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.

Sunday, 7 December 2014

Sunday sweeteners

Two regular members of the IPKat's blog team (Jeremy and Neil) are in Munich, Germany, for the next couple of days, participating in the International Trademark Association's winter conference on the theme of "When Trademarks Overlap with Other IP Rights".  This weblog will do its best to bring the salient points to your attention via summaries of the sessions and subsequent discussions and via Twitter. Since no hashtag has yet been announced for this event, the Kat will be tweeting to #intamunich14 unless anyone tweets to the contrary.

This is not the time to hide ...
On the subject of Munich, readers of this weblog last week will be aware that this lovely city also hosts the headquarters of the European Patent Office, and that all is not well in that institution. Last week's posts on events in Eponia (or Banania as some people prefer to call it) here, here, here and here led to two significant things: first, visits to the blog were more than 60% up on the previous (fairly normal) week. Secondly, Thursday of last week was the first time the blog received more visitors from Germany than from any other country. The IPKat and Merpel very much hope that the situation will improve and that the Administrative Council, meeting in Munich this week, will either do something about it or will be called to account if they don't.

The UK's Alliance for Intellectual Property held a Big Debate last week on “IP is a Property Right”. Thanks to ACID's CEO Dids Macdonald we have received this link to this short report.  Adds Dids: "The design sector was well represented in the debate and the clear message to all parts of government is to work together to reduce IP infringement and give enforcement a higher priority. We need to ramp up the pressure to ensure increased understanding that IP doesn’t just enable businesses to keep on investing and create employment but gives consumers the British design originality and quality they expect".

Around the weblogs.  The 1709 Blog, which is devoted to copyright, has been busy of late. There's a guest comment by Andreas Rahmanian on copyright education in schools, a juicy CopyKat round-up from Ben Challis, and Asim Singh's take on the latest round of the French litigation between French commercial TV broadcaster TF1 and DailyMotion, dubbed "the French YouTube".  Michael Factor's IP Factor blog reviews an Israeli proposal for legislation to regulate the ethical conduct of patent attorneys, providing a framework for recognition of client-attorney privilege.  The jiplp weblog carries Matthew Dick's review of a General Court decision to invalidate the K-Swiss five-stripe Community trade mark on absolute grounds; another well-known mark that's struggling a bit is the Finnish LAKUMIX mark for confectionery, caught up in a battle between sweet-tooth giants Fazer and Panda, explains Tiina Komppa on Class 46.

A survey. The Journal of European Competition Law & Practice (JECLAP), published by Oxford University Press, occasionally carries features that are of interest -- or should be -- to the IP community. One such piece is "IP and Competition: A Survey of Developments in the Past Year" [Merpel's always happy to see "IP" ahead of "Competition" in the context of the European Union, where the reality is sadly the other way round ...]. The author is the distinguished Belgian lawyer and scholar Jean-François Bellis of Van Bael & Bellis, Brussels. According to the abstract:
"Updating the Technology Transfer Block Exemption and the accompanying Guidelines, the European Commission introduced a number of substantive changes during the period covered by this survey—without however changing the system altogether.

A number of cases were decided by the Commission and the Court of Justice on the enforcement of FRAND-encumbered standard-essential patents (SEP), with the objective of providing guidance on when injunctions sought by SEP patent-holders against licensees could constitute an abuse of dominant position.

The Commission adopted two additional decisions imposing fines on pharmaceutical producers on account of ‘pay-for-delay’ agreements".

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