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.

Friday, 15 April 2011

Friday fantasies

Friday is Forthcoming Events Day!  Please remember to check out the IPKat's  Forthcoming Events page for details of all those exciting conferences, seminars. speeches ...


Huffington Puffington ...
"Huffington Post Is Target of Suit on Behalf of Bloggers" is the title of this piece, which a number of readers have kindly forwarded to the IPKat.  The excitement is all about the multi-million dollar lawsuit filed in a United States District Court in New York earlier this week on behalf of "thousands of uncompensated bloggers". Led by Working Life blogger Jonathan Tasini, the 9,000+ bloggers seeks at least $105 million in damages in an action which raises significant unsettled questions about the rights of writers in the digital age. Tasini is quoted as saying:
“The Huffington bloggers have essentially been turned into modern-day slaves on Arianna Huffington’s plantation. It’s very important to understand the hypocrisy here. We are going to make Arianna Huffington a pariah in the progressive community.”
The Huffington Post has become an attractive target for people seeking compensation for unpaid blogging after AOL purchased the site for $315 million earlier this year in a deal which "enriched Ms Huffington and many of her business partners, much to the dismay of people who had worked for the site when it was just a start-up".  This old Kat met Arianna in their student days when she was active in the Cambridge Union; he suspects that she is one of the few people upon which he failed to make any impression whatsoever.


A question of distance.  A reader has emailed the IPKat to ask: "I am interested to locate an online distance learning module especially for the Asian market. Can you please advise? Many thanks".  The Kat isn't so familiar with such models that he can confidently recommend any, but he thinks he has some readers who may be able to help him.  Can you?


No room at the top for Room at the Top?  The IPKat thanks his many readers who sent him this link to the news that a new BBC dramaticisation of John Braine's classic 1950s novel, Room at the Top, has been pulled following the sudden discovery of an unspecified but definitely embarrassing copyright problem.  The IPKat is naturally sympathetic to not only the programme's producers and cast but also to the great British viewing public which will be deprived of the chance to meet one of the least pleasant characters in British postwar fiction, Joe Lampton.  However, he couldn't resist the chance to comment that pulling this programme is a no-Brainer ...  Merpel adds, there might be an orphan work issue, seeing as Joe Lampton was an orphan.


Plant varieties for which
Macedonia is best known?
WIPO has been busy again.  A media release ("Madrid (Marks) Notification No. 191: Protocol Relating to the Madrid Agreement Concerning the International Registration of Marks") reliably informs the IPKat that, possibly following some horse-trading over its financial contributions, the Republic of Tajikistan is taking its rightful place among the Madrid Protocol nations with effect from 30 June 2011.  And that's not all. According to another media release ("UPOV Notification No. 110: International Convention for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants") the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia will be a UPOV-friendly jurisdiction with effect from 4 May 2011 -- also following some financial adjustments with regard to its membership of the international plant varieties community.  With World IP Day coming up in little over a week, can we expect more dramatic diplomatic moves, asks Merpel?


The May 2011 INTA Special issue of the Journal of Intellectual Property Law & Practice (JIPLP) is now available online. You can read the editorial here in full.

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