Quiz: Test your knowledge of January’s top legal news

Recapping the most significant — or just plain strangest — news stories of the past month

January

 

Think you’re caught up on all of January’s top legal news? Then test your skills right here with our monthly news quiz. Read through the following 10 questions, and then click through to the next page to discover how much you remember about this month’s most significant and strangest legal stories.

1. For the 21st straight year, which U.S. company led the way in number of patents in 2013?

  1. Google
  2. Microsoft
  3. IBM
  4. Qualcomm

2. On Jan. 1, undocumented immigrant Sergio Garcia received a license to practice law in which U.S. state?

  1. Nevada
  2. Texas
  3. Florida
  4. California

3. On Jan. 9, aluminum giant Alcoa was slapped with a $384 million fine for Foreign Corrupt Practices Act violations stemming from dealings with what country?

  1. Brazil
  2. Kazakhstan
  3. Bahrain
  4. Indonesia

4. Which major music star filed a trademark infringement suit to stop a virtual coin developer from using his name and likeness?

  1. Jay-Z
  2. Kanye West
  3. Justin Timberlake
  4. Blake Shelton

5. Sure, we all know about Target, but which high-end retailer is also facing data security issues after it was revealed on Jan. 22 that approximately 2,400 customers’ credit cards had been compromised?

  1. Neiman Marcus
  2. Nordstrom
  3. Saks Fifth Avenue
  4. Lord & Taylor

6. Google signed an IP cross-licensing deal with which smartphone maker that will last the next 10 years?

  1. Apple
  2. Samsung
  3. BlackBerry
  4. Nokia

7. The creators of which Fox show may now go to court over plagiarism charges?

  1. Family Guy
  2. Brooklyn Nine-Nine
  3. The Simpsons
  4. New Girl

8. Which company’s appeal to have a court-appointed compliance monitor removed was rejected by a district court in January?

  1. Goldman Sachs
  2. JPMorgan Chase
  3. Microsoft
  4. Apple

9. The USPTO approved a trademark for a key part of what popular mobile application’s name?

  1. Candy Crush Saga
  2. Angry Birds
  3. Snapchat
  4. Vine

10. The real-life version of the lead character in what recent movie is under fire for shirking court-ordered restitution payments?

  1. The Wolf of Wall Street
  2. Gravity
  3. 12 Years a Slave
  4. The Secret Life of Walter Mitty

 

Answers are on the next page, so have your score sheet nice and finalized before clicking through.

IBM

 

1. For the 21st straight year, which U.S. company led the way in number of patents in 2013?

  1. Google
  2. Microsoft
  3. IBM
  4. Qualcomm

3. IBM

Oh come on, Google hasn’t even been around 21 years! It’s the old stand-by IBM, which has racked record numbers once again, amassing 6,809 patents. That was an increase over the 6,478 patents for the company in 2012, which was a record at the time. IBM specifically led the way in the big data and cloud computing arenas, capitalizing on its heavy technology R&D. Strangely enough, a substantial portion of those patents came from overseas work — almost one-third, according to the company. Samsung ranked second on the list, while Canon came in third.

 

California

 

2. On Jan. 1, undocumented immigrant Sergio Garcia received a license to practice law in which U.S. state?

  1. Nevada
  2. Texas
  3. Florida
  4. California

4. California

With the beginning of the year, a new law came into effect from Governor Jerry Brown’s office which allowed Garcia to finally realize his dream. Although Garcia has lived in America for most of his life, he still was considered an illegal immigrant even while graduating from law school and passing the California bar exam. Garcia challenged a law put into place in 1996 that prevented professional licenses from being granted to illegal immigrants. The challenge resulted in the passing of a bill in the California legislature that allows him to practice in the state without a green card.

 

Bahrain flag

 

3. On Jan. 9, aluminum giant Alcoa was slapped with a $384 million fine for Foreign Corrupt Practices Act violations stemming from dealings with what country?

  1. Brazil
  2. Kazakhstan
  3. Bahrain
  4. Indonesia

3. Bahrain

Alcoa has been dealing with Bahraini officials since 1989, but according to a recent SEC and DOJ investigation, those dealings haven’t always been clean. According to an SEC order, Alcoa retained a consultant for its dealings in the country who the company claimed was “well versed in the normal ways of Middle East business.” However, the U.S. government says that Alcoa “knew or consciously disregarded the fact that the relationship with the consultant was designed to generate funds that facilitated corrupt payments to Bahraini officials.” Through the consultant, Alcoa allegedly offered more than $110 million to Bahraini officials in exchange for key aluminum contracts.

 

Kanye West

 

4. Which major music star filed a trademark infringement suit to stop a virtual coin developer from using his name and likeness?

  1. Jay-Z
  2. Kanye West
  3. Justin Timberlake
  4. Blake Shelton

2. Kanye West

The idea of “Coinye” was solid in theory — introduce a virtual currency lampooning a famous music star in order to drum up immediate public intrigue in your product. Well, they got the public intrigue down, as Coinye’s creators appeared on multiple morning shows. They just didn’t, you know, actually ever get Kanye West’s permission to use his name and likeness. Kanye’s lawyers originally slapped the virtual currency developers with a cease-and-desist on Jan. 6, which the developers promptly ignored. However, facing a potential trademark infringement suit, the developers agreed to shut down the currency on Jan. 15, posting on their website, “COINYE IS DEAD. You win, Kanye.”

 

Neiman Marcus

 

5. Sure, we all know about Target, but which high-end retailer is also facing data security issues after it was revealed on Jan. 22 that approximately 2,400 customers’ credit cards had been compromised?

  1. Neiman Marcus
  2. Nordstrom
  3. Saks Fifth Avenue
  4. Lord & Taylor

1. Neiman Marcus

High-end shoppers aren’t immune to feeling the data breach pressure: Just ask all those who shopped at Neiman Marcus between July 16 and Oct. 30, 2013. The company said that a security breach may have compromised 1.1 million credit cards, and major credit card retailers had already reported improprieties on approximately 2,400 customers’ cards. “We deeply regret and are very sorry that some of our customers' payment cards were used fraudulently after making purchases at our stores…. We want you always to feel confident shopping at Neiman Marcus, and your trust in us is our absolute priority,” Neiman Marcus said in its online statement.

 

Samsung

 

6. Google signed an IP cross-licensing deal with which smartphone maker that will last the next 10 years?

  1. Apple
  2. Samsung
  3. BlackBerry
  4. Nokia

2. Samsung

As positively intriguing as a Google/Apple partnership would be, Google has decided to stick with familiarity and increase its current relationship with mobile technology giant Samsung. Samsung, which already runs the Android operating system on its smartphones, has agreed to the deal with Google in an attempt to lower litigation costs and strengthen its presence in the technology space. The deal covers all current patents as well as those the two companies may file in the coming years. “By working together on agreements like this, companies can reduce the potential for litigation and focus instead on innovation,” Allen Lo, deputy general counsel for patents at Google, said in a news release.

 

New Girl

 

7. The creators of which Fox show may now go to court over plagiarism charges?

  1. Family Guy
  2. Brooklyn Nine-Nine
  3. The Simpsons
  4. New Girl 

4. New Girl

Not even a quirky Zooey Deschanel smile can save the show's creator Elizabeth Meriwether, William Morris Endeavor Entertainment LLC, and two executive producers from facing a plagiarism suit brought by two screenwriters who believe the show rips off their script. Stephanie Counts and Shari Gold allegedly shopped their own pilot script for “Square One” to networks, where it received interest from William Morris. However, months later, the writers say William Morris stopped returning their calls, and then the extremely similar “New Girl” began to be put under development by Fox. Fox allegedly made the writers a $10,000 settlement offer, but the two refused. Counts and Gold seek monetary compensation as well as an injunction to stop the show from filming future episodes.

 

Apple Logo

 

8. Which company’s appeal to have a court-appointed compliance monitor removed was rejected by a district court in January?

  1. Goldman Sachs
  2. JPMorgan Chase
  3. Microsoft
  4. Apple

4. Apple

This ongoing dance between Apple and compliance monitor Michael Bromwich is fun to watch, isn’t it? First, a district court appointed Bromwich after determining that Apple conspired with publishers to charge higher e-book prices. Then, Apple attempted to have Bromwich removed from his post, citing his extraordinarily high rates that the company did not feel was fair. But on Jan. 16, U.S. District Judge Denise Cote ruled that Apple “failed to show” it is in the “the public interest” to remove Bromwich from his post overseeing Apple’s e-book pricing regulations. Cote also denied an Apple request to delay regulatory oversight, saying the governmental regulations posed no “irreparable harm” to the company. So where does this maze go next? To the 2nd Circuit, which already issued an injunction allowing Apple a temporary reprieve from Bromwich’s oversight.

 

Candy Crush

 

9. The USPTO approved a trademark for a key part of what popular mobile application’s name?

  1. Candy Crush Saga
  2. Angry Birds
  3. Snapchat
  4. Vine

1. Candy Crush Saga

King, the developer of popular mobile game Candy Crush Saga, must feel like it lined up five purple candies in a row after the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office approved its application to trademark the word “Candy” for use in mobile applications. The developer says it will not “enforce against all uses of ‘Candy’ — some are legitimate, and, of course, we would not ask app developers who use the term legitimately to stop doing so.” However, some other mobile applications, such as All Candy Casino Slots — Jewels Craze Connect: Big Blast Mania Land, could be in King’s crosshairs as a result of the ruling.

 

The Wolf of Wall Street

 

10. The real-life version of the lead character in what recent movie is under fire for shirking court-ordered restitution payments?

  1. The Wolf of Wall Street
  2. Gravity
  3. 12 Years a Slave
  4. The Secret Life of Walter Mitty

1. The Wolf of Wall Street

They don’t call him a wolf for nothing. Jordan Belfort, who is played by Leonard DiCaprio in the Martin Scorcese film, is receiving no accolades from authorities, unlike his film counterpart, who is getting plenty of love from the Academy. Prosecutors claim that Belfort has been neglecting to pay his court-ordered restitution to victims of his schemes. The attorney’s office says that instead, Belfort has been living off of book proceeds, movie royalties and motivational-speaker fees. He’s settled in Australia, where U.S. tax authorities cannot touch his income. In 1999, Belfort pled guilty to defrauding investors out of $200 million. He later wrote about his experiences in the book The Wolf of Wall Street, from which the movie came.

 

Haven't had enough? Check out the news quizzes for December, November and October!

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