Tuesday tiddlywinks

European Patent Office (EPO) latest.  There have been further developments in the saga of the continuing troubles of one of Europe's most important institutions.  As Merpel reported last night, the EPO's Enlarged Board of Appeal has written to seek the Administrative Council's intervention to protect its judicial independence, while a partner in the hugely respected German law firm of Bardehle has written to express his disquiet.  More news is expected and this blog will bring it to you, with suitable comment, when it can. In the meantime, if you wish to make your own feelings known, there's still time to write to your country's representative on the Administrative Council before it meets later this week. You can find out who he or she is by clicking here.

"It is interesting to read the reports and comments on IPKat regarding the stand-off between the staff and the management of the EPO", writes a feline-friendly correspondent, who adds:
"Staff elections were held at the Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market (OHIM) on 25 and 26 November 2014 and that, as a result, a newly-constituted Staff Committee was formed on 3 December 2014 in which the Brussels-based U4U trade union has a majority. U4U campaigned on a slogan of change and a manifesto of challenging those management policies which reduce morale, efficiency, quality of work and worsen the working conditions of staff. The election result is likely to be seen by many as signalling dissatisfaction among a majority of staff and a call for greater consultation of staff by the management. A German lawyer, Gregor Schneider, is Chairperson of the new Staff Committee and Marco Paolacci, an Italian lawyer, is Deputy Chairperson. Both are U4U members".
The IPKat, who is a great admirer of OHIM and its staff even though he feels obliged to chastise them from time to time, hopes that the two sides will work together in a spirit of goodwill and cooperation, and that they will display a model of mutual respect that the European Patent Office can be encouraged to emulate.

Around the weblogs. A couple of posts from IPKat blogmeister Jeremy can be found lurking on the 1709 Blog.  One routinely reports on Madagascar's forthcoming commitment to the two WIPO Treaties of 1996 and innocently asks if that island -- the seventh continent according to some opinions -- ever received any financial benefit from the movie series with which it shares its name.  The second toys with the idea that men and women might not be given the same length of post-mortem copyright protection for the works they author. On Class 46, Nikos Prentoulis reports that the financially hard-pressed Cyprus Airways, the country's national air carrier, has assigned its portfolio to the Cypriot government. Nikos asks some searching questions about this move, in terms of practice and principle. On the same blog, Tomasz Rychlicki reviews a Polish tussle between the owners of the NETTO and NETO marks: it was plain that only one was going to survive -- but which?

Scams are back. This Kat received, via fellow 1709 Blogger Ben Challis, the following example of an audacious and indeed outrageous scam.  He very much hopes that the perpetrators of this roguery will be zapped with the full force of whatever law comes to hand. In the meantime, he would dearly like to have the chance to speak to whoever in Raiffeisenbank is responsible for allowing this scammer's account to be opened and to ask what sort of check was made to establish the credentials and the bona fides of the purported organisation. Meanwhile, please be vigilant and, if you have small and/or vulnerable clients who are in CTM mode, warn them instantly, please.

Tuesday tiddlywinks Tuesday tiddlywinks Reviewed by Jeremy on Tuesday, December 09, 2014 Rating: 5


  1. The IBAN identifies an account in Bosnia.

    Good luck!

  2. The trick is to open the account not in the name of OHIM organisation, but to indicate this on the invoice. This trick is posible because ONLY the IBAN is relevant for the payment, whateveyou inficate as the beneficary. This is a misconstruction in the SEPA system.

  3. The name and address of the bank can befound via this website
    which identifies the bank concerned as
    Raiffeisenbank D.D Bosnia/Hercegovina,
    Danijela Ozme 3
    71000 Sarajevo

  4. One of our clients received similar but with EPO branding. Same bank in Sarajevo. Have forwarded a copy to IPKat to publish for information. Have also informed EPO.

  5. The problem is that these scams can work. I had a new client who received an invoice for the "registration fee" the day after publication of his UK trade mark. The EUR1500 was to be paid to an account in Bratislava by Western Union. Being an eager and dutiful soul, and a man of action to boot, he made the transfer immediately. Luckily he then received our warning email the same day, and was able to stop the Western Union payment in time. I learned two things from this: firstly to warn clients well before publication and secondly that the world of IP is so alien to some people that they will believe the most unlikely things.


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