It is with great sadness that the IPKat has learned of the sad and unexpected loss of his friend Michal du Vall, who died of a heart attack last week while on a ski holiday in Italy. He was just 60. Michal, Vice-Rector for Human Resources and Financial Management at the Jagiellonian University, Cracow, was a genuine intellectual property enthusiast. This Kat first met Michal at a truly appalling intellectual property conference in Sofia, in what was then Communist-governed Bulgaria. Over a refreshing beer or two it became apparent that here was a man with a mind of his own, constructively critical but always in a kind and gentle way. He was a man with whom it was always easy to have a discussion but well-nigh impossible to pick a fight. The Kat's condolences go to Michal's wife Barbara and his two children. May they be spared to see only happiness in future. Merpel notes that Michal is the second leading light in Polish intellectual property circles to have passed away early; it is not so long since we lost Berenika Depo, whom we still remember with respect and affection.
here, this Kat chanced to comment on the fact that the case in question was not yet available on the BAILII website. Well, it is now: you can access it, free of charge, just here.
recent European ruling on the communication of free dental music. Not surprisingly, since Howard is quite long in the tooth, this is not his first brush with tooth-related topics: back in February 2010 he waxed lyrical over the false report of Gordon Lightfoot's death, which broke while the latter was on his way back from the dentist. Meanwhile, over on the jiplp weblog, Herbert Smith's Joel Smith, Rachel Montagnon and Anna Gibson write on another recent European ruling and explain that Red Bull can't sue a canning plant for trade mark infringement when it is commissioned to can drinks for its clients but does not sell anything to the public. With the 2012 UK budget coming out next week, this Kat's friends at Olswang LLP are gearing up The Olswang Tax Blog. If there are any major announcements concerning IP, they'll be posted on the Tax Blog before they appear on this one.
post earlier this week about the pub called The Hobbit, which was coming under legal attack from the owners of the trade mark and merchandising rights in the cute little fellows, has generated a large postbag and a huge number of links. It seems that the naming of places of refreshment after Tolkien's greatest creation is almost a national obsession. Could it be, perhaps, because so much of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings consists of eating, drinking, talking about food, the power of food and so on. Representative of the links received is this one from long-term blog-reader Lee Curtis (katpat!) on The Hungry Hobbit, a cafe and sandwich bar run by one Wendy Busst (real name, it seems). Ms Busst has offered to drop the aitch, amending Hobbit to 'Obbit, in the hope (should that be 'ope?) that this will placate the rights owners. Given the widespread practice in the British Isles of dropping the initial 'h', many people --and most youngsters -- probably say 'Obbit already, so this Kat doubts that this olive branch will prove to be anything more than a fig leaf ...