The appellate decision is believed to be the first concerning the
shape of the smoking instrument’s water container. Inhale Inc. claimed
Starbuzz Tobacco was infringing its base design registered with the U.S.
Copyright Office in 2011.
“With full knowledge that Inhale designed and developed the
3-dimensional shape and configuration of the Hookah Water Container that
is protected by the copyright registration, Defendants willfully chose
to reproduce, import, promote, advertise, and sell the infringing Hookah
Water Container throughout the United States without the permission or
consent from Inhale,” reads the Los Angeles federal court suit, (.pdf) lodged in 2011.
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