Wednesday whimsies

IMPORTANT NOTICE: today we are all Greeks. Earlier today the IPKat posted this piece on the current crisis facing the euro, calling on readers to suggest a new name to replace "euro".  For the avoidance of any doubt, the IPKat wishes to emphasise that the references to PIGS/pigs were not intended as a slight upon the Greek and Italian nations or any of their nationals. The IPKat stands shoulder to shoulder with the rest of his European colleagues in their attempts to resolve this perilous position and wishes them every success in speedily so doing.

The USPA: where else would one
go to buy one's beach towels?
European and Community trade mark watchers will probably know that an appeal to the Court of Justice has been lodged in Case C-327/11 United States Polo Association v OHIM. "It concerns the application of the Community Trade Mark Regulation", explains the UK Intellectual Property Office (IPO), in a vain attempt to make the appeal sound less appealing than it is. It's actually a fun case  in which the General Court held here that an application to register the word mark U.S. POLO ASSN. fell foul of the opponent's earlier POLO-POLO word mark, both being for textiles, bed sheets, pillowcases, beach towels and other items which, if this Kat saw them bearing the words "U.S. POLO ASSN.", he would have assume that they were the people the sheets and towels had been stolen from.  The grounds of appeal look so strong that, in the absence of any argument to the contrary, they do look persuasive.  Anyway, if you want to tell the IPO that it should advise the UK government to get involved, you have a little longer than usual  --  you can email Policy by 4 November 2011.

Around the weblogs. Art & Artifice announces the addition of Elizabeth Emerson (Olswang LLP) to its blogging team. Elizabeth has come to the law from an art background, since she holds two degrees in History of Art from the Courtauld Institute Meanwhile, over in the seemingly seedy world of European trade marks, Edith Van der Eede has been regaling readers of Class 46 with the latest tales of BUNGA BUNGA. Moving up a few classes, 53 to be precise, the design law blog Class 99 (no relation of Class 46, as it happens) has just been celebrating its 500th email subscriber by posting an article on reflections of the Polish Supreme Administrative Court as to the design protection potential of what appears to be a rectangular brick of ice cream.  Elsewhere, IP Tango asks how meaningful is the IP Memorandum of Understanding which has been struck between the United Kingdom and Mexico, and the Tale of the Octopus which has tantalised readers of PatLit for more than a year has now reached, in its 42nd episode, the point at which the parties may want to cost out the consequences of settling their dispute before the Patents County Court can.

Directors of the U.S. Copyright Office may come, Directors may go -- but the new Register of Copyrights Maria A. Pallante (right) is definitely filling her diary for the next two years. According to a media release from her office, she has now gone public by listing the priorities and special projects which she plans to tackle between now and 2013. Her 18-page paper articulates 17 priorities in the areas of copyright policy and administrative practice, as well as 10 new projects designed to improve the quality and efficiency of the U.S. Copyright Office's services in the 21st century:
"Rogue websites, illegal streaming, small claims, orphan works and library preservation are among the issues the Copyright Office will focus on through research and legislative support for Congress. The document also summarizes the work of the office in global policy, including U.S. trade negotiations, anti-piracy efforts and international discussions of exceptions and limitations".
Good luck, says the IPKat, who adds that Maria will have done pretty well to tick any of these tricky topics off her to-do list in just 24 months.

Laws may come, laws may go; some are classics, like the Venetian patent law of 14 March 1474 (about which the Kat will soon have something more to say), while others flash by and are rapidly forgotten [don't ask me which ones, says the Kat -- if i could remember any, they wouldn't be rapidly forgotten].   Anyway, the America Invents Act (AIA) is definitely flavour of the month, and not just in the United States.  The somewhat Eurocentric PatLit weblog has already hosted two of a series of pieces written by Faegre & Benson for the benefit of non-Americans who want to know what the AIA is all about without being swamped by detail. These posts are (i) "America Invents: what do litigators need to know?", here, and  (ii) "America Invents Act: New Opportunities for Challenging the Validity of US Patents", here.  And for those who like to combine their quest for knowledge with a little networking, the US Patent Reform Congress 2011 is looming large, being held at: the Millennium Hotel London Knightsbridge, on 18 November 2011. The IPKat reminds his readers that if they register here, quoting the magical VIP Code FKW82243PLL, they are entitled to a 10% discount against the cost of registration. Perhaps by the time we get through this we'll have a better idea whether we should still be urging the US to be more like us -- or whether we should be more like them instead.
Wednesday whimsies Wednesday whimsies Reviewed by Jeremy on Wednesday, October 26, 2011 Rating: 5


  1. The Deutschmark would be a good name for the Euro.

  2. Wasn't it a Kat who, way back when, once questioned the relevance of starting with Venice when trying to explain patent law? I'm curious now...

  3. Good to hear that you did intend your piece to be a slight on Portugal and Spain and their nationals :)


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