Showing posts from 2015

5 parallel stripes on a shoe: nothing more than a rather banal generic embellishment?

Fresh and interesting article posted on the IPKat about a 5 parallel stripes mark. The question at stake: Can the stripes, as placed on the side of the shoe (see below), immediately be apprehended as constituting an indication of the commercial origin of the goods concerned?

Happy reading!

"In its judgment of 4 December 2015 in case T-3/15 the General Court upheld OHIM’s assessment that the below mark lacks distinctive character and added some more pages to the history of position marks in Europe.

In 2013, K-Swiss Inc., filed with OHIM an application for protection in the European Union of International Registration No 932758 (above depicted) in connection with ‘athletic shoes, namely tennis shoes, basketball shoes, cross-country and jogging shoes and casual shoes’, in Class 25.

Both the Examiner and, on appeal, OHIM’s Second Board of Appeal refused registration of the mark on the basis of Art. 7(1)(b) of Regulation No 207/09.The Board of Appealessentially held that the five paralle…

Recent Article On Intellectual Property Protection For Graphical User Interfaces

Fresh and interestingarticle I recently wrote for the Journal of Intellectual Property Law and Practice - Oxford Journals: IP Protection For Graphical User Interfaces In The EU, US, And China. Here is the abstract:
The article first briefly explains what a graphical user interface is. Then explores the current GUI protection offered in the US, the EU and China. Finally, as a case study, the article analyses the strategy developed by the Apple legal team concerning the Apple Watch.In addition, it describes how, to reach the ‘top (new) apps’ stores, developers and designers willing to launch a new (smartwatch) app are focusing on graphical user interfaces (GUI); and shows that having an intellectual property right for a GUI provides competitive advantage and a strong basis for early-stage funding strategy.Happy reading! 

(Thomas Dubuisson, IP protection for graphical user interfaces in the EU, US and China, Journal of Intellectual Property Law & Practice, 2015/10, p. 767-774).

Unicorns and Intellectual Property Rights

Fresh and interesting article posted on about the valuation of intellectual property as a strategic business asset in the hands of Unicorns, a startup with a valuation exceeding $1 billion.

Happy reading! 
 "It seems that not a day goes by without a commentary about Unicorns, a Silicon Valley-coined term used to describe a startup (pre-exit) with a valuation exceeding $1 billion. The number of Unicorns, the vast majority of which are US software companies, has recently crossed the 150 mark, according to the TechCrunch Unicorn leaderboard. Topping the US Unicorn list are high flyers like Uber at $51 billion and Airbnb at $25.5 billion, followed by companies that are mostly concentrated in three industries: Consumer Internet, E-commerce and Software.Unicorns have captured the attention of investors, analysts and other market observers who are trying to understand the factors driving the formidable valuations commanded by these mythical ventures and, in some cases, bet …

PornHub and Parmigiano Reggiano: How far is free advertising allowed?

Fresh and interesting article posted on the IPKat about the PornHub and Parmigiano Reggiano case.

Happy reading!

"In times whenfood pornhas become so ubiquitous to be almost cliché, things may get more interesting when food is actually used to advertise porn.

This is what happened a few days ago, when PornHub[link not provided to protect innocent eyes and underage readers]launched its premium service, promptlylabelled'the Netflix of porn'[but would Netflix be happy to be associated with porn?].
To advertise its subscription service PornHub released thevideoof a couple whilst shopping at a supermarket. The video opens with the woman reminding her companion to get some cheese. The man thus suggests buying some aged 'Parmigiano Reggiano'[let's leave the issue of how this is pronounced in the ad aside, as it makes any Italianfeelsuddenly blue], and the woman asks him when he did become such a foodie. The man replies that "They say it's the PornHub Premium…

Summer is over. Let's get back to ... blog!

Fresh and interesting articles are coming back after this long summer period... I'll work hard to ensure that I provide enough information and interesting articles to make it worthwhile for my readers to check the site out regularly.

Thank you for your support and reading my blog!

Oracle v. Google: Petition For A Writ Of Certiorari Denied!

Fresh and interesting article posted on FOSS Patents about the Oracle v. Google Android-Java copyright case. The suspense was all killing us but yesterday the Supreme Court of the United States finally denied the petition for a writ of certiorari.

Happy reading!

"The copyrightability of code relating to Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) may elicit more heat than light from a small but vocal group of people. The Supreme Court of the United States, however, has not concluded that there is anything quite so special about the subject that Google's petition for writ of certiorari (request for Supreme Court review) in Oracle's Android-Java copyright case should be granted. At its Thursday conference, the court denied the petition, as just reported by Reuters court reporter Dan Levine on Twitter. And as he accurately noted, this is a "huge victory" for Oracle.
The order list is now available online. On page 11 you can find this entry:

New Guest Blog Post

Here is a link to my latest guest blog post for the IPKat on forthcoming patent litigation which should be of the greatest interest to fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory IP licence enthusiasts in Europe:

Happy reading!

Is The New Generation Of EU Operators Ready To Overtake Dominant U.S. Players?

Fresh and interesting article posted on Re/code about the EU legislative agenda to regulate Internet companies and to prime European firms to better compete with U.S. tech heavyweights.

Happy reading!

"Tomorrow, when Silicon Valley wakes up, its newest fracas with Europe will be well under way.

On Wednesday, European Commission Vice President Andrus Ansip is expected to reveal the “Digital Single Market” strategy, a legislative agenda to regulate Internet companies and to prime European firms to better compete with U.S. tech heavyweights. Basically, they’re trying to give homegrown firms a fighting chance against established American companies.

This is different than the European Union antitrust probes into Google, which launched last month. For one, it’s not about slapping wrists when a company crosses a line. Instead — and this is what U.S. tech companies fear — it’s a bid to move the entire line back.

Also, it’s not just Google. The regulation is likely to strike dominators like A…

"Blurred Lines" Copyright Case: $7.4 Million Fine!

Fresh and interesting article posted on the IPKat concerning the Los Angeles jury's decision on March 10, 2015 determining that Pharrell Williams and Robin Thicke had copied several elements from Marvin Gaye’s 1977 song “Got to Give It Up” with the “Blurred Lines" hit of 2013.

Happy reading! 

"What with Kats scattering in all directionsto cover so many exciting developments, it's always good to know that the IPKat, Merpel and the blogging team have friends on whom they can rely.  One such friend is occasional guest bloggerDorothea Thompson, once upon a time a trade mark attorney but now recycled at London-based law firm Bray & Krais. Dorothea has penned this little piece on a recent piece of US litigation that has become a global smash-hit:
Blurred Lines in focus
Just in case IPKat readers have lived a media-free life in the past 48 hours: on Tuesday an eight-member jury unanimously found that Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams’ 2013 pop smash hit ‘Blurred Lines’ inf…

Top Seven Patent-Earning Companies

Fresh and interesting article posted on Fortune about the top seven patent-earning tech companies in 2014. 

Happy reading!

"Patents are the lifeblood of the tech industry—and if last year’s numbers are any indication, that sector is performing with vigor. 

More than 300,000 utility patents—those are the ones for inventions, rather than designs—were issued by the United States Patent and Trademark Office last year, a record high. Such patents allow companies to put their inventions on lockdown for up to two decades, reaping rewards for significant R&D investments. And there’s another incentive: allowing businesses to stock up their intellectual property warchests and fortify their legal defenses.

“If you’re a bully you’re not going to pick on the big kids,” says Larry Cady, vice president of marketing and senior patent analyst at IFI Claims Patent Services, a firm that maintains a database of patents. “You’re going to pick on the pipsqueaks.”

So which companies are the head honchos…