For the half-year to 31 December 2014, the IPKat's regular team is supplemented by contributions from guest bloggers Rebecca Gulbul, Lucas Michels and Marie-Andrée Weiss.

Regular round-ups of the previous week's blogposts are kindly compiled by Alberto Bellan.

Monday, 19 January 2009

IP Superheroes: the competition results

With CLT's Thirteenth Annual Intellectual Property Law Conference just ten days away, on Thursday 29 January, the time has come for the IPKat to reveal the winner of the IP Superheroes Competition. Just to remind readers, the idea was that

"now that the fight against counterfeits and IP infringements has become one of the major issues of our time and Superman, Batman etc have failed to defeat the evil perpetrators, readers are invited to invent some new Superheroes who might just do the job".
There were lots of excellent entries (and some pretty dreadful ones too, but never mind ...) and we haven't been able to publish all of them by any means -- so here's a selection of the better ones:

From Colin Bell (Brabners Chaffe Street) came the HoffMan ("a combination of David Hasselhoff (not to be confused with Davidoff), his alter egos Michael Knight (Knightrider), and Mitch Buchannon (Baywatch) and Lord Hoffmann, creating the ultimate superhero)

Mary Smillie (Bird & Bird) offered ReggieRights ("ReggieRights fights to protect IP.. he's fit to counter counterfeiters, and injunct the enemy !"), hotly pursued by NoCopyKat (with his side-kick ProtectPuss) and ®ightsMan, a concept so awesome that it's surprising that the UK's Intellectual Property didn't come up with it first.

PatMan was nominated by a number of entrants, each of whom was chided by the IPKat, to no avail, to come up with something better.

Veteran IP reader Simon Haslam (Abel & Imray) came up with what he self-effacingly termed "lame names", which included: PatenTed (a cuddly new teddy bear superhero who is far more cuddly than the undead from the IPO.

Right: it's not enough to be Welsh. SuperTed he may be, but PatenTed is better ...

May look just a bit like SuperTed who also has the advantage of being Welsh), Bad Faith and the Nicked Marks (not another reference to Max Moseley) and the painful Soupe®Man (getting you out of a trade marks mess). A further outburst of creativity from the same source brought in InvenTed (brother of PatenTed) and TM (trademark mouse), brother of the world famous DM (DangerMouse).

From Phillip Carnell (CMS Cameron McKenna) there emanated a very topical reference. The Superhero could only be Andy Burnham ("the 50-year term-inator").

Penny Maplestone surprised the entire community of Kats by nominating Sara and Keith from the British Society of Plant Breeders Ltd, who "whether or not wearing their pants over their trousers, are relentless day in day out in hunting down those members of the farming community who fail to take plant breeders rights seriously". Indeed!

Hugo Cox (Penguin) has set up an entire I-Team: Captain Original, The Mighty Mark, Dr. Abstract and 3D Girl.

A magnificent competition entry, reading almost like a patent specification, came from an examiner at the European Patent Office who has disappointingly opted for anonymity. With a combination of wit and meticulous methodology he first created a taxonomy of the superhero, then gave examples of two different species, replete with biographical details. Alas, space does not permit the IPKat to publish his entry in full, or indeed to lay open the reasoning behind his suggested names (Superbarr and Superbarman). Suffice it to say that, within the dusty files and echoing corridors of the European Patent Office lurks a man who wields a subtle wit which may be wasted on merely examining patents. Merpel says, "I do hope he wasn't doing this during office hours ..."

Craftily camouflaging his promotional literature as a competition entry was Mark Elliott of Digiprove. Good try, Mark, but the IPKat had to disqualify you since he found a misplaced apostrophe in your email communication -- and the IPKat is unforgiving when it comes to misplaced apostrophes (other people's ones, that is).

The IPKat also received some humorous doctored digital images from Edward Smith and Louise O'Callaghan, both of whom will deserve honourable mentions for their entries which, for one reason or another, the Kats thought twice about publishing.

The winning entry, however, belongs to Tara Train. Even if the IPKat isn't sure even now whether it complies with the rules, it's fun, it comes with nice piccies and it goes like this (NB if you are averse to puns, read no further):
"Forget Aquaman. The true protectors of intellectual property are his ocean friends. Many animals play a role in ensuring that the valuable commodities in our increasingly knowledge-based economy are kept safe from misuse:

Law-ruses, being limited by their girth, are unable to play the glamorous part of our superheroes. Instead, they gather on icy shoals and decide how IP laws should be interpreted and applied. The sue-lions and polar bear-isters guide IP owners through complicated litigation. For a long time these animals alone were sufficient for protecting IP rights. Recently, however, pirates armed with new-fangled technology have begun to pillage and plunder vulnerable copyright works- particularly music. Help was needed.

It was received in the form of Trip the great white shark. Forty feet long with an impressive set of teeth, he sinks pirate ships with ease, tipping pirates overboard into a sea of litigation, in which the sue-lions are able to grab hold of the offenders and throw them ashore to face the law-ruses. Unfortunately, Trip, while effective, is often overly zealous. (Doesn’t he look it?)

The ying to Trip’s yang is the Public Domain dolphin, who is blessed with an innate sense of what are fair and reasonable uses of copyright content. While Trip protects private IP rights, the Public Domain dolphin maintains the ever important balance to allow the progress of creative culture".
Well done, Tara -- you win the first (and only) prize -- complimentary admission to the CLT conference. To collect your prize, please email the IPKat at the usual address and he'll link you to the conference organisers.

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