Are you attending the International Trademark Association (INTA) Annual Meeting in Boston this May? If so, you're welcome to attend the Pre-Annual Meeting Reception in London on Tuesday, 16 March. This event is hosted by London-based law firm Rouse from 6pm to 8pm in its Docklands office. It gives first-timers and neophytes the chance to practise networking in a safe domestic environment --and without the benefit of jetlag -- before getting to grips with 8,000+ passionate trade mark practitioners, brand owners, service providers and even academics a couple of months later. If you're bound for Boston but fancy the Pre-Event, email the ever-helpful and charmingly alliterative Hayley Hill and let her know.
The vigilant Chris Hemingway (Bailey Walsh & Co. LLP) wrote to the IPKat on 1 March to draw his attention to the fact that the European Patent Office's extension agreement with Montenegro entered into force on that day, but the EPO hadn’t updated application form 1001to include the new designation. He adds, "I know it’s a minor point, as all states are now automatically designated unless the relevant fees aren’t paid within 6 months of publication -- but still I’m surprised the EPO haven’t changed the form to avoid confusion". Checking form 1001 today, the Kat can verify that this is still the case. Merpel's Meaningless Statistic of the day: there are 95.38 Montenegrins for every person employed by the EPO.
Enthusiasts of the law relating to the prolongation of the term of granted patents through supplementary protection certificates (SPCs) and paediatric extensions may recall that The SPC Blog held a seminar on that topic this past January. Not everyone who wanted to attend was able to do so, not least because the sudden snowstorm that beset London prevented many registrants from making the journey. Anyway, the good news is that a three-page summary of the seminar is now available for anyone wishing to read it. Details here.
A word of congratulation to the jiplp weblog, which has quietly crept up to the 200 mark for its email subscribers, possibly on the strength of the series of Friday posts on how to write better IP articles, case notes and the like -- posts that seem guaranteed to stir the blood of every true pedant. You can view the jiplp weblog here.
Here's something for readers to gnash their teeth about. According to Mashable (via the IPKat's old friend Lee Curtis) Google has landed a US patent for location advertising. According to the specification,
"The usefulness, and consequently the performance, of advertisements are improved by allowing businesses to better target their ads to a responsive audience. Location information is determined (or simply accepted) and used. For example, location information may be used in a relevancy determination of an ad. As another example, location information may be used in an attribute (e.g., position) arbitration. Such location information may be associated with price information, such as a maximum price bid. Such location information may be associated with ad performance information. Ad performance information may be tracked on the basis of location information. The content of an ad creative, and/or of a landing page may be selected and/or modified using location information. Finally, tools, such as user interfaces, may be provided to allow a business to enter and/or modify location information, such as location information used for targeting and location-dependent price information. The location information used to target and/or score ads may be, include, or define an area. The area may be defined by at least one geographic reference point (e.g., defined by latitude and longitude coordinates) and perhaps additional information. Thus, the area may be a circle defined by a geographic reference point and a radius, an ellipse defined by two geographic reference points and a distance sum, or a polygon defined by three or more geographic reference points, for example".The IPKat is hoping that this turns out to be a spoof ...