Monday miscellany

Readers' comments. There was a bit of a kerfuffle this weekend over a reader's comment which was at one point erroneously thought to have been removed by the blog's moderators in the exercise of some heavy-handed censorship. As it turned out, it was the reader who posted the comment who actually withdrew it. Since some people have questioned whether this can be done, this Kat offers this link by way of official guidance from Google as to how anyone with a Google Account (and that seems to be most people, these days) can delete any comment that they have previously posted on the IPKat or any other Blogger-powered weblog. The guidance also reminds readers (and blogmeisters) that comments can't be edited: if you want to change the text of a comment, you can withdraw it and post a fresh one; the fresh comment will however bear the time of the later post so, if you want readers to know when the unedited version of the comment was posted, it's best to mention that expressly in the revised post. Hope this helps!

News of a friend.  This Kat was delighted to learn that our former guest Kat Stefano Barazza, currently a Lecturer in Law in the Faculty of Business and Society at the University of South Wales, is now involved in the teaching of a tailored Masters programme for staff at the United Kingdom's  Intellectual Property Office, delivered directly to the IPO's door in Newport (immortalised by the parodic "Newport State of Mind", here). Stefano is also a permanent member of the PatLit blog team.  It's good to know that guest Kats can be so productively recycled, adds Merpel.

Korea combines examinations.  Via the ever-vigilant Chris Torrero (Katpat!) comes news, via the European Patent Office's Patent Information News (4/2014), that the Korean Patent Office (KIPO) has introduced a combined examination procedure for applications for several different intellectual property rights at the same time. As this piece explains:
"Under this new procedure, applicants may apply for a patent, utility model, design and trade mark for the same product by requesting a 'collective package examination'. In order to qualify for the collective examination, all applications must relate to a common product. Also, there may not have been a first office action yet for any of the applications. For patent and utility model applications, a request for examination must have already been filed. KIPO is committed to completing collective examinations within a period of four months to one year after receipt of the request". 
Further details can be found in KIPO’s annual report on their website here. The notion of a combined search might seem strange to some, but the possibility of a single product having characteristics that would potentially qualify for protection under all four rights is very real. says Merpel, who encourages readers to submit some entertaining examples for readers' edification.

Lovers, not fighters ...
Around the weblogs. "Maelstrom in a teacup: IP professions should be lovers not fighters" is the enigmatic title of Mark Anderson's most recent post on IP Draughts, in which he lists the eight different professions that handle one sort of intellectual property work or another in the UK and speculates with regard to prospects for cooperation and -- dare one say the word? -- merger. Meanwhile, Barbara Cookson on SOLO IP has been chronicling trade mark attorney's Sally Cooper's change of professional work style in a mini-series that so far spans two posts (here and here). Over on Class 46, Hanne Weywardt (Njord, formerly known as MAQS) guests an analysis of a recent piece of Danish Community trade mark litigation involving the V2 tobacco mark, in which an application for injunctive relief and a claim on the merits were given quite different different in terms of stays pending the outcome of OHIM proceedings.

You know where you can stick it ... The current must-have accessory is, this Kat has been advised, a selfie stick.  Unconvinced, since he has never been a great one for taking selfies, this Kat notes a recent feature on the Guardian website (via Eleonora -- Katpat!) about the provenance of the selfie stick, which looks like the fruit of years of patient toil on the part of Quik Pod patentee Wayne Fromm.  The article concludes
" ... Fromm stands a good chance of being remembered as “the man who invented the selfie stick”, not least because he’s the man saying that he did so. However, as he admits, people had stuck cameras on poles for years before him. Which raises the question, is a selfie stick really something you can invent? “In hindsight, it’s a simple idea,” Fromm admits. “But if you look at anything – a shoe horn, shoelaces – there’s nothing that wasn’t created by somebody … If it were not for my work over the 10 years, today’s selfie stick would not exist”".
As usual with patents, the art is not in the idea but in its mode of execution.  Readers will no doubt be dredging up all sorts of patents, utility models and registered designs for selfie sticks, but what excites Merpel more than that is the search for a more dignified, less informal term for the product than "selfie stick". Can readers oblige?

Delete unread!  The IPKat's sidebar poll last week on seasonal e-greetings circulars attracted 278 responses and their message was clear: readers of this weblog do not appreciate receiving email greetings circulars and generally delete them without even reading them.  This poll was prompted by the flood of email circulars received by this Kat over the end-of-year holiday period, many arriving from law firms of which he has never heard and with which he has had no dealings, addressed to "Dear Sir/Madam" (or some variant on this theme) and with a current lists of fees and charges attached.  Be that as it may, the full results were as follows:

When you receive an emailed Season's Greetings circular, do you ...
* print it out and display it for everyone to see? 4 (1%)

* email the sender to say "thank you" and to reciprocate the greetings? 38 (13%)
* add the sender's email to you own Season's Greetings mailing list? 18 (6%)
* delete it without reading, along with Out of Office messages and other junk? 230 (82%)
The message is plain, says Merpel: why annoy people by sending them more e-junk when you can find ways of wishing them well in a far more personal and meaningful manner?

New journal.  This Kat's friends at Oxford University Press have just announced the launch of a new title, the Journal of Cybersecurity -- a journal on a subject that overlaps the margins of intellectual property law and practice  According to the publishers, this journal
"...  publishes accessible articles describing original research in the inherently interdisciplinary cyber domain. [It] is premised on the belief that computer science-based approaches, while necessary, are not sufficient to tackle cybersecurity challenges. Instead, scholarly contributions from a range of disciplines are needed to understand the human aspects of cybersecurity. [It] provides a hub around which the interdisciplinary cybersecurity community can form [and] is committed to providing quality empirical research, as well as scholarship, that is grounded in real-world implications and solutions". 
This new journal is now accepting submissions for publication.  If you are interested, you can get further information here.  Please don't send your articles to the IPKat!
Monday miscellany Monday miscellany Reviewed by Jeremy on Monday, January 12, 2015 Rating: 5


  1. Thank you for the excellent reminder vis a vis Google accounts and posting.

    (and yes, I am one of those that does not have a Google account to post)

  2. For quite some time, now, even academic works make reference to websites, which are just as ephemeral as overhearing a spoken utterance. For this reason (although academically it is rubbish), authors testify to a date of accession to the website. What about a text that is no longer available (withdrawn)? In practice it means that the author can only appear as a witness to a statement from a given date, without being able to testify to the precise wording.

    'Ah', you will say, 'our academic work only uses permalinks'. To that I can only say 'blah!' -- check the academic output yourselves.

    The only way that one can be sure and give some resemblance of proof of content is to go from weblog to personal log: make screenshots as you go and devise a systematic way of keeping them. Personally I find it more practical to update Word documents with the latest entries in some discussion that I follow, and that I did with the Google avatar posting ('Mr. Cooper' to you, apparently). And from the entries from readers who suddenly discovered that the text had gone I can see approximately when the removal took place. But I have the original text, and so could you. The rule in all dealings with information from the web is “keep it when you see it; it will either be gone the next time, or you cannot find it”.

    Generally, I detest anonymous postings and revisionist removal of content. It reminds me too much of the Big Soviet Encyclopedia (sorry, precise reference not to hand).

    Kind regards,

    George Brock-Nannestad


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