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.

Monday, 12 September 2011

Monday miscellany

Plants and steak ...
Do you like plants with your steak stake? If so, you'll be pleased to know that the European Commission invites stakeholders to register for the EU Plant Variety Rights Conference which takes place on 11 October. According to the rhubarb rubric
"The Conference on EU Plant Variety Rights in the 21st Century aims to gain a clear view on the position of the various stakeholder groups with regard to the recommendations made in the evaluation report. 
The subject is of growing importance [The Department of Unintended Funnies obviously gave this one its blessing] in light of the modern society's dual challenge of feeding a growing world population at a time when the globe experiences climate changes that will inevitably impact agriculture and livelihoods. New and improved plant varieties are pivotal [This Kat has never seen a plant variety pivot at all, though he has read all about Triffids] in ensuring better yields and adaptability to changing climatic and environmental conditions, thereby contributing to long-term food security. 
In addition, biological diversity is an essential source of material for breeding crops. Intellectual property rights, such as CPVR, foster the investment environment in the research and development of new and improved plant varieties to the benefit of farmers and society in general.
For further information click here. To register for the conference (deadline 30 September) click here


All Black sheep
While the rest of New Zealand has been getting excited by the Rugby World Cup 2011, the IPKat's friend and unashamed IP enthusiast Elena Szentivanyi (Henry Hughes Patent and Trade Mark Attorneys) was quite properly more interested in the news that the Trade Marks Amendment Bill was read for the third time -- and passed. Royal assent is expected in the next couple of days.  This momentous news may have those who have been busily participating in New Zealand's main preoccupations: cheering on the All Blacks and rearing sheep.  An update on this very development can be found on the Henry Hughes website here.


IFRRO calls for orphans to be managed.  If rearing sheep requires good management skills, does the same apply to orphans? Not real human orphans, but orphan works, we should explain.  A neat little piece on Intellectual Property Watch explains:
The International Federation of Reproduction Rights Organisations (IFRRO) has submitted comments on the proposed European Union directive on orphan works, which aims to increase legal certainty for use of creative works whose copyright holders cannot be found. The group, which represents collective management organisations, authors and publishers, called for collective management and licensing for orphan works. 
“Orphan works should be administered through collective management and licensing ... IFRRO members already have experience from administering uses of such works. Regulation and establishment of conditions for uses of an orphan work should be as decided by authors and publishers of the categories of works concerned. In accordance with the principle of subsidiarity ['subsidiarity' is a magic word, often invoked by anyone who wants to get on with their business -- or someone else's -- without all those worries about meddlesome European laws getting in the way], the Directive should be without prejudice to the right of Member States to implement different solutions at national level”.
The IPKat would have been surprised if IFRRO had called for anything else. Organisations involved in the collective management of copyright works don't have many areas into which they can export their expertise, and this happens to be one of them.


Phone hacking has taken a back seat in the United Kingdom pecking order of hot topics to debate. In its prime, this topic gained sufficient momentum to result in the closure of a famous newspaper after 168 years in print (see earlier Katpost here).  Now it has dropped down the rankings, somewhere below some miserable financial figures and sundry sports and weather events.  If you pine for the blanket coverage and like something with a little wit, the Rebekah Brooks Song, thoughtfully forwarded by one of our more discerning readers, might just bring a smile to your face.

1 comment:

Guy said...

Sunflowers can be said to pivot. They turn their bloom during the day so that it always faces the sun if it is shining. Hence the French name for the plant 'le tournesol'.

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