Wednesday whimsies

Legal Week -- or is that LegalWeek? -- has something of a penchant for IPKat content these days. Last week the Kats celebrated the fact that Annsley's food porn post, here, had made the big time by reaching the leading legal practice magazine. Now it can be revealed that Eleonora's selfie post has received a similar accolade, here. We're all naturally very pleased and we hope we can keep delivering content that is sufficiently appealing for mainstream publications to feel it's worthwhile visiting our little niche.

While on the subject of congratulations and felicitations, this Kat is delighted to learn the exciting news that Edward Elgar Publishing has won the Frankfurt Book Fair Academic & Professional Publisher of the Year 2014 award, which the company received from the Independent Publishers Guild at a ceremony last Thursday evening. The judges commended the company on its impressive sales growth in 2013, achieved on the back of a prolific publishing programme and its successful Elgaronline platform. The IPKat has quite lost count of the intellectual property titles from Edward Elgar Publishing that have been reviewed on this weblog. The company also publishes a series of Intellectual Property Research Handbooks, of which the most recent was Jacques De Werra's on IP licensing (noted here).  Other books in this series, of which this Kat is proud to be the series editor, are

Cody Foster: what the well-
dressed horse is wearing ...
Around the weblogs. The jiplp weblog features an instructive note by Jeroen Muyldermans (Altius) on what happens in reality when real-live businesses, in this case brewers, come to blows over the right to control a colour (in this case, blue). The 1709 Blog notes, among other things, a procedural nasty that has emanated from the Dataco v Stan James database right dispute: a (wait for it ....) an application by the claimant to re-re-re-re-re-amend their Particulars of Claim.  On Art & Artifice Simone Blakeney reports on the ongoing tale of alleged design thefts by US company Cody Foster. IP Finance carries a sad story by Mike Mireles about declining federal funding for innovation in the US and its impact on university output. Finally, Laetitia explains on Class 46 why the General Court found a figurative mark containing the word ZENSATIONS confusingly similar to the word mark ZEN for various healthy, cosmetic-y things and services: if you've ever wondered which Europeans would break the word "zensations" up into "zen" and "sensations", and which wouldn't, then this is your guaranteed night-time reading.

Bang & Olufsen's new product:
a musical sandwich toaster ...
Scandinavian -- but does it work?  Coming up next Wednesday, 12 March, is a seminar in the School of Law Seminar Series at the School of Law of the University of Glasgow: 'Extended Collective Licensing in Copyright: it's Scandinavian Design but Does it Still Work?'  The eminent Danish academic Jens Schovsbo (University of Copenhagen) will be giving this presentation.  The event runs from 3.30 pm to 5pm in Room 250, Main Building of the University (West Quadrangle), Glasgow, Scotland. All are welcome and [particularly Jens ...]. If you want to attend and need further information, if you want to say "hello" or if you are curious to find out whether his surname rhymes with "dalmatian" or not, email katfriend Andreas Rahmatian at

Bill and Ben: the Weed could
tell them apart ...
A day later, even though they don't look remotely like one another, Katfriends  Johanna Gibson (a leading academic at Queen Mary and herself a former Kat) and John Noble (British Brands Group) are speaking on  “Lookalikes – an unfair practice and unfair competition” at the London offices of Withers Worldwide LLP.  This is a Competition Law Association meeting, which means that online registration will close on Wednesday 12 March so, if you want to attend, don't waste time: just click here.

Arrangements for Deposit Accounts: details of the changes. Following on from Darren Smyth's post on 18 February regarding the change in rules for European Patent Office (EPO) deposit accounts, readers may not have spotted that the EPO has now published the details, including something of a motivation for the change:
"The administrative fee for insufficient funds in deposit accounts is being abolished. It was originally introduced to provide an additional incentive to use deposit accounts by offering their holders a lower penalty in case of late payment. The main reason for abolition is that the administrative fee overlaps with the additional fees and fees for further processing payable under Rule 51(2) and Article 121(1) EPC. Deposit account holders will in future have the same means of redress as any other users".
According to various parts of the Arrangements for Deposit Accounts and annexes, if the account does not contain sufficient funds, the holder is informed by post, fax or email. This might be a good reason to update the contact details since presumably a fax or email would allow quicker corrective measures to be taken -- if there's time. The details are here. A katpat goes to Stephen Turner for this information.

From our reader Yisroel Greenberg (katpat!) comes news that omeone has produced an intellectual property game, TrademarkVille.  As Yisroel explains, it's similar in concept to board games like Articulate or web games like Pictionary: you describe a thing without saying its name. However, in this case, you also have to avoid using any trade marked words or terms. As the game's web page explains:
"In the magical town of TradeMarkVille every uttered word is instantly trademarked by the King's wizard-lawyers and banished from language. People are forced to devise increasingly bizarre ways to express their thoughts. Ordinary communication becomes a puzzle, prose becomes poetry. 
Will a new sense of understanding prevail against the sorcery of intellectual property?"
Yisroel found this through a post on the gaming website Kotaku ("Anti-Candy Crush game 'trademarks' all of your words", here), and thought we might be interested in it.  This Kat is speechless; Merpel's lost for words ...
Wednesday whimsies Wednesday whimsies Reviewed by Jeremy on Wednesday, March 05, 2014 Rating: 5


  1. The words up for consideration carry the TM symbol and, in the "Guess What This Is ?" part, you seem OK if you run words together (so GHOST TM
    appeared and HAUNTSCASTLES was accepted) : if you separate words, you are told that most of the words you've come up with are banned - so for nerds there's the fun of checking these against the database of the US Trademark Office (as the developers are based in the US) but with the proviso they've carefully said terms are "trademarked" so (of course) may not be registered trade marks .........

  2. TrademarkVille [ also accepts rubbish : it shows you a STAR TM and you type CELEB (short for celebrity) and it wants you to try again as someone else already typed CELEB - you type CELUB and it's happy : not such a fun game after all !

  3. It seems that it considers any word used in a previous answer to be "trademarked" within the game. (Going from the description at least, I can't use facebook login on the work computers, don't have a twitter account, and my phone had an unfortunate encounter with the sink this morning!)


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