Wednesday whimsies

Forthcoming events. Do please remember to check out the IPKat's list of Forthcoming Events, It's an ever-changing one, with lots of events that are either free to attend or which offer registration fee discounts to blog readers, students or other deserving causes.

One way of enjoying
a spot of privacy ...
Around the weblogs 1. The IP Finance weblog carries a second guest post by Donal O'Connell. The first, on the IP dimensions of selecting a supplier, received a lot of visits. The sequel, on IP risk assessment and management, should be even more popular. Meanwhile the 1709 Blog has been positively bubbling with activity of late. In an unparalleled fit of productivity Ben Challis has written on IFPI's Digital Music Report 2015 and the targeting by PRS for Music of live music and festivals, while Marie-Andrée Weiss, not to be outdone, explains the ramifications of Arne Svenson's controversial commercial exploitation of unauthorised and clandestine photographs of his neighbours [would he be instructing his lawyers if it turned out that his neighbours decided to do the same to him, Merpel wonders].  When is a dominant word element on a garment regarded as a genuine trade mark and when is it nothing but an embellishment? Manos Markakis considers this issue in light of recent Greek litigation on the jiplp weblog here,

Around the weblogs 2. This Kat has recently come across a Spanish IP blog, "Todos los derechos reservados" (here), authored by the enthusiastic Jacobo Santamarta Barral (right). It's not actually a new blog, since its archive stretches back to July 2014, but it may be new to many of this weblog's readers. So, if you enjoy IP and can cope with one of the world's most widely-spoken languages, why not give it a try?

Books books books.  The Journal of Intellectual Property Law & Practice's jiplp weblog is advertising three more intellectual property books for which reviewers are sought. Some years ago, the advent of the internet and its remarkable propensity for helping users store, identify and retrieve information -- whether free or behind paywalls -- was viewed by many as the beginning of the end for traditional paper-based law publishing. The sudden spread of popularity of e-books such as Kindle appeared to confirm this suspicion. However, printed publications have also benefited from the internet revolution. For example, targeted online marketing is far cheaper than old-fashioned envelope-stuffing and the blunderbuss approach of producing vast, heavy catalogues, and search engines guide prospective readers to the books which they might not even have known to exist.  Likewise, specialist websites and blogs can be used for helping to identify and quantify prospective readers and purchasers -- and, in the case of JIPLP -- for matching new titles with suitable reviewers and publishing comments about news titles while they are still fairly current.  So if you like the look and feel of real, three-dimensional IP law books, take heart: the medium is likely to remain with us for some time to come, largely thanks to the medium which has been predicted to kill it.

Google again.  The world's most powerful company has been in the news today on account of the European Commission's surprisingly belated decision to make a complaint against it for abuse of its market power. However, this Kat is concentrating on a smaller, less dramatic but no less interesting matter.  From Katfriend Catherine Pocock comes the following:
"While browsing the web I stumbled upon this new ‘anti-spoilers’ technology which Google is applying to patent. I thought this was an interesting technology in light of Google’s refusal to monitor content when it comes to copyright protection; I wonder where they draw the line in terms of privacy intrusion. ... 
New forms of protection
are needed against digital
age plot-spoilers ...
According to the Patent Application Abstract, the disclosure includes a system and method for processing content spoilers. The system includes a controller, a progress module, a determination module, a warning module and a presentation module. The controller receives activity data describing an activity performed by a first user and content data published by a second user. The progress module determines a first progress stage for a subject associated with the activity based at least in part on the activity data. The determination module determines whether the content data includes a spoiler for the first user based at least in part on the first progress stage. Responsive to the determination that the content data includes the spoiler, the warning module obscures the content data published by the second user from the first user and generates a spoiler warning. The presentation module provides the spoiler warning to the first user". 
For those who want to know more, they can consult Wired and Le Monde (in French). The patent application is here.
Wednesday whimsies Wednesday whimsies Reviewed by Jeremy on Wednesday, April 15, 2015 Rating: 5


  1. The link is to a granted patent, US 9009170 B1, not a pending application.

  2. You say of Google "I wonder where they draw the line in terms of privacy intrusion". One worry is that they don't draw one at all.

    It seems Google expects everyone to have to change their name on becoming an adult, to escape what the internet knows about them, see for instance


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