Friday comes but once a week,
The day all readers take a peek
And check the list of days ahead
For "Forthcoming events", it's said.
The wise ones come from near or far
For conference and seminar,
For new ideas, stimulation,
So when you scan the IPKat's list
Of talks and courses -- not to be missed,
If they ask "how knew you that?",
Say "I found it on the Kat".
Cat Poet (above right) is one of a delightful range of cards available from Ganapati Studios here
Trade mark aspirations gone to pot. "High Hopes for Pot Trademark Protection Dashed" is the title of a Wall Street Journal piece spotted by the IPKat's observant friend Shabtai Atlow. Apparently the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office recently created a new trade mark category dedicated to medical marijuana, which prompted a frenzy of applications from pot dealers in the 14 US states in which the drug is legal for medicinal purposes. The marks for which registration was sought included CHRONIC, MELLOW YELLOW and TARTUKAN DEATH WEED -- despite possible issues of genericity or lack of distinctive character. Following the receipt of an inquiry from a Wall Street Journal reporter, the USPTO reputedly scrapped the idea (it's not clear whether this was a case of causation or coincidence). The official excuse was that registration of trade marks is only possible in respect of goods which may be the subject of interstate trade, or the Interstate Trade Clause justification for federal trade marks in the US gets in the way.
Around the blogs. The 1709 Blog, dedicated to all sorts of different bits of copyright, welcomes its first contributor from a civil law jurisdiction, Monika Bruss. This should help generate more, and better, debate on copyright and its somewhat problematic relationship with the public domain. Monika is the second recent recruit to the blog, following its acquisition of Aurelia J. Schultz earlier this year. PatLit -- the patent litigation blog -- is going to stay just that, following the results of its readers' poll. 67.8% of respondents said it should stick to patent dispute resolution, while just 19.5% wanted it widened to cover other IP rights (other respondents wanted it narrowed to litigation alone, excluding ADR). Australian Patentology blog is running a survey too, seeking opinions as to whether -- and if so to what extent -- people believe software patents should be granted. Click here for your (knee-jerk or carefully considered) response.
Bafana Bafana is a term that resonates in our hearts in much the same way as Vuvuzela resonates (still) in our ears: it's the nickname of South Africa's national football team -- but not for long, perhaps, if its exploitation as a trade mark for a range of clothing gathers momentum. Thanks, long-time reader Lee Curtis, for this link. Wonders Merpel, does Bafana Bafana mean (i) "Two strikers up front", (ii) "Sick as a parrot", (iii) "The Boys", (iv) "It's a game of two halves, Brian" or (v) "dyslexic bananas"?