For the half-year to 30 June 2014, the IPKat's regular team is supplemented by contributions from guest bloggers Alberto Bellan, Darren Meale and Nadia Zegze.

Two of our regular Kats are currently on blogging sabbaticals. They are David Brophy and Catherine Lee.

Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Wednesday whimsies

More fun with functionality. The IPKat has received a prod from one of his regular comment-posters, who emailed him to praise the high quality of the readers' comments on this weblog [Merpel notes sourly: the readers' comments are the one bit we don't write -- and that's what gets the praise] and to suggest that we add a "five most recently posted comments" feature to the side bar.  After a little fiddling around with the html and a good deal of coffee, the Kats have managed to set this up, together with another gadget which lists the most heavily-visited (if not actually read) posts since this weblog went live in June 2003. At the time of writing, the most popular page in the Kingdom of the Kat, unaccountably, was this one -- which will become even more popular if people keep clicking the link.   Incidentally, the same two gadgets have also been added to a number of "IPKat-approved" weblogs (a list of these weblogs will be published early in January, when there's not much other news). You have been warned ...


CIPA -- or just the three muses?
Around the blogs.  Yesterday saw the posting of the tenth in the series of PCC Pages hosted on PatLit and prepared by Alaasdair Poore on behalf of the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys (CIPA).  This post deals with the new Patents County Court procedure from the point of view of a reluctant defendant who wants to make it as expensive and awkward as possible for the claimant to sue him under the new procedures.  Since even blog readers have a propensity to spend much of their time over the winter break eating puddings in front of a blazing hearth with their loved ones, the PCC pages are taking a winter break too and will resume on Tuesday 11 January 2011.   IP Finance has featured taxation twice recently: the review of proposals to improve the regime for the taxation of intangibles in the UK (on which the IPKat hopes to add a few words if conditions are favourable) and debt-stricken Ireland's removal of tax breaks for patent licence royalties.


Have you even been looking for an extra pair of IP hands? If so, or if you are a spare pair of IP hands looking for something to do, you may find something to interest you at IPHire, "a temporary agency for IP professionals, and here we are talking professionals at all levels - assistants up to senior advisors". As the site's masteminds tell the Kat, "When you are an employer, you should not only think parental or maternity leave, but also if you suddenly have a big project where you need extra help, but you know that the post will finish when the job is done, justlook here" -- and if you are a job-seeker, a newly qualified candidate or just looking for a new challenge and maybe want to have a European post on your CV, then please put your name in the database here. The hope is that as many of us as possible learns about this new initiative so that we can easily find each other should the need arise, and then all in the IP Community will benefit".  The IPKat applauds this initiative but reminds readers that it's only going to be of any use if people actually use it.  Since this Kat is currently receiving between six and 10 job inquiries a month, he's sure that the database of those seeking work or experience will fill up pretty quickly. Let's see if employers and those in need of extra help find it helpful.


IPKat team member Jeremy popped into yesterday afternoon's meeting of the (UK) All Party Parliamentary IP Group, in the House of Commons Dining Room.  He doesn't know if mince pies and wine are the only things the Mother of Parliaments ever serves, but by sheer coincidence it was mince pies and wine that were on offer on the previous occasion the same Kat visited that venue [Not good for the calorie count, sniffs Merpel, who suddenly wonders if the reason why the Germans and the Japanese are so successful is that their parliament is actually a Diet].  The high spot of the meeting was the unexpected and voluntary appearance of former IP Minister David Lammy MP, who looked a lot more relaxed and sounded a good deal more convincing than he ever did when he was the Prisoner of the Civil Service, whose guards shepherded him everywhere and dragged him away from even the choicest events before the IPKat could ask him any questions.  Well done, David, it was good to see your commitment!  Jeremy didn't fare terribly well with the other Members of Parliament present: one had never heard of this weblog and, worse still, another told Jeremy how good it was and recommended that he read it.  Still, it's good to see that the Parliamentarians are taking intellectual property issues increasingly seriously, showing a genuine willingness to learn as well as to lead.  This blog remains at the Group's disposal and this blogger wishes it well in its endeavours.


Looking for trouble? The IPKat's friends at Lexsynergy have been busily developing a new domain name dispute search engine (here). They tell him, with all due modesty, that it searches "a few databases" (the Kat counted nine) and that  "there are similar services on the internet" but then declare, a trifle less modestly, that "none that cover as many databases as ours". The searches do take a bit of time to be displayed on account of the format of each database searched. If you want to put it through its paces and tell Lexsynergy what you think, just email Daniel here.


Curious concept in search of a name.  It is now apparent that our lords and masters are happily entertaining a unitary patent for only those European Union countries which are prepared to engage in a spot of enhanced cooperation with one another: this would be a sort of Community patent that only covered part of the European Community.  The idea of pan-European concepts being trimmed down to apply to only part of Europe is not new.  As Antonio Selas has observed, we have a European currency -- the Euro -- which is the currency of only some Member States, and the Schengen rules on cross-border travel are also only operational for part of the EU, so why not patents too?  The big problem, as the IPKat's friend Filemot has tweeted, is that we don't have a name for it.  What then should we call the not-very-Community patent? Please email your suggestions to the IPKat here, with the subject-line "Not the Community Patent", and he'll organise a poll to choose the best one.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Apparently, according to the Daily Telegraph, a good name for the proposed unitary patent would be "Cameron's treason". (That blog post easily deserves the IPKat's first prize for "Bad Reporting of IP Matters"...just try counting the factual errors and logical non-sequiturs).

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