Poland: "Principles of Merchant's Honesty In Trade Mark Cases"

Class 46 discusses an invalidation action in Poland based on merchant’s honesty (the applicant appropriated an image that had been previously used). ‘Merchant’s honesty’ sounds like ‘good or bad faith’ to me.


Apparent No Illegibility Defense In The UK

Out-law.com: “Defence of poor quality trademark reproduction rejected by Court of Appeal“:

A man has tried to overturn a conviction by claiming that he could not have infringed a trade mark because his copy of it was so poor. Gary Boulter has been refused permission to appeal his conviction of criminal trade mark infringement.


"Belgian ISP Wins Reprieve In Copyright Infringement Filtering Case"

Out-Law.com: “Belgian ISP Wins Reprieve in Copyright Infringement Filtering Case“:

A Belgian internet service provider that had been ordered by the courts to filter out copyright-infringing material from its network has won a court reprieve. It will not have to pay the €750,000 in fines that have built up over the past year.


"Google To Appeal Thumbnail Copyright Defeats in Germany"

Out-Law.com: “Google to appeal thumbnail copyright defeats in Germany“:

Google has lost two German court cases over copyright in images displayed as thumbnails in search results. German courts ruled in both cases that Google’s display of miniature versions of pictures without permission infringed copyright in the originals.
The search giant will lodge one appeal covering both cases, it told OUT-LAW.COM


Vey is Mir

Ynetnews: “Lebanon: Israel Stole Our Falafel“:

Lebanon is planning on filing an international law suit against Israel for violating a food copyright, Fadi Abboud, president of the Lebanese Industrialists Association, told the al-Arabiya network.
The Lebanese claim is that Israel markets original Lebanese food like tabouleh, kubbeh, hummus, falafel and fattoush which the Lebanese considered their trademarks prior to the establishment of the Jewish state.

UPDATE: Long-time reader Anonymous writes: “Marty, help me out here – what is a food copyright?”
Well, there is no such thing. We would really need to see the underlying documents of the suit. The Lebanese entity is likely thinking about appellations of origin (Champagne sparkling wine, Feta cheese, Parma ham) which are conventional methods of protecting a geographic name associated with a food but can’t be used to protect the generic name. “Lebanon” is (was?) potentially protectable for cedars of Lebanon.
In theory, a novel way of preparing food is patentable. I believable that Smuckers attempted to patent a PBJ sealed in a pita, a few years ago. Methods of presenation might obtain trade dress protection (I believe that Dairy Queen has a trademark registration for a certain type of twirl to its soft-serve ice cream. Traditional foods are not going to be protectable under either theory.
I went to the Lebanese site and found no information. If a suit is filed, please, kind readers, pass it on.


HARI PUTTAR and the Lawsuit in India

Article about Warner Bros lawsuit against producers of Indian film Hari Puttar.
From the trailer, it sort of looks like “Home Alone”


Not The Madrid Protocol But An Incredible Simulation

WIPO Madrid International Application Simulator:

The simulator is designed to show you how to use the Madrid System to seek the protection of your mark* abroad. At the end of the simulation, it will also help you estimate the cost of registering your mark through the Madrid System, a simple, easy and cost-effective international registration procedure.

HT Carl O.


"China Learning Fast in IPR, Also The Bad Habits"

IPEG.EU: “China learning fast in IPR, also the bad habits“:

Some bad copyright practices in Europe China now emulates. Take this recent article on People’s Daily about China copyrighting ancient images. Digital technology is being used to conserve the famous Mogao Grottoes of Dunhuang, in Northwest China’s Gansu Province (on UNESCO World Heritage List since 1987). The “Digital Dunhuang” project, which aims to pool all the treasures from Dunhuang, “protects its intellectual property rights (IPR) in the digital era” as it is called by the Chinese.


Text of Decision In Lucasfilms v Ainsworth (Stormtrooper Copyright)

Lucasfilm Ltd v Ainsworth [2008] EWHC 1878 (ch) (31 July 2008):

This is a case about the reproduction of replicas of various props used in the first Star Wars film. The Star Wars films are a series of science fiction films set at some different time and in another part of the Universe, and which feature the struggle between good and evil. They contain a heavy militaristic element, and that in turn requires uniforms. This case concerns the production of uniforms for the first of the films in the series, which is known as “Star Wars IV – A New Hope” and which was first shown in 1977. It bears the number IV, even though it was the first in the series to be produced, so as to leave room for expansion backwards in time, as it were, or “prequels”. I shall simply call it “Star Wars”, or “the film”. The second claimant was the English production company for the film; all the claimant companies are, taken together, the producing or licensing companies, and it is accepted that between them they have the necessary rights (if anyone has) to bring the claims made in this action.


2d Circuit: Topps v Cadbury

Topps contracted with an Argentinian company to provide Bazooka gum in various South American markets. The Argentinian company licensed and the trademark and had access to ‘technology’ (no doubt relating to how to fold a small comic strip around a brick-like piece of gum). The contract terminated and the Argentinian continued use of both the trademark and the technology. 2d Circuit: not ripe for summary judgment. Background: my reaction to this fact pattern two years ago was ‘hmmm.’

Read this doc on Scribd: decision 2d circuit topps v cadbury