Friday fantasies

The Blue-Spotted Australian Mist
Francis Gurry Lecture 2014. "IP in transition: desperately seeking the Big Picture” is the title of this year's Francis Gurry Lecture, which is to be delivered, hot and spicy, by IPKat blogmeister Jeremy.  The lecture will be delivered in Melbourne (12 November), Sydney (17 November) and Brisbane (18 November), courtesy of the Melbourne Law School and the Institute of Patent and Trade Mark Attorneys of Australia [there you are, says Merpel: who dares to say that courtesy is a thing of the past, or that it is a commodity in short supply Down Under!].  Since this is the first time that the Francis Gurry Lecture has been delivered by a fictional feline, Jeremy promises to write it himself rather than crowd-source it to this weblog's readership. If you are in Australia or in its close vicinity, do come and join the fun.  He understands that, even though he isn't buying drinks for everyone, demand for places has been brisk and urges anyone who signs up, but then can't attend, to let the organisers know so that someone else can fill their seat -- at risk of having their names entered in the Naughty Book.  You can get a better idea of what this lecture is about via fellow IP scholar Andrew Christie's website here.  Oh, and since Australia is a fair distance from The Old Nick, Jeremy is planning to organise a couple of "come and say hello" sessions if you can't (or don't want to) hear the lecture but do want to say "hi".  Further details will be posted in due course. 

Final fling for limerick competition.  The competition to compose a suitable limerick, for which the prize is complimentary registration and a free lunch at next Wednesday's IP Round-Up conference for people who don't like patents, closes on Sunday night.  Many entries have been received, ranging from the witty to the woeful, and from people who have clung manically to the rules for writing limericks to those who consider that they only apply to other contestants.  If you've not yet sent in your entry, don't leave it till it's too late! 

Fordham: if you're seriously
interested in having IP fun
Fordham in transit again. On 8 and 9 April 2015 the popular and quite nerve-racking Fordham University International IP Conference returns to Cambridge, England, thus depriving many happy IP enthusiasts of their annual excuse for travelling to New York.  No details are available as yet. When they are published, they will probably be somewhere round here.  This Kat recalls that, on the previous occasion that this wonderful event came to Cambridge, it generated a big split in opinion between those who felt that being in New York was almost part of the conference's DNA and those who regarded the change of venue as an encouragement to participants to reflect at less speed but in greater depth on the momentous issues that fell to be discussed.  Either way, it should be fun [says Merpel, that's the F-word that appears in Fordham's slogan].

Better late than never! Merpel most embarrassed to confess that she has only just noticed this Consultation from the UK Intellectual Property Office, at was apparently published on 15 September 2014 and which -- horror of horrors -- closes on 27 October 2014 (ie this coming Monday, so you have only the weekend to respond). The consultation concerns the repeal of section 52 of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 (CDPA). This section currently provides that, where an artistic work is exploited industrially (ie large numbers of copies are made) the copyright period is reduced to 25 years.  This is now considered in breach of EU obligations, and so will be repealed (by a provision of the Enterprise & Regulatory Reform Act 2013, which has however yet to come into force).  There has already been a consultation last year at ( [this is a confusingly similar URL but refers to a completely different consultation] on the principle of the repeal.  The question now is mainly one of how long the transitional period should be. The NIPC blog has a good explanation of the background to all of this.  Merpel is grateful to ACID, whose website is launching a questionnaire of its own and which was the source of the alert for this topic. However, she is concerned that the ACID survey asks the question in a somewhat different manner: 
“Calling All ACID Members. Do you admire and support iconic designers and the integrity of design heritage? How long should those who have built their business models on the sale of unlicensed artistic works be given to adapt their business models following the change of law to protect these iconic brands and their official licensors?”.  
Merpel is concerned that the scope of the issue is much wider, and considerably more nuanced, than this.  The IPO Consultation is not addressed at “brands” and has nothing to do with whether a design is “iconic”.  What's more, the repeal of section 52 will affect all artistic copyright, including that relating to 2D works, and is not (as the ACID website seems to imply) restricted to pre-1989 3D designs for furniture and the like.  Be that as it may, if you wish to respond to the ACID survey, the deadline is TODAY.

Dinner with Dinusha? A 3D treat.  From Katfriend Dinusha Mendis comes news of "3D Printing: A Selection of Stakeholder Perspectives", a sweet little event that is coming up at Bournemouth University's Centre for Intellectual Property Policy & Management (CIPPM) on Friday 7 November.  Details of this event are hereregistration is here. The event is free to attend, but you have to pay for your optional dinner.

Around the weblogs. This Kat is a confirmed admirer of Intellectual Property Watch. Even though he sometimes finds himself at odds with some of its contents, he appreciates its professionalism. Not every blog finds room for discussion of plant variety protection, which is why this Kat was happy to see "Inside View -- the TPP's New Plant-Related Intellectual Property Provisions", here.  Elsewhere, IP Finance spots a chance to webinate with, among others, the man whom coined the term "open innovation" and a view of what looks like a new business model for monoglot journalists. Charles Colman's Law of Fashion blog addresses an interesting tale of parody when Chanel meets Ghostbusters, here. Charles, incidentally, has a bit of track record writing about parody: if you trawl through SSRN you may just stumble across his "Trademark Law and the Prickly Ambivalence of Post-Parodies", here. Finally, Katfriend Dorothea Thompson contributes a guest post on the 1709 Blog on Henderson v All Around the World Recordings, on the assessment of damages for copyright infringement in England and Wales after the coming into force of the IP Enforcement Directive: a good blogpost but, this Kat, thinks, a decision that is open to argument. He may write on it himself later, time and energy permitting ...

Friday fantasies Friday fantasies Reviewed by Jeremy on Friday, October 24, 2014 Rating: 5


  1. "What's more, the repeal of section 52 will affect all artistic copyright, including that relating to 2D works."

    Yes, in principle, but in practice most 2D works are already excluded from the effects of s.52 by article 3 of the Copyright (Industrial Process and Excluded Articles)(No. 2) Order 1989, specifically:
    "printed matter primarily of a literary or artistic character, including book jackets, calendars, certificates, coupons, dress-making patterns, greetings cards, labels, leaflets, maps, plans, playing cards, postcards, stamps, trade advertisements, trade forms and cards, transfers and similar articles."

    Does anyone have any good examples of 2D works that will in fact be affected by the change?

    Most 3D works are protected by design right, not copyright, so are also unaffected by the change in the law. The main category of 3D works that are protected by copyright is "works of artistic craftsmanship", which is why furniture is almost universally used as the example.

  2. Non-printed e.g. woven or embroidered patterns, tartans, engraved patterns?

    Printed matter not primarily of a literary or artistic character e.g. functional patterns such as camouflage?

  3. Dear Jeremy:

    There is this marvelous new thing called the internet that would enable the webcasting and archiving of your lecture in Oz. I think that they may even have already heard about it down there.

    Perhaps this will be done so that fanciers of felicitous feline fillips of IP philosophy can follow Merpel's peripatetic paw steps.

    "Break a leg" as they say in show biz - indeed three times, once for each venue.

    Best regards,

    Uncle Wiggily


All comments must be moderated by a member of the IPKat team before they appear on the blog. Comments will not be allowed if the contravene the IPKat policy that readers' comments should not be obscene or defamatory; they should not consist of ad hominem attacks on members of the blog team or other comment-posters and they should make a constructive contribution to the discussion of the post on which they purport to comment.

It is also the IPKat policy that comments should not be made completely anonymously, and users should use a consistent name or pseudonym (which should not itself be defamatory or obscene, or that of another real person), either in the "identity" field, or at the beginning of the comment. Current practice is to, however, allow a limited number of comments that contravene this policy, provided that the comment has a high degree of relevance and the comment chain does not become too difficult to follow.

Learn more here:

Powered by Blogger.