Monday miscellany

Another Titus has a tough time in Europe ...
Can Titus be lawfully convicted? Case C-5/11 Titus Alexander Jochen Donner is another reference for a preliminary ruling from the Court of Justice of the European Union. The IPKat didn't spot it coming till he saw Hugo's post on the 1709 Blog here. According to the UK's Intellectual Property Office, this case raises the following question which has been sent to the Court of Justice for a preliminary ruling:
"Are Articles 34 and 36 TFEU [that's the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union] governing the free movement of goods to be interpreted as precluding the criminal offence of aiding and abetting the prohibited distribution of copyright-protected works resulting from the application of national criminal law where, on a cross-border sale of a work that is copyright protected in Germany

* that work is taken to Germany from a Member State of the European Union and de facto power of disposal thereof is transferred in Germany, 
* but the transfer of ownership took place in the other Member State in which copyright protection for the work did not exist or was unenforceable?
If you would like to comment on this case, says the IPO, please e-mail before 24 February 2011 [so you have three days in which to get your thoughts together ...].  The IPKat has no idea what the background to this reference is: can any kind soul from Germany who happens to read this weblog give him a hint?  Merpel agrees: how can we know whether to have sympathy for the poor, abused copyright owner or the poor, accused defendant unless we know what they're up to?

The Golden Gate: San Francisco's answer to London's
elegant docklands, home of the Rouse INTA reception ...
It is most ungentlemanly to nudge anyone while they're having a drink, but there's no harm in giving them a nudge when reminding them that drinks are on offer. Anyway, the IPKat has been asked to give a nudge to any of his readers who qualify to attend the pre-International Trademark Association (INTA) drinks reception which is hosted by London-based law firm Rouse on Thursday 10 March from 6pm to 8pm in its lofty Docklands perch. Says Rouse: "Everyone is welcome, whether they are attending this year's INTA Meeting or just looking to learn more about the event and what it has to offer".  This event is hosted by Karen Fong, in her official capacity as Vice-Chair of INTA's Law Firms Committee. Sir Robin Jacob will grace the event with, no doubt, a paean of praise for some recent trade rulings of Europe's favourite court. If you're planning to come, just email Hayley Hill here.

Websites that may easily give the impression of being official when they're not are not the exclusive domain of patent and trade mark law.  The IPKat's friend Charles Oppenheim has kindly drawn his attention to the official-looking UK Copyright Service (here).  Like the UK's Copyright Tribunal, which sports a yellow copyright symbol (right) on its webpage, the UK Copyright Service embeds a similar device in its own logo -- and the page gives a very official impression indeed.  The IPKat is curious to know whether any readers have had experiences of using the copyright registration service offered by the UKCSS, and what they think of it.

Further to Friday's post concerning the telephone survey conducted by TNS-BMRB into designs -- this apparently being a genuine survey, paid for by the government -- the IPKat is getting an uncomfortable feeling that this survey is being aimed solely at respondents who registered UK designs in 2009. He very much hopes that this is not the case, since only 2,111 registered designs were granted in that year, while there are estimated to be well over 200,000 designers in the country of whom the overwhelming majority do not rely on the UK registered design right for their continued survival in the tough world of design (non)protection. If this suspicion turns out to be correct, this curious Kat is dying to know what function the survey responses might perform.
Monday miscellany Monday miscellany Reviewed by Jeremy on Monday, February 21, 2011 Rating: 5


  1. I've never used it personally, but the UKCS seems to provide a legitimate timestamping service at reasonable rates. Their website doesn't claim to be official and makes clear that the service they offer is also available from other organisations (though naturally they claim that their service is better!). I don't think they deserve to be lumped in with the likes of WIPD who demand thousands of dollars for doing pretty much nothing.

  2. This doesn't quite entirely fit here, but I would like to add a tidbit on the WIPO make-believe saga.

    The Italian attorney who initially represented the hapless applicant apparently under the provisions of Article 134(8) EPC in case R17/09 employs a logo on her letterhead which has a conspicuous resemblance to WIPO's former logo, and those of its forerunner organisations. It was even reproduced on EPO form 1003. Nice touch, too bad the PCT application number was wrong.


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