The United Kingdom's Chancellor of the Exchequer presents his budget this Wednesday 23 March, at 12.30pm. The IPKat will be otherwise engaged at that precise moment, but reminds readers who want to check on anything that affects intellectual property that Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs will be providing information on this page, and there is every possibility that juicy IP bits will be covered on IP Finance too. IPKat team member Jeremy's friends at Olswang LLP have their own budget blog too -- you can find it here.
ICANN) of the .xxx top level domain name (TLD) as the "progressive new home for adult entertainment online". The approval gives .xxx the same legal status as .com, .net, .co.uk and other TLDs. The new domain is administered by ICM Registry. While the .xxx domain will enable porno sites and other unsavoury cyberlocations to be clearly flagged and filtered, it will also provide another raft of registrations for cyber-speculators who will be swift to spot the potential for tacking .xxx on to any number of fashion, cosmetic and leisure brands that have overplayed the sexual content of their advertising and marketing content, while likely remaining slower to detect and deal with since they often be inconveniently filtered and difficult for the brand-based businesses themselves to access.
Llandudno Junction [population 7,000] office will help businesses and individuals in Wales become even more innovative [than ...?]", according to the Principality's Deputy Minister for Science, Innovation and Skills, Lesley Griffiths. According to a media release last Friday,
"The Llandudno Junction PATLIB, or patent library, will provide local access to patent information and practical assistance on a variety of Intellectual Property issues, including one-to-one consultations with Intellectual Property experts. The service is part-financed by the European Union’s Convergence European Regional Development Fund.
It is the first of a planned network across Wales and is part of the European PATLIB network.The IPKat thinks this is a lovely idea and gives it his blessing. Merpel wonders what sort of metric has been established for local PATLIB initiatives, but hopes that they're not going to be judged on instant results: innovation may happen in a flash, but there's a lot of need for facilities like this both before and after the flash of creativity occurs.
The Llandudno Junction PATLIB will complement the support available through the existing business support programmes such as Business Innovation. It will provide access to support for the development of the next generation of products as well as identifying and commercialising IP.
Businesses and individuals will be able to use the public access computers in the office’s public area, Y Bont, to make initial patent information searches and check on trade marks, design and copyright issues. They will also be able to book on to one of the regular patent clinics held by qualified and experienced staff. The centre also holds a supply of free literature on various aspects of intellectual property".
Sweet & Maxwell spring offer. The IPKat has long argued that subscriptions to many IP periodicals are far too expensive. Sweet & Maxwell's Spring Offer (below), with reductions of at least 30% per title, would appear to recognise that cost is a disincentive to subscribe, as well as an incentive to unsubscribe,
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The IPKat can't resist pointing out that not all journals have a deterrent pricing policy: his own beloved Journal of Intellectual Property Law & Practice (JIPLP) carries an annual subscription of just £582 for the print and online subscriptions combined -- and that's not much more than half the discounted cost of the European Intellectual Property Review. If journal articles are to be of value to readers and authors alike, they deserve a wide distribution. High pricing discourages this. Sweet & Maxwell's offer should be welcomed -- but it doesn't ease the burden of renewal next year.