Wednesday whimsies

From Katfriend, Appointed Person and Certified IP Enthusiast Anna Carboni comes news of an amazing journey: four women – “the Coxless Crew” – are have set off from San Francisco’s Pier 39 in their boat, Doris, on an unsupported continuous three-stage row across the South Pacific Ocean to Cairns in Australia -- a total of 8,446 miles. One of them, Izzy Burnham, is an intellectual property lawyer with whom Anna used to work. The Crew is seeking to raise awareness and funds for their two chosen charities, Walking With The Wounded (in particular for a dedicated fund to help injured servicewomen) and Breast Cancer Care. Adds Anna:
We hope that you will join us in supporting the team in whatever way that you can. Do check out the team’s website at and consider sponsoring the row and/or ‘buying a mile’ (or perhaps a few) to help them to achieve their goals (i.e. to reach Australia and to raise £250,000 for charity on top of paying for the project). You can follow them on Twitter (@coxlesscrew) or read their blog via the website, which also has a map that will track their position as they make their way across the Pacific. 
Well, if the Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market can't fund the row, we'd all better do our bit.  Come on readers, says Merpel - it's all in a good cause.

EPO Rules. The European Patent Office has posted news that its new rules of procedure have been officially promulgated: you can read them, under "Decision of the Administrative Council of 25 March 2015 approving amendments to the Rules of Procedure of the Enlarged Board of Appeal of the European Patent Office (CA/D 3/15)", by clicking here.  They contain the procedure for proposing to the Administrative Council the removal of a member of a Board of Appeal.

World IP Day 2015 is nearly upon us. It's more than one day, really, though the real date is 26 April and this year's official theme is "Get up. Stand up. For music". There are events all over the world but, if you can't find one in your vicinity, do organise one yourself since there is no monopoly in it.  This Kat has just heard that Bosnia and Herzegovina is celebrating with a workshop on "Removing Copyright Infringing Content from the Internet", at the University of Travnik Faculty of Law on 27 April at 10 am.  If you are in the area, do pop in and say "hello!" This information comes from Katfriend Haris  Hasić, who tells him that he is presenting a paper at the 11th International Convention of Slavic librarians in Sarajevo this Friday. Haris's paper addresses protection of the rights of librarians and archivists through the implementation of the London manifesto and reform of the Copyright and Related Rights Law of Bosnia and Herzegovina. He adds that there are two other papers of particular note: Tatjana Brzulović Stanisavljević and Dragana Stolić (Univerzitetska biblioteka “Svetozar Marković”, Beograd) on "Libraries: between respect for copyright and the need to digitalize scientific heritage, as exemplified by orphan works" and Rita Fleis on "The possibility of supporting authors through temporary free presenting of unpublished artistic and scientific works at library websites up to the moment of their publication". 

Distance learning was so hard
before we all had computers ...
Distance learning. "Computer & Communications Law" (subtitled "with key focuses on digital IP law, media law, telecommunications law and IT law") is on its way again.  For those people who like to learn at home, and also for who have no other option, this popular course -- run by Queen Mary, University of London in conjunction with Informa --  is coming your way not once but twice, with commencement dates of 1 September 2015 and 11 January 2016. You can get further details of this popular, well-organised course by clicking here.

Around the weblogs.  Writing on Art & Artifice, Rosie Burbidge explains a recent Privy Council decision on an appeal from the Bahamas as to whether a technical drawing of a septic tank was an artistic work that was protected by copyright or a "useful article" which was not [the IPKat thinks it highly appropriate that the court giving a final ruling on the status of a drawing of a septic tank is called the "Privy Council", but no-one else seems to be amused]. The jiplp weblog features a review by Mr Justice Arnold on the economics of copyright which concludes with an expression of regret that it was not available to the Court of Appeal when it adopted the incremental costs rule in Hollister Inc v Medik Ostomy Supplies Ltd [2012] EWCA Civ 1419 [on which see the AmeriKat's posts here and here].
Wednesday whimsies Wednesday whimsies Reviewed by Jeremy on Wednesday, April 22, 2015 Rating: 5


  1. Can someone explain what the practical effect of Article 10 of the CA/D 3/15 is? Was there previously anything stopping board from doing these things?

  2. To Another Jeremy

    Article 10 is not new and was present in the previous Rules of Procedure. It simply codifies (in a very limited way) how amicus curiae briefs are to be handled, and basically gives the EBA a wide discretion.

    I hope that helps.


  3. I am not sure if it has been mentioned already but the new business distribution schemes of the various boards have been adopted, again for only a three month period.

  4. Further to the last post, I was checking on whether a decision had been issued in respect of case T0557/13 in which the minutes indicated that a question would be referred to the enlarged board in respect of poisonous divisionals, see

    Checking the business distribution scheme, it would appear that one of the board members, Jean Geschwind is no longer a member of this board but is spending his time as a legal member among three other boards. Hopefully this is not going to delay the decision too much. It is to be noted, unfortunately, that the patent is likely to expire before any decision is reached. Will the enlarged board continue to consider the matter?

  5. Anon of Friday 11:23 said: "It is to be noted, unfortunately, that the patent is likely to expire before any decision is reached. Will the enlarged board continue to consider the matter?"

    It is possible for a patentee to sue after expiry of a patent, in respect of infringement which took place before expiry. So I'm sure that the Enlarged Board would see that the parties still have a legitimate interest in continuing the appeal.

    However, if the appeal were withdrawn the Enlarged Board would presumably close the case. That might happen as part of a settlement, e.g. if the parties feel it is no longer worth fighting after the patent has expired.


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