The trademark drama involving Jersey Shore cast member, Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino, doesn't stop. The MTV star is currently embroiled in a suit against Abercrombie & Fitch for trademark infringement stemming from the retailer's use "his" trademarks. Now, Viacom (MTV's parent company) has stepped in to oppose trademark registrations filed by Sorrentino and his company (MPS Entertainment, LLC). One of the trademarks at issue: "twinning," a combination of "twins" and "winning." Viacom filed an opposition in front of the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board, claiming ownership of all trademarks the cast members come up with during filming as per the classic 495 Productions Participant Agreement. Turns out, Sorrentino has little, if any rights, to these catchphrases that he claims are his.
By executing the Participant Agreement when he signed on to star in the TV show, Sorrentino assigned the rights to all of his "all ideas, gags, suggestions, themes, plots, stories, characters, characterizations, dialogue, text, designs, graphics, titles, drawings, artwork, digital works, songs, music, photography, video, film and other material whether or not fixed or reduced to drawing or writing, at any time heretofore or hereafter created or contributed by [him] which in any way relate to 'Jersey Shore.'" Other trademarks that are potentially at issue: "Gym, Tanning, Laundry," "Grenade," etc.