A Pennsylvania federal judge is refusing to let a nonprofit called Hidden City Philadelphia sue the city's ABC affiliate for trademark infringement over the video series "Hidden Philadelphia," ruling the project is protected by the First Amendment.

In a ruling on March 1, U.S. District Judge Juan R. Sánchez said that Hidden City — a group that provides news and information about Philadelphia history and architecture — had not cleared the high bar to sue ABC over the use of a trademark in a creative work.

"Because the title is artistically relevant and does not explicitly mislead as to the source or content of the videos, ABC's use of it is entitled to protection by the First Amendment," Judge Sánchez wrote. "Hidden City's trademark infringement claim based on the title is thus barred."

Lawsuits over the use of trademarks in things like books, movies and television are exceptionally difficult to win. Courts have ruled that authors are almost always protected by the First Amendment unless the use explicitly misleads consumers or serves no value to the story.

ABC is represented by Ballard Spahr attorneys Michael Berry and Hara Jacobs.

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