Monday miscellany

Freedom of Information. Last week the IPKat published a not inconsiderable and carefully reasoned rant, "Open Justice in Europe: IP Practitioners Speak Out" (here), in which it was reported:
"There have been recent attempts to obtain Her Majesty's Government's (HMG)’s written observations in two IP reference cases, the UK “IP TRANSLATOR” case [see IPKat/Ashmead post here] on the use of class headings in trade mark applications/registrations, and the German patent annulment case of Brüstle v Greenpeace which raises a question on the definition of the human embryo in Directive 98/44 on the legal protection of biotechnological inventions. Freedom of Information (FoI) requests on both have been declined with reasons in the generality only, that is to say regardless of the individual case details. HMG is prepared to acknowledge that written observations have been submitted, and that it is not obliged to keep its own observations confidential, but has a policy to keep them secret.".
The Kat can report that it is the Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys (CIPA) which has made the FoI request in the Brüstle case.  The Kat congratulates CIPA on this important initiative and hopes that it will persevere. It will be good to receive reassurance that other professional organisations in the field of IP are giving CIPA all the support and encouragement it deserves.

The Big Copyright Debate.  There's still time to register for next week's event (details here).  'Nuff said ...

Do you make, sell, buy, or use medicines? If so, you might just want to take note of Directive 2011/62 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 8 June 2011 amending Directive 2001/83 on the Community code relating to medicinal products for human use, as regards the prevention of the entry into the legal supply chain of falsified medicinal products.  It actually has something to do with intellectual property, though life's too short to spend time piecing it all together and wondering what it has to do with trade in counterfeits.  Recital Four reads as follows:
"The threat to public health is also recognised by the World Health Organisation (WHO), which set up the International Medical Products Anti-Counterfeiting Taskforce (‘IMPACT’). IMPACT developed Principles and Elements for National Legislation against Counterfeit Medical Products, which were endorsed by the IMPACT General Meeting in Lisbon on 12 December 2007. The Union participated actively in IMPACT". 
If any reader knows all about this and can tell the Kat and his readers what they need to know, that would be absolutely grand!  And can someone tell Merpel whether IMPACT has made, er, an impact?

Via the cheerfully enthusiastic Open Rights Group campaigner Peter Bradwell comes news that ORGZine has commenced a series of short, punchy pieces on what the UK Government should do with Digital Opportunity, the recent report of the Hargreaves Review. ORGZine promises "articles every day over the next couple of weeks" on this topic, and there will be one from the a certain member of this weblog once he gets around to it.

All the way from the European Patent Office's Boards of Appeal's Bill Chandler comes a reminder that those who wish to practise before that august office must first qualify by passing their professional examinations.  He writes:
"As IPKat readers already know, e.g. from here, the first EQE pre-examination take place on 5 March 2012. The deadline for enrolment was 27 June 2011, but candidates who enrolled might soon start wondering what the examination involves. Information on the main EQE page is fairly difficult to divine (it does not directly mention the 2012 pre-examination), but the "Download" section has a link to Supplement to OJ 3/2011, which gives the texts of the regulation on the European qualifying examination for professional representatives (REE), the implementing provisions to the regulation on the European qualifying examination for professional representatives (IPREE) and the instructions to candidates. 
Rule 10 REE says that the pre-examination shall test the candidates' legal knowledge of the documents referred to in Rule 22(1) REE and have questions relating to scope and allowability of claims, in particular novelty and inventive step over prior art, but also other requirements of the EPC. Rather worryingly for candidates, Rule 22(1) REE is the same list of documents that need to be mastered for the main examination.

Some idea of how the exam might look can be gleaned from the Mock pre-examination 2011, also on the main page. This has ten questions relating to legal knowledge and ten questions relating to the analysis of claims. Though the questions are similar to the previously published 2010 mock examination, the marking scheme is different. Each question has four answers that may be true or false. Within the group of four answers, the marks are allocated as follows:  0 or 1 right answer - 0 marks, 2 right answers - 1 mark, 3 right answers - 3 marks, 4 right answers - 5 marks. Best, then, to spend some time getting the fourth answer right!

In order to help practice this paper the ‘Centre d'Études Internationales de la Propriété Intellectuelle’ (CEIPI, for English speakers) is offering a new seminar for the pre-examination from 7 to 11 November 2011. It covers both the legal and drafting aspects and offers additional mock questions and a mock examination made up assuming the above structure for the paper. Details can be found here on the CEIPI site. CEIPI also offers a range of further courses for the EQE, details of which are given on the sidebar".
Says Merpel, the real test isn't actually passing the exams: it's working out how to take them in the first place!

"Moldovan Police Put End to Fake Newspaper Scam" is the joyous headline of an item in the most recent issue of the Petosevic IP News from Eastern Europe.  It seems that a few weeks ago the Moldovan police finally identified a network of infringers who had been illegally producing and distributing fake copies of Ziarul de Garda and Timpul, two of Moldova's leading newspapers [I knew that, sniffs Merpel ...]. The infringers allegedly intended to manipulate public opinion ahead of last month's elections by publishing negative articles about the pro-Western ruling coalition. Two suspects -- both presumably non-Western-leaning Ukrainians -- have been arrested and are believed to have acted at the behest of a political party. The head of Ziarul de Garda has urged the police to reveal the name of the political party behind the scheme, stressing that the fake newspapers damaged the reputation of the real ones and infringed their trade marks and copyrights. How terrible, quips the IPKat, that someone should have sought to use the newspapers for manipulating public opinion ahead of an election: what an awful thought!  Merpel is amused that here, for a change, we have one copyright infringement which is being blamed on a political party that has nothing to do with the Pirate Party.

Around the blogs.  The 1709 Blog today carries this fresh-as-the-morning dew account by the IPKat's friend David Brophy (FRKelly) of discussions at today's public consultation session on the state of Irish copyright law, with special reference to fair dealing/use.  Another piece on copyright, this time dealing with the interface of copyright, censorship and the manipulation of attitudes, has been posted on the jiplp weblog: it's by the provocative Christophe Germann, who would like some feedback before deciding how to develop his ideas further.  Someone who has taken his thoughts further is Itaru Nita, whose piece on the International Fund for Innovation follows some two and a half years after he first flew this kite on the IP Finance weblog.
Monday miscellany Monday miscellany Reviewed by Jeremy on Monday, July 04, 2011 Rating: 5

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