Yelp trademark lawsuit dismissed after settlement with Village Voice

by Heygood Orr and Pearson

The parent company of the Village Voice newspaper has reached a settlement with the online business reviewer Yelp in an intellectual property lawsuit that was filed two weeks earlier. The lawsuit accused Yelp of infringing on the Village Voice’s “best of” trademarks, which have appeared in the newspaper since 1979.

According to the lawsuit, the Village Voice objected to Yelp’s use of “Best of Phoenix,” “Best of San Francisco,” and similar terms on its website. The newspaper sent a cease-and-desist letter to Yelp in September 2012, but filed an intellectual property lawsuit against the website after it continued to use the trademarked phrases online.

In a recent filing, the Village Voice announced that both parties had agreed to a settlement and that it was voluntarily dismissing the trademark lawsuit. The newspaper stated that under the terms of the agreement, both parties would be responsible for paying their own legal costs.