Dr. Seuss Enterprises, L.P. v. Penguin Books USA, Inc.
United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
109 F.3d 1394 (1997)
Penguin Books, USA, Inc. (defendant) published a book called The Cat NOT in the Hat! A Parody by Dr. Juice. The book was a satire of the O.J. Simpson murder trial, parodying the book The Cat in the Hat, which was written by Dr. Seuss. Dr. Seuss Enterprises, L.P. (plaintiff) owned the trademarks for the words “Dr. Seuss,” the words “Cat in the Hat,” and the drawing of the Cat character with his stove-pipe hat. Penguin’s book’s cover and back had an illustration of a person in a distinctive stovepipe hat that looked like the Cat’s hat. Dr. Seuss sued Penguin for trademark infringement. The district court found that many of the likelihood-of-confusion factors were indeterminate at that stage of the litigation, and granted Dr. Seuss a preliminary injunction on other grounds. Penguin appealed, arguing that regardless of a likelihood of confusion, its book was entitled to protection as a parody.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (O’Scannlain, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 705,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Berkeley, and Northwestern—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students.Unlock this case briefRead our student testimonials
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students.Learn about our approachRead more about Quimbee
Here's why 705,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 44,400 briefs, keyed to 983 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.