Sunday Surprises

In these July Ides, (bit less famous than March's, but what can we do?) let's look at news, events and everything IP-related!

We start off with an insight on how China clamps down on pirate trademark ransoms for famous brands, offered by Frederic Mostert, director of the Walpole Group. Mr. Mostert's article talks about the impact five high-profile IP cases, namely involving Facebook, upmarket grocer Fortnum & Mason, former basketball player Michael Jordan, MGM Studios and Esso, had in the bad faith registration doctrine in China.

Sheena Jacob and Daniel Lee of JurisAsia LLC informed us that the Singapore Government, together with the national IP office, is seeking public feedback on proposed changes to the patent legislation. The proposed changes include, among others: new re-examination option for patentees and third parties, amendments to examination guidelines on the new grace period for filing, and proposed amendments to Patents Rules concerning patentable subject matter and supplementary examination. Closing date for feedback is August 1st.

Kat more focussed on catching
crickets than in the news
In Indian shores, the famous white and blue-rimmed sari worn by Mother Teresa and by the order Missionaries of the Charity and the name Mother Teresa itself are now trade marks in India. The Guardian tells that that the name of the famous nun and her clothing have been used by other orders without permission and that this had misleading effects. Biswajit Sarka, the lawyer of the order, tells that the plans are now to have the name of Mother Teresa and her sari copyrighted (hopefully they meant trademarked) also in other countries.

Climbing a little north, Russia has a fast growing pharmaceutical market but recent political events as well as economic instability, might cut the presence of international innovators in the country. Mr. David Aylen of Gowling WLG, wrote the second edition of the comprehensive report The Universe of Pharmaceutical Trademarks in Russia 2017, discussing the trade mark aspects of the Russian pharmaceutical world. The full report can be dowloaded here.

Sailing on Radio Rock, if you are looking for pleasant things to do over the weekend, in the BBC's “50 Things That Made the Modern Economy” series, Tim Harford talks about the role Intellectual Property had in the Modern Economy, starting from Charles Dickens' harsh experience in the US, where at the time copyright laws did not apply to foreigners and he saw his works pirated. Stay tuned!

And lastly, if you ever wondered why it takes so long to have a patent granted in the and how can the process be sped up, well, the UKIPO has he answer: it all has to do with the number six and queues! Very intriguing indeed.

Image credits: Cecilia Sbrolli

Sunday Surprises Sunday Surprises Reviewed by Cecilia Sbrolli on Sunday, July 16, 2017 Rating: 5

1 comment:

  1. The Fortnum & Mason story actually involved several long-running sagas before the Chinese office. Fieldfisher (my firm) was co-ordinating the matters for most of the duration together with a couple of different Chinese firms. As well as the ultimately successful bad faith action, which Frederick mentions in his article, we also had a notable success against another party on the basis of copyright in the design of the iconic Fortnum's clock.

    I think the key lesson from working on those matters is extreme patience -- not only do the wheels grind very slowly (punctuated by frantic urgency as you have to meet a very short response deadline) but it is also the case that previously in our experience lower level decisions in China tended to stick to a very narrow remit. In a number of cases, we have had to appeal through several stages before more complex issues such as bad faith are actually addressed in detail.


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