Reflecting on Alt Legal and Corsearch Live: An Insightful Recap

  • Trademark Clearance
Reflecting on Alt Legal and Corsearch Live: An Insightful Recap

On March 19th, the trademark community came together in the heart of New York City for an exclusive event that promised to be both informative and enriching. Alt Legal joined forces with Corsearch to present ‘Alt Legal and Corsearch Live’, an event tailored for trademark professionals eager to stay at the forefront of industry trends and advancements. 

Attended by 150 trademark experts, the event proved to be a resounding success, offering a blend of networking opportunities and engaging Continuing Legal Education (CLE) sessions.  

These sessions, led by esteemed panelists from organizations such as Warner Music Group, Estée Lauder, PwC, and more, explored a diverse range of topics crucial to the modern trademark landscape, which are covered in more detail below. 

Cents and Sensibility: Practical approaches to running a lean in-house trademark team 


  • Sofya Nadgorny, VP of Trademarks at Warner Music Group 
  • Shama Elliott, Trademark Manager at PwC 
  • Stacey Foltz Stark, IP Counsel at Estée Lauder 
  • Stephanie Grenald, Former Senior Counsel at Amazon 

During the session, “Cents and Sensibility: Practical approaches to running a lean in-house trademark team”, attendees were treated to a wealth of insights on optimizing costs while safeguarding brand integrity.  

Key takeaways: 

  1. Prioritize enforcement: Understand your business, critical markets, competitors, and prioritize enforcement efforts accordingly. 
  1. Demonstrate value: Stay on top of dockets and use data to demonstrate the value of your trademark efforts to the business. 
  1. Practical vs. registry use: Help the business distinguish between practical use and registry use of trademarks. 
  1. Trademark monitoring: Utilize tools like Google Alerts and Alt Legal Trademark Protection for effective trademark monitoring. 
  1. Caution with conflict: Proceed with caution if conflicts arise within your trademark portfolio to avoid jeopardizing registrations. 
  1. Understanding use: Differentiate between ephemeral and long-term use of marks to make informed filing decisions. 
  1. Portfolio management: Regularly audit trademarks and watches to ensure alignment with business objectives. 
  1. Domain management: Consider retaining a PI with an hourly rate for domain purchases and selling unused domains to mitigate costs. 
  1. Brand voice: Provide templates to outside counsel for demand letters to maintain brand voice consistency. 
  1. Clear risk assessment: Clearly communicate expectations to outside counsel regarding risk assessments to streamline the process and save resources. 


  • Matt Rubin, Commercial Executive at Corsearch 
  • Sam Kilb, Director, Legal Counsel at Jayaram Law 
  • Jessica Neer McDonald, Head of Trademarks at Midjourney 

The session, “The AI Brandwagon: Why AI is becoming so popular for trademark practice”, delved into the burgeoning role of AI in trademark law and its impact on trademark creation, clearance, protection, and beyond. 

Key takeaways: 

  1. Understanding open and closed systems: Recognize the distinction between open and closed AI systems and their implications for trademark practice. 
  1. AI in trademark creation: AI can assist in generating basic marks and logo designs, offering novel combinations of words and visual elements. 
  1. Specificity in closed system usage: When utilizing closed AI systems for trademark creation, ensure questions are pointed and specific to maximize effectiveness. 
  1. Clearance and conflicting marks: Despite AI-generated suggestions, trademarks must still undergo clearance to ensure non-infringement. 
  1. Enhanced search and clearance: AI augments traditional clearance searches, reducing irrelevant results and saving time and resources. 
  1. Cost and time savings: AI facilitates quick translation of complex legal information into accessible language, promoting efficiency and cost-effectiveness. 
  1. Predictive analytics: AI’s vast data analysis capabilities enable prediction of registration likelihood and examination outcomes, aiding strategic decision-making. 
  1. Drafting goods and services descriptions: AI assists in drafting comprehensive goods and services descriptions, especially beneficial for clients in specialized industries. 
  1. Trademark prosecution support: AI can streamline the trademark prosecution process by providing insights into examiner preferences and acceptance rates. 
  1. Future possibilities: AI’s evolution holds promise for predicting case outcomes, scraping data for evidence, and accelerating user adoption, outpacing even Web3 technology. 

AI on the Prize: Ethical considerations for emerging technologies 


  • Emil Ali, Partner at McCabe Ali and former USPTO OED attorney 

The insightful session, “AI on the Prize: Ethical considerations for emerging technologies”, provided attendees with a comprehensive overview of the ethical implications surrounding the use of AI in legal practice.  

Key takeaways: 

  1. Understanding AI technology: Lawyers must grasp the workings of AI tools and stay abreast of updates and terms of service to ensure competent usage. 
  1. Importance of verification: Verification is paramount when using AI tools, similar to traditional legal research platforms like Westlaw and Shepardizing. 
  1. Confidentiality concerns: Lawyers must navigate confidentiality issues when using AI, ensuring that client information remains protected. 
  1. Unauthorized practice of law: AI can support legal professionals but should not be used by non-lawyers to offer legal services or practice law, nor can ChatGPT sell legal services. 
  1. Supervising responsibilities: Law firm owners are responsible for supervising both human staff and AI tools used in their practice. 
  1. California guidelines: California guidelines are very helpful and emphasize the need for attorney supervision and review when employing AI tools in legal work. 
  1. Avoiding over-reliance: Lawyers should avoid over-reliance on generative AI to maintain critical attorney analysis fostered by traditional methods. 
  1. Client consent: Lawyers should disclose the use of AI in engagement letters and ensure clients understand its role in legal services provided. 
  1. Billing practices: Transparent billing practices are essential to ensure clients are not overcharged for tasks completed using AI tools. 
  1. USPTO guidance: While the USPTO hasn’t issued specific guidance on AI usage, attorneys should anticipate potential future requirements. 

We extend our gratitude to all attendees, speakers, and partners who made this event possible. Stay tuned for future endeavors as we continue to push the boundaries of innovation in trademark law and practice, and check out some photos from the event below.

Photo Credit: Harout Barsoumian, IG: @hbarsproductions