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The Dark Web and Blockchain for Trademark Counsel

Level: Intermediate
Runtime: 91 minutes
Recorded Date: September 10, 2019
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  • History
  • Development and TOR
  • The Dark Web
  • Bitcoin
  • Blockchain Basics
  • Uses in Trademark Protection
  • Benefits
  • Licensing
  • Enforceability
  • Q & A
Runtime: 1 hour and 31 minutes
Recorded: September 10, 2019


Trademark counsel now regularly encounter references to the Dark Web, to Bitcoin, and to blockchain technology. The Dark Web seems to present a home for counterfeiting with "dark marketplaces" and cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin facilitating anonymous commerce. But blockchain – the technology that supports Bitcoin – also offers potential benefits to trademark owners.

This program will provide an introduction to the Dark Web, including a discussion of how it is used for illicit purposes, such as the sale or sharing of data, as well as proactive steps that brand owners can consider. Faculty will also offer a primer on blockchain technology, and discuss its possible uses in trademark transactions, and in establishing, licensing, and enforcing trademark rights.

This program was recorded on September 10th, 2019.

Provided By

American Bar Association
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Stephanie Wood Ellis

AntiFraud Product & Marketing Manager
OpSec Security

Stefanie is the Antifraud Product & Marketing Manager at OpSec Security. She is experienced in anti-fraud (anti-phishing & anti-malware for brand-associated malicious scams, employee spearphishing, BEC scams, etc.), brand and intellectual property protection for trademark & copyrights online, plus subject matter expertise on Dark Web cybercriminal practices and IP misuse.

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Bennett Collen


Bennett leads GoDaddy's blockchain + trademark initiative. Previously, he was the founder and CEO of Cognate: a platform that uses blockchain to help businesses protect and profit from their most valuable assets - their trademarks. Cognate was acquired by GoDaddy in September 2018.

He is the Coordinator of the Blockchain Task Force for the Emerging Issues Committee of the International Trademark Association (INTA), sits on the Blockchain Intellectual Property Council within the Digital Chamber of Commerce, and is a Founding Member of the Chamber's Token Alliance Group.

Bennett recently taught a CLE course on trademarks and blockchain. He also taught a Masterclass at the EU Intellectual Property Office’s “Blockathon” (blockchain hackathon), has spoken on trademarks and blockchain at events at the United States Capitol, Harvard Business School, University of Pennsylvania, Vanderbilt University, and Stanford University.

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Mark L. Robbins

Bereskin & Parr LLP

Mark Robbins is a partner with Bereskin & Parr LLP. Mark’s practice focuses on trademarks, copyright, and litigation with an emphasis on trademark protection and enforcement issues including trademark infringement, passing off, and oppositions.

Mark regularly appears before the Trade-marks Opposition Board and in Federal and Ontario court proceedings concerning trademark and copyright matters. He has also been co-counsel in a number of leading trademark cases concerning the rights of foreign trademark owners in Canada, trademark infringement on internet websites, and challenges to the rights of public authorities and universities to control the use of certain words and marks in Canada.

Mark is the Chair of the Canada subcommittee of the International Trademark Association’s (INTA) International Amicus Committee. With Dan Bereskin, he acted as counsel for the INTA as intervener in the Supreme Court of Canada in Masterpiece Inc. v. Alavida Lifestyles Inc., 2011 SCC 27. He is also Vice Chair of the “Trademarks and the Internet Committee” of the American Bar Association Section of Intellectual Property Law.

Mark has been actively involved with the Intellectual Property Institute of Canada (IPIC) having assisted in organizing, moderating, and presenting numerous IPIC educational seminars and meetings.

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