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Thursday, 23 October 2003

ECJ DECIDES ADIDAS v FITNESSWORLD DILUTION CASE

The ECJ's judgment in Adidas-Salomon v Fitnessworld is out today. The full judgment isn't available on the ECJ's website yet but a press release is, saying:

"The Court has found that it is not necessary for there to exist a likelihood of confusion between the sign and the mark with a reputation in order to claim infringement of that mark. It is sufficient if the relevant section of the public establishes a link between the sign and the mark even though it does not confuse them.

However, the Court has specified that where, according to a finding of fact by the national court, the relevant section of the public views the sign purely as an embellishment, it does not necessarily establish any link with the mark with a reputation. It follows that the proprietor of the mark with a reputation cannot prevent the use of that embellishment by a third party."

Sadly the press-release doesn't give any article numbers so it's hard to know if the ECJ is talking about Article 5(1)(b) or Article 5(2). Watch this space - more from the IPKat as and when it becomes available.


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