Monday musings

This Tuesday 14 July, from 5.30pm to 7pm, Australian practitioner Julian Gyngell will be addressing an informal meeting of the IP Finance blog group on the subject "Phonewords and Finance". McDermott Will & Emery have kindly agreed to provide a venue in their City office at 7 Bishopsgate (here).

Several people have told IPKat team member Jeremy that they plan to attend this pleasant and informative event, for which admission is free, but he has yet to receive their confirmation. If you are coming, please email Jeremy here, today if possible, and let him know so he'll know how many chairs to put out etc etc ...

Every so often the IPKat gets asked about all those images he uses. Are they really copyright-free? No, they're not -- but some are supplied by readers (quite a lot of the cat-pictures fit into this category), others are (i) definitely out of copyright, (ii) probably out of copyright, (iii) taken by the IPKat himself, (iv) dug up from Creative Commons or similar licensed sources or (v) used on the assumption that they fall within fair use/fair dealing/ transformative use or other defences of varying degrees of reliability.

Above, left: this charming little fellow is just nuts about Creative Commons, which has licensed his transmission on this blog

But from now his task gets easier, since --thanks to his good friend Hugo Cox -- he has discovered a handy Google Image Search device that helps him root out images with Creative Commons or other tagged licence terms, as well as works in the public domain. You can read all about it on the Google Blog here.

When intellectual property academics and practitioners involved with learning and teaching get asked to teach 'some' intellectual property to students on programmes located in faculties other than law, the IP content is often part of a wider 'business law' unit.

Right: it's really cool to study IP-flavoured Business Law

If the students have already invested in a standard generic Business Law book, the odds are it will contain no mention of IP. This omission sends out a subliminal message that IP law isn't 'business law'. The IPKat's good friend Professor Ruth Soetendorp writes to the readers of this weblog:
"Your answers to the following questions (and comments) would be most welcome:

1. Should generic Business Law student texts include material on IP?

1a. If yes, what would an IP chapter cover?

2. Do you teach IP to students in faculties other than law?

2a. If yes, which faculties?"
Please email Ruth (and not the poor Kat!) here
Monday musings Monday musings Reviewed by Jeremy on Monday, July 13, 2009 Rating: 5


  1. Regarding the Google public domain search: such a system works only if spurious claims to copyright are not made by publishers. Otherwise, how are Google able to distinguish such images?

    For example, publications which reproduce substantial portions of, say, the plays of William Shakespeare still bear text asserting that "no part of this publication may be...reproduced...without prior permission of the author", which is, on the face of it, untrue.

    I wandered across the following paper on just this subject recently: is the Kat aware?

  2. Of course intellectual property is part of business law! Therefore, in principle, business law texts should cover IP, probably focussing on the transactional side.

    Commercial lawyers and transactional IP lawyers work in the same area, often in a single department.


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