David Hogg
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By Ben Langlotz

Remember when Newsweek used to be important? Well, it became important again to me last month. I had spent a family day on a Sunday with the phone off, full attention on the kids. Late in the afternoon, I turned the phone on and saw a Google Alert email. I have it set to search for anything in the news with “firearms patent.” This was more interesting than the usual stuff.

Newsweek had written an article about me and about what I wrote last month (I saw an anti-gun activist announce his business brand plans for a leftist pillow company, before he filed to protect his brand). My newsletters are published on by website blog and I had tweeted about it.

The folks I embarrassed with my pillow trademark activity apparently had a pipeline to top media reporters. The Newsweek reporter had emailed me in the morning (again, phone off) asking for comments. Before I had a chance to respond, here’s what I found online. It started like this:

A Donald Trump-supporting attorney announced he filed a trademark for Good Pillow before gun control activist David Hogg—and suggested it is “a good brand to put on pillows with a pro-gun civil rights message.”

Firearms patent and trademark attorney Ben Langlotz revealed he had “scooped” Hogg in an April 5 post on his website titled “how I taught a Harvard Boy a lesson about trademarks.”

He said: “I was surfing Twitter one evening in February when I ran across a story about David Hogg’s new scheme.”

The scheme Langlotz referred to was Hogg’s February 9 announcement on Twitter that his and co-founder William LeGate’s planned company name would be Good Pillow.

Langlotz said it had given him “a wonderful, awful idea.”

“Could this political attention-hogg have made the ultimate product announcement blunder?” he wrote.

“I’ve seen it countless times: the new product is announced, but the company didn’t apply first to register the trademark.

“I quickly clicked over to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office website and searched Good Pillow: Nothing filed.”

Langlotz said he filed the request in order to “undermine his (Hogg) nefarious leftist plans” or to “own the libs,” and that he intends to offer pillows under the brand name.

Now hold on a minute. Right there, before you and me, is the proof that the mainstream news media is the enemy of the people. The one most important fact in the story, the one thing that will determine the actual real-world outcome of this potential legal dispute, they got wrong.

Not just wrong, but EXACTLY BACKWARDS FROM THE TRUTH.  And not just backwards, but wrong in the way that makes the conservative party (me) look like an idiot and an incompetent lawyer.

What I actually wrote:

Notice that I didn’t say that I filed it to vex or irritate Hogg. Nor to undermine his nefarious leftist plans, nor to protect an honorable conservative businessman in Mike Lindell. didn’t do it to “own the libs”….  I didn’t even do it to have a good story to write about in my newsletter – at least not primarily.

I did it because I really, genuinely, and authentically intended – at the moment of clicking under oath – that I truly intended to offer pillows under the Good Pillow brand name.

Think about that. In the Newsweek article, most of the above content are my own written words that they copied and pasted from my blog into their article. That’s fine, but they managed to copy-and-paste one key error by turning MY MAIN POINT on its head.

The whole point of the article (and a side benefit of the whole kerfuffle) was to help educate my readers about the importance of filing trademarks before you announce them, and having a true intention to use the trademark is critical.

And for that and the chance to reiterate the point, I suppose I should thank Newsweek.

No Such Thing as Bad Publicity?

If I had written what they said I did, I’d look like something other than an experienced and capable trademark attorney. So I sent a quick email to Newsweek:

I see that your article made a critical error in reporting my published account.

My article very carefully and deliberately makes a point about my intentions, which are the core of this whole legal matter.

Your article got the critical legal point wrong, when it wrote: “Langlotz said he filed the request in order to “undermine his (Hogg) nefarious leftist plans” or to “own the libs,””.

The error creates a false impression of professional incompetence and a lack of knowledge about the legal requirements for Intent-to-Use filing, which is extremely damaging to my professional reputation after 31 years specializing in the field.  This would seem to call for a correction and public retraction that clarifies that the error was the result of an inaccurate account of my published newsletter that clearly stated the opposite of what the first version of the Newsweek article initially reported.

And within hours, Newsweek corrected the error, and added:

Correction: This article originally stated that Langlotz filed the request in order to “undermine his (Hogg) nefarious leftist plans” and “own the libs.” Langlotz’s website post states that he filed the request not to undermine Hogg or to score political points. Newsweek regrets the error.

Which shows that they’ll push as hard as they can get away with it, but will back off when they have to.

I’m Uncancellable!

Look very carefully at what Newsweek wrote (the reporter is in the UK, oddly covering politics of US gun-issue activists):

Langlotz has previously tweeted favorably about Trump, writing on Twitter in January that “Trump was the first thing the GOP did well in my lifetime,” and called the former president a “True American hero,” in March.

You see what they did there? Does it smell like they tried to “cancel” me. They raised my past support for President Trump, which has nothing to do with the issue. They even put it in the headline that begins “Trump-supporting attorney….”

Now, I’m as proud as can be to have supported Trump since the beginning (OK, I voted for Ted Cruz in the 2016 primary) and still contend that Trump is by far the best President of my lifetime. It would be a dream come true if I somehow ended up a “Trump attorney” as the Newsweek article web code put it: “https://www.newsweek.com/trump-attorney-trademarked-good-pillow-before-david-hogg-william-legate-1582718”.

But I believe they really thought they had the big “gotcha” over me by inserting this presumably discrediting or embarrassing factoid in the article. Which makes me wonder whether these 20-something geniuses who drive the media narrative really have a clue.

Fact or Fake news

I mean, they’re quoting from my own publication. From my own published marketing material I employ to gain clients. Can they really believe that this would hurt me to promote my promotional material?

Recounting this tale to another conservative lawyer friend, he remarked: “Ben, you’re uncancellable!” He said I probably had a more politically conservative “book” (my client base) than any other lawyer or law firm in the nation.

I wonder if that might actually be right. I’ve spent decades openly speaking my mind about guns, the law, and liberty, indifferent to those I might offend and delighted to welcome those it attracts. I’ve had thousands of private conversations in our own industry “bubble” over the decades that have shown me that our principles of liberty and conservative politics will never divide us.

Hate Mail

A number of enterprising folks looked me up and used my law firm web page inquiry address to send me some love notes. None were clever or clean enough to repeat here.

But one was a young trademark lawyer from LA who took the time to start a conversation:

As you likely know, trademarks in the US are based on use, not filing. And, per Prof. Beebe, bad faith correlates with a 97% likelihood that infringement will be found. Good job creating evidence against yourself on Twitter. It’s proof for the Dunning Krueger effect, I guess.

I was impressed at how he got two obscure look-it-up references in three sentences to make one point. He assumed I did a “self-own” because he believed Newsweek. A good example of what defamation law is all about.

So I wrote back that “that the fake news got it exactly 100% wrong about my intentions.”  And being a sharp young buck whose righteous message was based on a falsehood, he kept fighting, looking for something he could win (I get these guys on the other side of disputes, and have ways to handle them).

He then got long-winded, quoting statutes and telling me how my enjoying the side benefit of irritating a twit meant that a judge would rule that I had no intent to start a pillow company (or to arrange for Café Press to sell pillows branded my way). Possibly. There are plenty of politically corrupt judges who will rule against the law in a way that pleases the left.

But my young LA colleague wrote:

“there is also history of precedent finding priority based on activity analogous to use in commerce (i.e., “analogous use” cases), including activities in preparation for doing business under a particular mark.

I’m open to learning new things, but I’m pretty confident that blabbing on free social media that one plans to use a brand name is not “trademark use” under the law. The core principle is that the first user wins the rights, and filing Intent-to-Use gives effective use nationwide.

But our woke millennial lawyer wasn’t content to just ‘splain me the law.

You seem like a smart guy, Ben. You clearly have a knack for branding, as I’m sure this publicity and your pro-gun message create a steady stream of business. That said, I suspect you may have lost direction along the way, as you are now trying to game the trademark system—and doing so poorly—in order to teach a 21-year-old survivor of a school shooting a lesson. I believe you are better than that, Ben, but I guess you should do what you think is best.

Aw shucks. But poor me, having “lost direction.” I suppose advocating for individual liberties and the Second Amendment is evidence of a lost soul to the hipster lawyers of LA, and the law partners they hope to impress.

I wonder if in his mind, gaming the system poorly is better than gaming it well? My advice to clients is to know the law and make the best decision for your business based on that.

But the “tell” that he knows he has lost is when he pulled out his “human shield” in the form of his “designated survivor” victim he purports to protect. At least he didn’t call him a child.

My response is that if you’re attacking my liberties, you’re my adversary at best and I’m not going to pull punches, even if you were anointed by your side precisely for your presumed untouchability (the same goes for you, Greta). These “Tiny Toon activists” are empowered as mouthpieces for the most powerful forces in society, and if their feeling are hurt (by having to pick a different trademark?) then the responsibility is with those who exploit them, not those who defend their liberty against them.

By the way, Hogg has since abandoned his dreams of becoming a progressive pillow-making mogul.

Still Intend to Use?

So, now that most of this has blown over, the Good Pillow folks have apparently moved on, and I’ve had subject matter to share for two consecutive months, people ask: “So Ben, are you still going to make pillows?”

It’s a good question. Legally, all that matters is whether my intent was genuine upon filing the application, as a swore under oath, and have always contended. But Intent-to-Use trademark applicants don’t need to maintain a fierce intention until use begins. One very common approach is to file Intent-to-Use with the mindset that “I’ll use it if the trademark examiner approves it.” So I’ll wait and see, and report as my application progresses.

InchMetric hex tool
Courtesy inchmetric.com

I used that strategy for my “side hustle” hex key set invention, with metric and fractional keys intermixed, arranged by size. I applied Intent-to-Use for both Hybrid and Integrated, and picked Hybrid because it was the successful legal option.  MUCH more next month on that patent and trademark project that continues to help me appreciate what my clients go through.


Ben Langlotz is the nation’s leading firearms patent and trademark attorney, and the author of Bulletproof Firearms Business: The Legal Guide to Success Under Fire. He is trusted by more firearms industry companies than any other lawyer or law firm in the nation, and is consistently ranked at the top of all attorneys in securing gun patents and gun trademarks. He’s also the inventor of the InchMetric Hybrid Hex Key Tool


This article originally appeared at gunpatent.com and is reprinted here with permission. 



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  1. I laughed my head off when I first read about this a while back (it went viral among IP lawyers soon after it happened, as this kind of amateur mistake is non uncommon). It is yet another example of how Hogg is nothing but an empty shirt and a useful idiot.

    That Harvard admitted this dimbulb while withdrawing its acceptance of his infinitely more intelligent and qualified classmate Kyle Kashuv tells all you need to know about the Ivy League these days.

  2. Ah the left.
    YOU must play by the rules! Not JUST the letter of the law either, the spirit of the law must be upheld! Winning by the rules should be thrown out if we don’t like it!

    No rules for us though. Sucker.

    I think the agency that best encapsulates this, consistently, is the ATF.
    It’s how they all think and act though.

    I’d buy a Good Pillow from this gentleman. I can spend a little of the money I haven’t spent on Coca-Cola and Nike products to get a decent pillow and support a conservative businessman.

      • Thankyou for summing up the left’s arguments, and why it will come to blood sooner or later. If everyone doesn’t play by the rules, soon no one does.

      • What he needs to do is make a limited run of Good Pillow branded Pillow style gun rests. Maybe even have a couple liberal tears coming off from a snowflake logo really stick it to the libs those would sell quickly.

  3. As a fellow school-shooting “survivor ” (I’ve never been at a school while a shooting was taking place either, just like Hoggboy) , I would like to dispute the author’s entire claim. The reason for the failure of Good Pillow was the difficulty of harvesting unicorn down for stuffing the pillows with… apparently it has to be done by the light of a full new moon by Union leprechauns while the animals are asleep and floating in air. The trademark debacle could have been solved by buying off the proper judges.

  4. The good guys win one!!! Without property rights and the Bill of Rights, this country would never have gotten ths far.

  5. Pillow fights are fun.
    I’m thinking of starting a pillow company branded ‘ Ouch Pillow’
    The filler is rocks and the covering is burlap.

  6. Looking at David Hogg’s picture i get the impression that inspite of his anti-firearms advocacy, he may in fact actually be taking discharged loads from a different type of gun.

  7. A good guy with a pillow beats a bad guy with a pillow.


    An attorney with a good pillow beats a twit with a pillow.

  8. “Remember when Newsweek used to be important?”

    As for the rest, cool, but I would caution against actually believing that you’re “uncancelable”. Hogg’s a nobody at this point. His 15 minutes were up a long time ago. He won’t be defended on the same level as someone *cough* important *cough*.

    • To be slightly fair, their coverage of the TWA Flight 800 shootdown was pretty good. I kept the issue for quite a while for reference, but too many moves eventually means stuff gets left behind.

  9. d.hogg is a complete bozo along the lines of anthony weiner. Next time you have a trademark don’t talk about it just file it.

  10. Newsflash!

    Corporate attorney with 30 years experience pulls a fast one on college kid… And crows about it repeatedly in articles, tweets and social media posts.

  11. Hogg should apply for a patent and trademark for a bike seat pillow.
    He should name it: “The I wasn’t there pillow”.
    Will Soros back him financially? I doubt it.
    Look at the picture kids, this a Harvard dropout in the making.

    • “He should name it: “The I wasn’t there pillow”.“

      Question: Is it patriotic to lie about American tragedies where children died?

      “One of the latest rumors — circulated in at least a dozen stories flagged as potentially false by Facebook users — claims that David Hogg, a senior named in previous false stories, was not actually at the high school during the shooting.

      Those stories are indeed false.

      The allegations are based on an out-of-context quote from Hogg. In a CBS News documentary, the 17-year-old said: “On the day of the shooting, I got my camera and got on my bike and rode as fast as I could three miles from my house to the school to get as much video and to get as many interviews as I could because I knew that this could not be another mass shooting.”

      With a glaring spelling error in its headline, the website julyfourthnews.com declared on March 28: “David Hogg Unintentially Reveals He Was Not At School When Parkland Shooting Happened.”

      “SHOCK: David Hogg Changes Story, Wasn’t At School When Cruz Opened Fire,” reads bigleaguepolitics.com’s March 26 headline.

      But at no point did Hogg ever say that in the CBS News documentary, “39 Days,” or elsewhere.

      Interviews and videos published in the days after the shooting support Hogg’s narrative that he was at the school when the shooter opened fire and that Hogg went home at some point and returned to the scene later that night.

      In fact, Hogg, a student journalist and member of the school’s news show, recorded interviews with his peers inside the school as it remained locked down. The Miami Herald published that footage Feb. 15, which shows Hogg asking his fellow students about their views on gun control.

      Time also published a video on Feb. 15 that was recorded by Hogg during the lockdown. In it, Hogg says “it’s 2:52” and that he “heard one gunshot.” (The shooting reportedly occurred from 2:21 p.m. to 2:28 p.m., and the lockdown was lifted at 3:36 p.m.)“


      • Fact checking is unfortunately more about the fact checkers than about facts. Calling oneself a “fact checker” doesn’t mean one is actually checking facts. Don’t ignore the importance of propaganda – their side knows this well.

        Not only do I think David Hogg was not at the school, but I harbor doubts he was even a student of high-school age. A crisis actor jive hummer; know what I mean?

        • “Not only do I think David Hogg was not at the school, but I harbor doubts he was even a student of high-school age.“

          What evidence do you have to support your belief?

      • “Time also published a video on Feb. 15 that was recorded by Hogg during the lockdown. In it, Hogg says “it’s 2:52” and that he “heard one gunshot.” (The shooting reportedly occurred from 2:21 p.m. to 2:28 p.m.

        Answer me this troll. If the shooting stopped at 2:28 then how did Hogg hear one gunshot at 2:52? He snuck back in when the cops were running away.

        The Harvard dropout cannot even do simple math. Why? Because he was cutting school.

        In a way we are all just as much as Parkland survivors as Hogg, I heard a gunshot on TV last night at about 9PM. This Hogg guys a fraud, other students say so.

        It was a tragedy that could have been easily avoided IF the PD and FBI did their jobs.
        They didn’t.

  12. I think David Hogg is generally execrable, but I foresee a second act! Alas, I think the chances of this dork not finishing at Harvard are nil because he needs that desperately, and it means for the forseeable future we’ll have to listen to this pimp blow on about stuff he knows little about and always attached to the word “Harvard” (unless of course, we get lucky like with the unexpected pandemic, the unexpected use of Zoom calls, and the unexpected result of that other double Harvard pimp publicly pleasuring hisself such that his very name has entered the vocabulary (not always a good sign), as in Toobining, but you really can’t count on that sort of thing that was just a gift from the heavens). No, I see a match made in heaven between David Hogg and Greta Thunberg. They’re about the same age, and just the very magic of their togetherness would suggest a bright future, possibly even more than the Ginger Prince and his spouse the Duchess of Malibu, another match made in heaven. Lordy, Lordy, I just got all tingly just thinking about it.

  13. David Hogg may have given up his dreams of becoming a “progressive pillow-making mogul” but at the end of the day he’s just a bratty little pillow-biter.

  14. If the 2A Good Pillow comes to fruition, this Auld Fart will buy one or more. Thanks for an article that made my day. I’ve never had the desire to enter the Law field, I’m not quick enough for the Mental Gymnastics required (neither was Joe Biden). I can still appreciate those who are
    Thank you again.


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