    • April 14, 1989
    ...425 (N.D.Ga. 1981); (c) Miss Nude U.S.A., Ms. Nude U.S.A., Miss Nude-U.S.A. and Ms. Nude, U.S.A. in Miss Universe, Inc. v. Flesher, 433 F.Supp. 271 (C.D.Cal.1977), modified, 605 F.2d 1130 (9th Cir.1979); (d) Miss Black 714 F. Supp. 218 Universe Beauty Pageant and Miss Black Universe Interna......
  • Miss Universe, Inc. v. Flesher, Nos. 77-2435
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (9th Circuit)
    • October 4, 1979
    ...for a beauty pageant promoted by them prior to 1976, viz. MISS NUDE INTERNATIONAL Beauty Pageant." Miss Universe, Inc. v. Flesher, 433 F.Supp. 271, 272-273 In July 1976, having learned of the defendants' contest, the plaintiff asked the defendants to desist from using the Miss Nude U.S.A. t......
  • Creative Staffing, Inc. v. Creative Financial Staffing, LLC, Opposition 91124801
    • United States
    • United States Patent and Trademark Office. United States Patent and Trademark Office, Trademark Trial and Appeal Board
    • April 12, 2005
    ...189 U.S.P.Q. 212 (TTAB 1975)(likelihood of confusion between MISS U.S.A. and MISS NUDE U.S.A.). Accord, Miss Universe, Inc. v. Flesher, 433 F.Supp. 271, 200 U.S.P.Q. 330 (C.D.Cal. 1977)(any insertion by defendant of word between MISS and U.S.A., as an adjective or other word modifying U.S.A......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
6 cases
  • Miss Universe, Inc. v. Patricelli, Nos. 62
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (2nd Circuit)
    • January 16, 1985
    ...considered as modifying a "primary title," since the word "Venus" is a proper noun, not a modifier. Cf. Miss Universe, Inc. v. Flesher, 433 F.Supp. 271, 274 (C.D.Cal.1977) (modifying adjective more likely to confuse than noun). Thus, "Venus" inserted between the words "Miss" and "U.S.A." sa......
  • Miss Universe, Inc. v. Pitts, Civ. A. No. 89-0489.
    • United States
    • United States District Courts. 5th Circuit. United States District Courts. 5th Circuit. Western District of Louisiana
    • April 14, 1989
    ...425 (N.D.Ga. 1981); (c) Miss Nude U.S.A., Ms. Nude U.S.A., Miss Nude-U.S.A. and Ms. Nude, U.S.A. in Miss Universe, Inc. v. Flesher, 433 F.Supp. 271 (C.D.Cal.1977), modified, 605 F.2d 1130 (9th Cir.1979); (d) Miss Black 714 F. Supp. 218 Universe Beauty Pageant and Miss Black Universe Interna......
  • Miss Universe, Inc. v. Flesher, Nos. 77-2435
    • United States
    • United States Courts of Appeals. United States Court of Appeals (9th Circuit)
    • October 4, 1979
    ...for a beauty pageant promoted by them prior to 1976, viz. MISS NUDE INTERNATIONAL Beauty Pageant." Miss Universe, Inc. v. Flesher, 433 F.Supp. 271, 272-273 In July 1976, having learned of the defendants' contest, the plaintiff asked the defendants to desist from using the Miss Nude U.S.A. t......
  • Creative Staffing, Inc. v. Creative Financial Staffing, LLC, Opposition 91124801
    • United States
    • United States Patent and Trademark Office. United States Patent and Trademark Office, Trademark Trial and Appeal Board
    • April 12, 2005
    ...189 U.S.P.Q. 212 (TTAB 1975)(likelihood of confusion between MISS U.S.A. and MISS NUDE U.S.A.). Accord, Miss Universe, Inc. v. Flesher, 433 F.Supp. 271, 200 U.S.P.Q. 330 (C.D.Cal. 1977)(any insertion by defendant of word between MISS and U.S.A., as an adjective or other word modifying U.S.A......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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