IP online masters programme
The IPKat has been overwhelmed by responses to his request for information about online Masters programmes for intellectual property law. Some responses dealt with courses that aren't strictly speaking online LLM IP, but the Kat is including some information on them too because it's useful and relevant to the needs and interests of many readers of this blog.
Right: distance learning - an opportunity for star pupils to shine academically
Ian Drew (Trade Mark Attorney, Davies Collison Cave, Australia) writes:
"There is a course which is offered by the University of Technology Sydney which is a Diploma in Trade Mark Law and Practice. I believe that the diploma may be studied online. I also believe that the course may be extended to cover other fields of IP and into a Masters degree. So I would check with UTS first.Rachel Dawson (Principal Trade Mark Examiner, Intellectual Property Office of New Zealand) says:
There are two other options which may be of interest. First I would check with Deakin University. Deakin offers most of its courses via distance education and has a very good commercial law school. I am not sure whether they have a LLM specialising in Intellectual Property. The second option may be through the University of Queensland. There is an organisation called the Australian Centre for Intellectual Property in Agriculture. I did my Masters of IP Law through this group, there was no particular focus on Agriculture. The group is headed by Brad Sherman of Sherman and Bentley fame .... I do not believe that it is offered online, but the delivery was intensive so the courses are taught over four days with a subsequent six week period for completing the assessment task".
"I did a postgraduate diploma in international copyright at King's while I lived in London. The materials were posted to different people around the world though, and the four seminars were voluntary so you could do the work remotely and just turn up for the exam in London.The existence of WIPO's courses is also mentioned by Christina Michalos (Barrister, 5 Raymond Buildings) and Adnan Baranbo (attorney at law, Damascus), while the Kings option is supported by Stine Helén Pettersen (London NW3), who mentions the strength of the faculty members of London's colleges.
Or there's the WIPO online course which is more of an introductory level of IP...".
The most enthusiastically cited programme is however the Edinburgh University distance learning scheme. 'Innovation Technology and the Law', which has six modules that concentrate on IP law, is warmly spoken of by Nicola Giles (University of Wales Institute, Cardiff), among others (including some of the IP staff at Edinburgh, who are readers of this blog). Practitioner Linda Wilbraham has this to say about it:
"I have just completed the Masters in Innovation, Technology and Law at Edinburgh University by Distance Learning. I was living in Canada when I started the course and finished my thesis when I returned to Scotland. It was brilliant course and I have now returned to work as an IP/IT lawyer in Glasgow".So now you know!
More on Febreze/Air Wick
Last week the IPKat posted a short note on Procter & Gamble v Reckitt Benckiser  EWHC 3154 (Ch) (available here) in which Mr Justice Lewison of the Patents Court held that the packaging of Reckitt Benckiser's Air Wick Odour Stop infringed Procter & Gamble's validly-registered Community design for the packaging of Febreze (a custom-designed canister surmounted by a trigger within a housing). Illustrations of both parties' products appear in the judgment.
Further comment was promised. The IPKat notes the following:
* The Patents Court was sitting as a Community Design Court.
* At para. 24 Lewison J says:
"There is little guidance from decided cases about how the Regulation is to be interpreted. ... since the Regulation applies across the whole European Union, it is desirable for there to be consistency of interpretation across all member states. Registration of Community designs is regulated by the Office for Harmonisation of the Internal Market (OHIM) and their decisions give useful guidance. But by the same token, decisions of courts in other member states can also provide useful guidance".At paras 58 to 63 Lewison J does indeed consider such decisions, these being from Vienna, Milan, Evry and Brussels.
* At paras 30 to 41 there is some detailed analysis of the "informed user", by reference to whom the protectability of a design is measured. The court examines UK and OHIM decisions and determines that there is no real discrepancy between them.