From October 2016 to March 2017 the team is joined by Guest Kats Rosie Burbidge and Eibhlin Vardy, and by InternKats Verónica Rodríguez Arguijo, Tian Lu and Hayleigh Bosher.

Thursday, 4 July 2013

More IP titles for your delectation

Research Handbook On Governance Of The Internet, edited by Ian Brown and published by the increasingly adventurous Edward Elgar, is almost the complete opposite of many an EE compendium. For while this Kat has frequently raged about the presumed Americanisation of some recent publications -- particularly in the field of IP economics -- where it is made to appear that the subject belongs entirely to scholars from the US, here's a book on a subject which is as American as apple pie, but where the contribution of Americans is very much in the minority. This Kat must confess that he has found governance of the internet to be an amusing wind-up subject at cocktail receptions and dinner parties at which Americans are present: their view, in general terms, is that the internet should not be governed at all and, if it must be governed, that task should be both conducted and supervised by the Americans. But that's another matter ..

What do the worthy publishers have to say about this title? The book's website reveals the following:  
"The internet is now a key part of everyday life across the developed world, and growing rapidly across developing countries. This Handbook provides a comprehensive overview of the latest research on internet governance, written by the leading scholars in the field.

With an international focus, it features contributions from lawyers, economists and political scientists across North America, Europe and Australia. They adopt a broad multidisciplinary perspective, taking in law, economics, political science, international relations, and communications studies. Thought-provoking chapters cover topics such as ICANN, the Internet Governance Forum, grassroots activism [note from Merpel: this has nothing to do with plant variety protection ...], innovation, human rights, privacy in social networks, and network neutrality.

Being a forward-looking guide for the next decade, this Research Handbook will strongly appeal to scholars and graduate students in the social sciences studying and researching internet governance, political scientists, economists, lawyers and computer scientists working on governance issues, as well as regulators and policymakers responsible for internet governance in national governments and intergovernmental organisations".
Does this book match the description? Yes, though this Kat, being a footnote fetishist, really and truly does not like to have to keep turning to the end of chapters in order to find references and sources. There's plenty of food for thought, and if you weren't convinced that internet governance was necessary before you read it, you may well not be convinced afterwards either, such is the spread of opinions.

Bibliographic data: Hardback, xi + 491 pp ISBN 978 1 84980 502 5; ebook ISBN 978 1 84980 504 9. Price: hardback £150, online price £135. Rupture factor: deceptively heavy. Book's web page here.


International Trademark Dilution, 2013 edition, has been put together by the charming, debonair and hugely scholarly Daniel R. Bereskin QC, a long-term Katfriend and one of the most pleasant folk you can ever hope to meet at the various conferences to which this Kat finds himself magnetically drawn.  Published by Thomson Reuters, this volume is every bit as charmless as the editor is charming: the cover is an anaemic white and has nothing printed on the back, the print fairly jumps off the page at you and there are no pretty colour pictures. Note to publishers: can you make the next edition -- for there will surely be one, given the excellence of the text -- a bit, well, sexier? It's bound to make you friends and boost sales in the long run.

But enough of aesthetics; what about the product? According to the book's web page:
"International Trademark Dilution is an indispensable new resource for trademark attorneys and in-house counsel who need to protect their clients' trademarks across multiple global jurisdictions, and likewise is important for scholars engaged in research into the origins and development of dilution law.

With 24 chapters authored by expert IP practitioners and academics, International Trademark Dilution provides analysis and explanation of the development, statutory implementation, and jurisprudential application of the concepts of unfair advantage, dilution, free riding, and tarnishment of trademarks.

This book includes chapters devoted to dilution law in the United States and European Union, as well as Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, India, Israel, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, Russia, Singapore, South Africa, and Switzerland [Good choice of countries, with which few would quibble]. In each jurisdictionally focused chapter, an IP expert of that country guides the reader through the process of qualifying a mark as “well-known” and obtaining protection for such well-known marks, using practical examples from that country's statutes and case law.

In addition to the global focus on protection of well-known marks across a variety of jurisdictions, International Trademark Dilution also contains chapters devoted to explaining the use of survey evidence in U.S. dilution cases [this is one of the best bits -- and maybe there will be a companion chapter dealing with survey evidence in the UK, following the survey revolution in the past year in the light of Interflora and subsequent decisions], and the intersection of freedom of speech / freedom of expression law with dilution protection. For example, Chapters 23 and 24 provide many useful illustrations of artistic and commercial expressions which, while potentially damaging a trademark, were protected in the European Union and/or the United States based on the fundamental freedom of expression".
On a personal note, this book is dedicated to the memory of Katfriend Charlotte Jones, who was managing editor of INTA's Trademark Reporter for some 40 years.  Charlotte put a lot into the well-being of the IP fraternity and it's good to know that her work has been acknowledged in this most appropriate manner.

Bibliographic data: Paperback, lii + 589 plus table of cases and index. ISBN 9780314619433. Price US$ 149.25.  Rupture factor: medium. Book's web page here.


The Changing Face Of US Patent Law And Its Impact On Business Strategy,  yet another publication from Edward Elgar, is edited by Daniel R. Cahoy (Associate Professor of Business Law, Pennsylvania State University’s Smeal College of Business) and Lynda J. Oswald (Professor of Business Law, University of Michigan Stephen M. Ross School of Business).  This book, unlike the one above, does have a pretty cover -- but the best stuff can be found inside.  It's a very up-to-date book, as the references to the late, little-lamented ACTA and the America Invents Act show.  According to the book's web page:
"Within the complex global economy, patents function as indispensable tools for fostering and protecting innovation. This fascinating volume offers a comprehensive perspective on the US patent system, detailing its many uses [and rightly so: too many folk are wedded to the fallacious and cynical view that the patent system has only one use, which is to enable its owner to litigate] and outlining several critical legislative, administrative and judicial reforms that impact business strategy.

The expert contributors to this book provide an overview of how the US patent system functions today and describe how recent changes affect firms and individual inventors. Topics discussed include the drivers of intellectual property policy; recent revisions to the patent application process in terms of the new first-to-file regime, inequitable conduct, and allowable subject matter; and changes to patent enforcement and infringement related to the Federal Circuit’s special role and post-grant review. Contributors address recent legislation such as the 2011 America Invents Act, which enacted some of the most significant patent reforms in decades.

This examination of the US patent system highlights some of the most important issues for business. It will serve as an important tool for both policymakers and business leaders, and will also interest students and professors of business and management studies, innovation studies and business law".
A book as short as this, and as contemporary, which denies the authors the benefit of being able to step back and view the subject in retrospect, gaining a historical perspective, is bound to be written at a fairly general level, but the contributors have worked hard to pin their writings to specifics rather than wallow in generalities: they are to be congratulated for that. This is a manageable book for the reader and can be recommended.

Bibliographic data: Hardback xi + 231 pages. ISBN 978 1 78100 784 6; ebook ISBN 978 1 78100 785 3. Price: hardback £75 (online price £67.50 from the publisher). Rupture factor: low. Book's web page here.

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