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.

Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Wednesday whimsies

Katnews 1.  It is with great pleasure that the IPKat informs readers that the third of his guest bloggers for the first half of 2012 has been appointed, with immediate effect. He is none other than Darren Smyth (pronounced "Smyth", right), a patent attorney who is currently a partner in UK-based intellectual property practice EIP and a one-time editorial board member of the Journal of Intellectual Property Law & Practice.  Darren will be posting on all sorts of things, we're sure, but Merpel has discovered that he has an interest in the various goings-on in the European Patent Office and that he quite likes design law too.


Katnews 2. It's a little while since Catherine Lee ("Cat the Kat") found herself roosting, if cats can be said to roost, in the intellectual property practice of UK-based international law firm Osborne Clark -- but it's only recently that Catherine has found a perch, if cats can be said to perch, on the firm's website. Anyway, Catherine is definitely there and she can be found in the firm's Thames Valley office. Her new details can now be found here.


Katnews 3. The IPKat has never formally recorded that Neil Wilkof, who is currently spending a month in India as a visiting IP expert and scholar, is now heading the trade marks department, the technology transfer team and the computer and internet law activity for his new firm, Dr Eyal Bressler & Co., Ramat Gan, Israel.  A man of great tact, versatility and talent, Neil is still also doing some work with his previous firm, Herzog Fox Neeman, of Tel-Aviv: you can check out his HFN web profile here.


Katnews 4.  Our resident Katonomist Dr Nicola Searle has won a number of accolades from readers who have been impressed by her ability to make economics accessible to intellectual property lawyers, her wide-ranging scholarship, her humour and her irresistible spectacles.  Yesterday Doctor Nic won another accolade, when her outrageously enjoyable post on IP valuation and footballers was selected by Legal Week for inclusion in the blog post section of that title's Legal Village.  This Kat thinks it's only the second time in getting on for eight years that any IPKat post has been mentioned in Legal Week. Well done!


The European patent reform
proposals: lots of noise, lots
of hot air -- but all along
the wrong track ...
The AmeriKat meowed at the IPKat yesterday with news that may indicate that the runaway unitary patent train may be slowing down a bit. On Tuesday, following the informal meeting of the European Council in Brussels, a Statement was published which sets out three immediate priorities of the EU: stimulating employment, completing the single market and boosting the financial economy, including SMEs. Under the second heading at point 4 the Council stated that:
"The participating Member States commit to reaching at the latest in June 2012 a final agreement on the last outstanding issue in the patent package."
The AmeriKat tells the IPKat that she does not want to read a great deal into the statement, but it's the first time she has seen something that appears to have given a deadline for reaching an agreement (or not) and. indeed, a deadline that is not absolutely imminent. What effect this statement has on the plenary session approaching in two weeks time, she does not know, but perhaps there is more time to affect the changes that are so desperately needed to make the proposed unified patent system workable.  Thanks to Steve Peers for bringing the Statement to the AmeriKat's attention.

PS This afternoon, at 2.00pm British Winter Time, British Innovation Ministrix Baroness Wilcox is giving evidence before the UK's House of Commons Scrutiny Committee. If you plan to tune in and listen to the session live via the streamed sound-cast, click here a few minutes early so that you can sort yourself out before the session starts.


PPS The AmeriKat also wishes to draw the attention of readers to the fact that the written submissions of CIPA, EPLAW and the IP Bar are now online on the webpage of the Scrutiny Committee here.


Free at last.  Annette Freeman has written to let the IPKat know that, after 33 years with leading Australian law firm Spruson & Ferguson in Sydney, she has relocated to London where she has launched (i) her own IP consultancy, Freeman IP and (ii) more interestingly from the IPKat's point of view, her own weblog, also called Freeman IP.  The IPKat wishes her well in her new surroundings and hopes to see her soon at the Old Nick  .... See and a blog at www.freeman-ip.blogspot.com The consultancy is offering a range of services to help brand owners manage their portfolios and IP attorneys to foster their business.

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