Dual Shock Shock
The IPKat reads from Bit-Tech that reports are trickling through that Sony has lost the patent infringement action brought against it by Immersion Technologies (a company part-owned by Nintendo). In result Sony may be forced to halt sales of its PS2 console.
Immersion sued Sony last year for infringing its patents, claiming it owns the technology that powers the rumble in Sony's Dual Shock controllers (pictured right). A similar claim, brought against Microsoft in respect of the XBox, was settled. Sony however fought on and, despite being unsuccesful last year, it was allowed to continue selling the PS2 pending appeal. If, as Bit-Tech indicates, the latest reports are verified, it's lost that appeal today.
Immersion Technologies is entitled to damages for past infringement, but it may well ask for injunctive relief too, which will mean that Sony will be ordered to pull PS2s off the shelf.
The IPKat is most concerned. If PS2s are grounded, how will an entire generation waste time? Merpel says, there's no guarantee that this will end in tears. Injunctive relief is still discretionary, even in the United States. Let's see what happens.
How to waste your time here and here
The most recent Trademark World (published monthly by Informa) is the March 2006 issue. The IPKat notes that it contains another progress report on the .eu domain - a subject that seems more popular with journals than with their readers, the IPKat thinks. This one's by Jonathan Robinson of NetNames, a business which (as its name suggests) is right there where the action is. Other features include
* an article by Eddie Powell (Fladgate Fielder) on the latest failed attempt to register the smell of ripe strawberries (right) as a Community trade mark;
* "Good Vibes From Canada", a piece on confusion arising even where there is a substantial difference between the different products on which allegedly confusing trade marks are used [this is by Daniel S. Drapeau of Ogilvy Renault, who coincidentally has a piece in this month's Copyright World too);
* John Halton (an associate at Cripps Harries Hall) summarises the threats to trade marks from death by genericisation.
The IPKat's March 2006 issue of Copyright World, published by Informa, has a cover story by Simon Chapman (right) and Dan Caunt (Field Fisher Waterhouse) on the challenges posed by digital rights management. There's also a welcome case note on the copyright/competition dispute between Attheraces and British Horseracing Board by Pat Treacy and Sophie Lawrance (Bristows) and a feature on the problems faced in Canada by online access to TV by Elliott Simcoe and L. Catherine Eckenswiller (left) (Smart & Biggar/Fetherstonhaugh).