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Trade mark trolls in Cuba: will 'General Washington' come to the aid of US brands?
Does history repeat itself? Not as such, but it does throw the light of the past on the problems of the present.  This Kat well recalls the problems faced by international brands, returning to South Africa after years of boycotts in the Apartheid era, only to find that other were...
Taste of nature in court as plant growers slug it out over red radish patent
We've just had tomatoes and broccoli [on which see last week's Katpost by David, here ] , and now it's the turn of red radishes [this Kat's favourite is the white radish: for more information on radishes, click here ] . From Rita Prins of Cresco BV comes the following episode from The...
U.S. Biosimilars Conference
American Conference Institute (ACI) will be holding a conference on U.S. Biosimilars on April 21, 2015 in Munich, Germany. ACI faculty will offer presentations on the following topics: • Minimizing the Uncertainty Surrounding the Pathway: Insights Into USFDA’s Current Initiatives...
In IMDb Privacy Case, 9th Circuit Rejects Hoang’s Appeal
Shutterstock / SoulCurry – I love My Privacy Hoang alleged that IMDb improperly used her personal information to find out her real age and published her real age on its website. She argued that this harmed her employment prospects in the industry. The jury ruled for IMDb. Hoang appealed. On...
France’s Censorship and Surveillance Initiatives Lack Judicial Review
Following the terrorist attacks in Paris in January, including the murder of several journalists at the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo , we anticipated that the French government would overreact . Sure enough, recent reporting has revealed that France is censoring websites and pushing...
IP Industry Issues Report On Intermediaries’ Role In Fighting IP Infringement In Supply Chain
A leading business group has published a report that it says shows how intermediaries can help keep fake and pirated products out of the supply chain and off the internet. The International Chamber of Commerce BASCAP (Business Action to Stop Counterfeiting and Piracy)...
The European Patent Office: a Message from Merpel
Readers of this weblog will not fail to have noticed the quantity of blogposts on the legal, administrative and social issues that have turned the European Patent Office (EPO), once a byword for expertise, efficiency and excellence, into the setting for a modern soap opera in which the three 'e's...
Cadence Pharmaceuticals Inc. v. Exela Pharmsci Inc. (Fed. Cir. 2015)
By Kevin E. Noonan -- The Federal Circuit availed itself of another opportunity to demonstrate that the Supreme Court's recent decision in Teva v. Sandoz may be relevant in cases that are the exception rather than the rule. The Federal Circuit's decision in Cadence Pharmaceuticals...
Morel Denied Attorneys’ Fees In Long-Running Suit Over Photos Lifted From Twitpic
Daniel Morel uploaded iconic Haiti earthquake photos to Twitpic and shared them via Twitter. Getty Images and AFP republished the photos without permission, and Morel scored a big $1.2M verdict when the jury ruled in his favor. However, the court denied his request for attorneys’ fees...
How The Leaked TPP ISDS Chapter Threatens Intellectual Property Limitations and Exceptions
By Prof. Sean Flynn, Associate Director, Program on Information Justice and Intellectual Property (PIJIP), American University Washington College of Law Reposted with permission from Infojustice.org, original here. I released a statement earlier today opining that the today’s leak of...
UN Human Rights Council Approves Expert On Privacy In The Digital Age
The UN Human Rights Council at its 28th session today in Geneva adopted a resolution that establishes a new mandate for a Special Rapporteur on Privacy in the Digital Age. The Council also approved a resolution extending the mandate of the Special Rapporteur in the field of cultural...
BREAKING: EPO staff union to win formal recognition?
The President of the EPO and Chairman of the Administrative Council (AC) have just published a joint statement following the recent AC meeting. Merpel is pleased to see that the AC is at last starting to address the crisis in staff relations that has developed in recent years...
Busy Year At WTO: 20th Anniversary, Doha Round, Dispute Settlement Overload
This year is an auspicious moment for the World Trade Organization and the multilateral trading system, WTO Director General Roberto Azevêdo told journalists today. In particular, he said, the WTO, after a hiatus last year, is implementing the results of the 2013 Bali agreement on...
G 3/14: Clarity from the Enlarged Board
Readers who are currently involved in European Patent Office (EPO) opposition proceedings where the patent has been amended (i.e. about 70% of opposition cases) will no doubt be as excited as this Kat to learn that the Enlarged Board has issued its decision in G 3/14 , a copy of which...
WIPO Releases Data on 2014 International Patent Filings
By Donald Zuhn -- Last week, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) released data on 2014 international application filings under the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT). WIPO noted that U.S. and Japanese filings accounted for almost half (48.5%) of all...
Locking In Public Access to Scientific Knowledge by Unlocking Scholarly Research
Promising public access legislation FASTR (Fair Access to Science & Technology Research Act) has been re-introduced by a bipartisan coalition in Congress. Lawmakers now have an important opportunity to strengthen and expand rules that allow taxpayers to freely read...
Digital exhaustion: a debate and a (policy) scandal
Eleonora, Mr Justice Arnold and Hugo Cuddigan QC Yesterday night The Intellectual Property Lawyers Organisation ( TIPLO ) hosted yet another fun event devoted to enjoying both the delicious food served (this time) at   Lincoln's Inn   and some IP-related...
Tech Companies and Privacy Advocates to Congress: End Mass Spying Now
A letter sent from major tech companies and civil society groups demanded Congress end the mass collection of calling records under Section 215 of the Patriot Act before an upcoming June 1 expiration date. The letter was signed by the Reform Government Surveillance coalition; which...
Online Dating App Grindr Isn’t Liable For Underage ‘Threesome’ (Forbes Cross-Post)
Photo credit: Vdovichenko Denis / Shutterstock.com Many online dating services undertake some efforts to screen out dangerous or problematic members, but what should the law do if those screening efforts aren’t perfect? As a recent case involving Grindr shows, the answer is nothing. Grindr...
The ACLU, Working for the Man
By Kevin E. Noonan -- The ACLU championed its efforts in the AMP v. Myriad case as being another instance of the group fighting for the rights of the many and the powerless against corporate America and the oligarchical few. In a paradox, it now seems that the fruits of their efforts are to...
White House Confirms: If Section 215 Expires, So Does Bulk Phone Records Collection
There’s some good news coming from the White House today that deserves repeating. Reuters is reporting that Ned Price, a spokesman from the President’s National Security Council , has unequivocally stated : If Section 215 sunsets, we will not continue the bulk telephony metadata program...
Court Says Uber and Lyft Drivers May be Employees
Drivers for Uber and Lyft claimed they are employees, not independent contractors. Two different judges hearing these cases both held that factual questions preclude summary judgment in favor of Uber and Lyft. As Judge Chhabria, who is hearing the Lyft dispute, notes, “[w]hether a worker is...
Patent On Conventional Plant Dismissed For Lack Of Novelty, Firm Says
The District Court of The Hague (Netherlands) ruled last week that a patent for red radish plants is invalid in the Netherlands for lack of novelty but did not rule on the fact that the particular plant was bred using essential biological processes. The case, between two Dutch companies...
The CJEU Hyperlinks Trilogy: Part III, C-279/13 C More Entertainment
For those wondering why buses come in threes, the same could be said of CJEU copyright rulings on hyperlinks. 2014 saw the first two rulings with Case C-466/12 Svensson [multiple previous Katposts including here and here ] and C-348/13 BestWater [ here ] . This Thursday, 26 March...
The Tyranny of the Judiciary
By Kevin E. Noonan -- There has always been a tension between the need for a final arbiter of the law and the inherent power associated with such a role placed in the judicial branch. Jefferson himself was wary of this tendency, writing in a letter to Edward Livingston in 1825: One single...
South African Government Draws Many Views On Draft New National IP Policy
CAPE TOWN – The much-anticipated process of gathering public submissions on the draft South Africa National Intellectual Property Policy has come to a close. The country’s trade minister says the office is busy collating some 100 documents submitted by interested...
Theater Employee’s Post-Termination Blogging Isn’t a Matter of “Public Concern”
This is a long-running and vitriolic dispute between James Ryan and Yvonne Johnson. Johnson was the director of the Spokane Civic Theater. She hired Ryan to be the music director. A few months after the hiring, Johnson fired Ryan allegedly because he posted a craigslist listing for sex...
TPP’s Copyright Term Benefits US, Burdens Others
The US got its way. The Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement (TPP) will require all member nations to have a minimum copyright term of life plus 70 years. As a result, Japan, Canada, New Zealand, and three other nations will have to increase the duration of copyright by 20 years...
Court Report
By Sherri Oslick -- About Court Report: Each week we will report briefly on recently filed biotech and pharma cases. Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. v. Mylan Pharmaceuticals, Inc. 1:15-cv-00049; filed March 19, 2015 in the Northern District of West Virginia Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. v. Mylan...
Conference & CLE Calendar
March 24, 2015 - "Leveraging Inter Partes Review Petition Denials -- Lessons From PTAB Full or Partial Denials to Avoid Institution of an IPR or Avoid a Denial" (Strafford) - 1:00 to 2:30 pm (EDT) March 25-26, 2015 - Post-Grant PTO Proceedings*** (American Conference Institute) - New...
Magnetic attraction and the power of 4: seeking the right equation for comparison of trade marks
What happens when the General Court of the European Union -- to which Community trade mark (CTM) appeals are brought -- fails to carry out an assessment of the likelihood of confusion between two marks, considering them in their entirety, and then does not sufficiently substantiate its...
Something about the way you look tonight is ... an IP infringement?
Style  IP infringement  evolution: from Jude Law ... The way one looks can be the source of many things: it can sometimes inspire certain impalpable feelings one may be (yet) unable to describe (" And I can't explain / But it's something about the way you look tonight / Takes my...
AIPLA Program on PCT Filing and International Patent Prosecution
The American Intellectual Property Law Association (AIPLA) Law School Online Programming Subcommittee will be offering an online program on "PCT Filing and International Patent Prosecution" on April 1, 2015. Samson Helfgott of Katten Muchin Rosenman, LLP will focus on the why...
BREAKING NEWS - Uncertainty over the EQE Pre-exam results
This Kat just learned of a most regrettable uncertainty in the issuance of the European Qualifying Examination pre-exam results today.  According to the DeltaPatents blog and comments posted there,  the situation, as he was informed by a concerned candidate, is as follows: A first...
The Foilies Round 4: Retaliation and Consequences
Open government advocates file requests for public records because it’s not only our right, but our duty as citizens to find out what the government is doing in our name, how officials are spending our tax dollars, what kinds of mistakes they’re making, what problems our...
Friday fantasies
Geo-blocking: fact of life or threat to civilisation? Around the weblogs 1: ordinary things . "How the digital single market will affect brand owners" is a guest post on the Managing IP Blog by the smiling duo of Katfriends Toe Sue Aung and Chris Oldknow of the recently-formed Elipe consultancy...
"Peace for our time", or another wasted trip to Munich?
Comment-posters: please note the reminder at the foot of the page. From the European Patent Office yesterday came the news item that is reproduced in its entirety below, both for the benefit of those readers who may not have seen it and for the benefit of those readers who, having...
Gotta Dance? Apparently Not -- A Biosimilar Update
By Andrew Williams -- United States District Judge Seeborg of the Northern District of California denied Amgen's motion for a preliminary injunction today in the Amgen v. Sandoz case, thereby paving the way for the marketing of the first biosimilar in the United States. The...
Senate Intelligence Committee Advances Terrible "̶C̶y̶b̶e̶r̶s̶e̶c̶u̶r̶i̶t̶y̶"̶...
The Senate Intelligence Committee advanced a terrible cybersecurity bill called the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act of 2015 (CISA) to the Senate floor last week. The new chair (and huge fan of transparency) Senator Richard Burr may have set a record as he kept the bill...
Patreon Buys Subbable
If you're a Subbable supporter you've probably gotten several emails on this already - make sure they didn't go into your spam folder or something. It's interesting to me to see consolidation happening in this space. The two entities had almost identical models, except Patreon doesn't...
The Foilies Round 3: Ridiculous Redactions and Records Errata
Government agencies sure love their black markers. For transparency activists, receiving overly redacted documents is a guilty pleasure. Sure, we'd all prefer to have the records unmarred by secrecy (except for narrow occasions, such as when the black-outs legitimately...
All WIPO Filings On The Rise, Serving Mainly Developed Economies; Telecoms Increase
Today, the World Intellectual Property Organization released the 2014 numbers of filings for its systems for patents, trademarks, and industrial designs, which form the basis of the revenue of the UN organisation. Filings under the three systems grew in 2014, with a notable presence of...
Immersion Corp. v. HTC Corp. (D. Del. 2015)
District Court Overrules PTO Interpretation of 35 U.S.C. § 120 By Kevin E. Noonan -- Judge Richard Andrews, District Court Judge for the District of Delaware rendered a decision on a motion for summary judgment in Immersion Corp. v. HTC Corp. that, if affirmed, could put many more...
Wednesday whimsies
This Kat is delighted to have heard through one of his favourite grapevines that the truly excellent Mark Anderson, IP Draughts blogger and founder of Anderson Law , has been appointed to be chair of the Law Society for England and Wales's Intellectual Property Law Committee with...
EU Trade Commissioner Suggests Special Court For ISDS Cases
European Union Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstroem today defended the inclusion of investor-state dispute settlement panels in the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), but offered several amendments for consideration.
A drop in the ocean? SMART WATER appeal runs dry
This morning the General Court of the European Union (Seventh Chamber) gave its ruling in  Case T‑250/13   Naazneen Investments Ltd v OHIM, Energy Brands, Inc. intervening . This decision concerns the fate of a Community trade mark for the SMART WATER...
Enzo Biochem Inc. v. Applera Corp. (Fed. Cir. 2015)
By Andrew Williams -- When can a district court's factual findings related to the extrinsic evidence in a claim construction determination not be given deference by the Federal Circuit? At least one situation is when the findings do not "override" "the totality of the specification,...
What can IP offer Africa -- and what can Africa offer IP?
A handsome book recently arrived on this Kat's crowded desk , demanding his attention: it's Innovation & Intellectual Property: Collaborative Dynamics in Africa, edited by scholars Jeremy de Beer, Chris Armstrong, Chidi Oguamanam and Tobia Schonwetter.  Published by...
Will the U.S. Senate Allow Big Media to Hold Blind People for Ransom?
In Jewish religious law, there is an offence called lifnei iver (literally, “before the blind”), that prohibits placing stumbling blocks before blind people, deriving from a verse of scripture also accepted by Christians and Muslims. This offense seems so obvious that it hardly requires a...
WIPO Members Discussing Industrial Designs, Geographical Indications This Week
World Intellectual Property Organization member governments are meeting this week to try to advance a proposal to convene a high-level negotiation for a procedural treaty on industrial designs. They also are discussing how geographical indications should be...
Polo not the same as football, but Royal Berks give Yanks a partial whipping
It's the polo season again in Luxembourg , which hosts a forum that may have seen more POLO-related litigation than anywhere else in Europe, and possibly beyond (POLO cases that have come before the European Union's top courts so far can be seen here ). The latest is ...
Court Rejects Bizarre Attempt To Scrub Consumer Review–Goren v. Ripoff Report
Photo credit: “ An eraser from a pencil is starting to erase the word data ” // ShutterStock I previously blogged about this matter (see also Venkat’s update ). A Massachusetts attorney, Goren, was unhappy about a user review of his law firm posted to Ripoff Report, which is well-known for...
IPO Webinar on IP5 Global Dossier
The Intellectual Property Owners Association (IPO) will offer a one-hour webinar entitled "IP5 Global Dossier: A New Era in Global Patent Prosecution?" on April 2, 2015 beginning at 2:00 pm (ET). Don Levin of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, Samson Helfgott of Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP...
EFF Files Second Round of Comments on New York’s BitLicense Proposal
Today, EFF filed a second round of comments to the New York State Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) on its proposed regulatory rules for digital currencies like Bitcoin. EFF, the Internet Archive, and reddit filed initial joint comments to NYDFS back in October 2014, opposing the...
Manila Principles On Intermediary Liability Offer Vision For Balance
A new set of principles launched this week by a range of global non-governmental organisations attempts to set out guidelines for internet intermediaries’ liability for content of communications. The six principles, which are seeking endorsement from organisations and individuals...
Friday fantasies
Mew-sings Forthcoming events. There's plenty to choose from on the IPKat's Forthcoming Events page , but some events come to this Kat's notice so late that he doesn't have the chance to get them loaded up on to it. One such event, organised by the UK branch of AIPPI, fits that...
When the translation is the prior art: or is it?
Translations have long engaged IP law and practice. In the 19th century, the fundamental issue focused on whether copyright extended protection to a translation. After an initial period of disagreement (U.S. law said “no”, English law said “yes”), consensus was reached in favour of protection...
How's that Kindle Daily Deal Working Out for You?
If you're Jim Hines, apparently pretty well . Hines reports on the experience of having his Libromancer selected for the cut-price (USD 2) deal. He reports that the result was a surge in sales, a competitive price cut from other retailers, and apparently there's some noticeable pull-through of...
UN Human Rights Council Appoints Special Rapporteur on the Right to Privacy
The Electronic Frontier Foundation is pleased with the United Nations Human Rights Council's (UNHRC) decision to adopt a resolution appointing a special rapporteur on the right to privacy. This decision is a key step forward for the UNHRC; it elevates the right to privacy to the priority level that the...
TVCatchup heads back to Luxembourg for a second preliminary ruling
A familiar sight for lawyers involved in TVCatchup suits ITV Broadcasting Limited, ITV 2 Limited, ITV Digital Channels Limited, Channel Four Television Corporation, 4 Ventures Limited, Channel 5 Broadcasting Limited and ITV Studios Limited v TVCatchup Limited (in administration)...
DMV Photo-Sharing, Facial Recognition Nixed from California Strategic Plan
More than 1,500 Californians over the last two weeks joined EFF in an email campaign to defeat a proposal by an obscure committee within the California Department of Justice that would have  compromised the privacy and security of their driver-license photos .  As part of its...
Broccoli & Tomatoes, part deux: more from the Enlarged Board
The Enlarged Board has been busy indeed. Not content with clarifying the law on clarity (see here ), it has also now emerged from the garden clutching two prize specimens: G 2/12 (Tomatoes II) and G 2/13 (Broccoli II) . Broccoli & Tomatoes - Jacob Levine Both cases (they were dealt...
Indian Draft Pesticides Bill Contains TRIPS-Plus Data Exclusivity, Indian Pharma Says
India is considering legislation on pesticides containing data exclusivity provisions that would raise the level of intellectual property protection above the minimum required by international trade agreements and could act as a precursor for pharmaceutical products in the country, a...
BREAKING: CJEU says that live broadcasts are not communication to the public within InfoSoc...
Did you think that following the decisions of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) in   Svensson   [Katposts here ]   and   BestWater   [ here ] , the story with copyright and hyperlinks was over? Of course not. As Tom explained in his  ...
Cuba, Large Friends, Trying To Corner US Into Compliance With WTO Rum Trademark Ruling
Better relations may be on the way for Cuba and the United States, but the thaw has yet to be seen in a longstanding World Trade Organization dispute over a Cuban rum trademark. As it has done for years, the United States today casually reported that there are several pieces of...
Wednesday whimsies
Fifty-Fifty, and fizzing. "When I saw the headline, I thought it was about The Simpsons", says Chris Torrero (katpat!), echoing the first thoughts of many of us non-Californians when confronted with the banner "BART Battles Brewer In Trademark Dispute Over Beer Named ‘B.A.R.T.’" The truth...
Fenwick Launches Post-Alice Analysis Site
Today Fenwick & West launched a new website on which users can easily browse the Post- Alice decisions of the PTAB, the Federal Circuit, and the district courts to see how the law on patent eligibility is evolving. The purpose of this site is to allow those who want to learn more about the...
Slifer Named USPTO Deputy Director
A veteran technology industry and innovation patent attorney has been named the new deputy director has been named at the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
AMBA speaks - with a brand new website
The IPKat likes websites, since he lives in one himself, and is always happy to welcome a new one. Merpel was interested to hear of an organisation that is perhaps less well known in European patent circles.  AMBA is the Association of the Members of the Boards of Appeal, and...
Indian Victory Bears Out the Need for the Manila Principles
This week, on the edges of RightsCon Southeast Asia in Manila, Philippines, digital rights groups from around the world came together for two days of intensive work to finalize a new, ambitious standard to safeguard freedom of expression and innovation online. The approach the...
Impulse trade mark registration: no sweat, as AG gives his view
The Opinion of Advocate General Wahl was published today in Case C‑125/14 Iron & Smith Kft v Unilever NV , a request for a preliminary ruling by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) from the Hungarian Fővárosi Törvényszék -- that's the Budapest Municipal...
U.S. Patent No. 6,966,831: Method of branching flow of game
U.S. Patent No. 6,966,831: Method of branching flow of game Issued November 22, 2005, to Sony Summary:  For all you gamers who grow tired of linear story lines without much of a story, the ‘831 patent will be appealing. The ‘831 patent provides for a story...
As Loginov gets logged out, a Kat mewses: are the new gTLDs a friend or foe?
Readers are again treated today to the thoughts of our very own emeritus Kat, Catherine Lee , who has been taking a look at some of the less enjoyable aspects of the new generic top-level domains that have excited the greed creativity of so many good souls.  This is what she...
International Coalition Launches 'Manila Principles' to Protect Freedom of Expression Worldwide
New 'Best Practice' Roadmap to Protect Rights and Promote Innovation Manila - An international coalition launched the “Manila Principles for Intermediary Liability” today—a roadmap for the global community to protect online freedom of expression and innovation around the...
Facebook Has Clarified its Policies. How About Fixing Them?
Facebook recently updated its community standards . As the company noted in the announcement accompanying the change, their “policies and standards themselves are not changing,” but that they wanted to provide more clarity to a set of existing rules that have often been misunderstood...
Report: Harmonising African Seed Laws Would Destroy Continent’s Seed Systems
Harmonisation of Africa’s seed laws: death knell for African seed systems The African Centre for Biosafety (ACB) has released its new report titled, ‘Harmonisation of Africa’s seed laws: a recipe for disaster- Players, motives and dynamics”. The report shows how African governments...
Monday miscellany
Forthcoming events . The IPKat reminds readers that there's always plenty of choice when it comes to conferences, seminars, lectures and courses that might grab a person's fancy. In the past week the Kat's list has grown by nearly 30 items (mostly from FORUM Institut...
Never too late: if you missed the IPKat last week
Were you away last week or just too busy to read  all  IPKat posts (especially if you are   not  that  much into patents)? Do not despair because, as usual, fellow IPKat contributor Alberto  is here to rescue you with his handy compilation of...
Court Report
By Sherri Oslick -- About Court Report: Each week we will report briefly on recently filed biotech and pharma cases. Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. v. Mylan Pharmaceuticals, Inc. 1:15-cv-00049; filed March 19, 2015 in the Northern District of West Virginia Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. v. Mylan...
A Kat may look at an Administrative Council: an open letter to the AC
Regular readers of this weblog will by now be well aware that a number of issues concerning the European Patent Office and its governance have featured in many of its recent posts. The members of the blog team look forward to a time when this will no longer be the case, a time when...
Open Source Model In Computers Should Be Applied To Genomic Data, Paper Says
Genomic data should be made publicly available for the promotion of science as a global public good, a new paper argues. Two researchers suggest that a model inspired by the open-source computer software movement should be developed for plant breeding, animal breeding, and...
IPO Webinar on Commercial Success at the PTAB
The Intellectual Property Owners Association (IPO) will offer a one-hour webinar entitled "Commercial Success at the PTAB" on March 25, 2015 beginning at 2:00 pm (ET). Pradeep Chintagunta, The University of Chicago Booth School of Business; Michael Flibbert of Finnegan...
BCP Customer Partnership Meeting
The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office will be holding its next biotechnology/chemical/pharmaceutical (BCP) customer partnership meeting on Tuesday, April 7, 2015. The meeting will be simultaneously available at the USPTO Headquarters (Alexandria, VA) and the Rocky Mountain...
The Need for Care With “Thoughtcrime”
When does an online fantasy cross the line into criminal conspiracy? That’s the issue the Second Circuit Court of Appeals is currently weighing in United States v. Gilberto Valle , the so-called “ cannibal cop ” case. EFF filed an amicus brief in support of Valle today, arguing that finding...
GoDaddy Gets Important Section 230 Win in Second Circuit–Ricci v. Teamsters Union Local 456
Photo credit: enameled house number two hundred and thirty // ShutterStock GoDaddy won a Section 230 case in the Second Circuit. It’s a short and efficient ruling, but it’s a published opinion and the court says it’s the first Second Circuit opinion on Section 230 (I haven’t double-checked)...
Standstill On Industrial Design Treaty, Country Names, GIs In WIPO Committee
Hopes to gain ground in discussions toward a procedural treaty on industrial design applications were not met this week at the World Intellectual Property Organization. Meanwhile, proposals on the protection of geographical indications on the internet and on a potential international...
In memoriam: Albert Maysles, the man who helped change the film documentary
The manner by which we compensate the creative process is sometimes unequipped to provide proper recognition for more general creative contributions that enjoy long-lasting influence. We may all take pleasure in discussing whether a monkey or the photographer who set up the camera is...
Twenty-four Million Wikipedia Users Can’t Be Wrong: Important Allies Join the Fight Against...
Last week, the ACLU filed a welcome additional challenge to the NSA’s warrantless Internet backbone surveillance (aka “Upstream” surveillance) on behalf of Wikimedia and a number of other media and human rights organizations. We applaud all of those involved in bringing the case.  It...
Acronyms in descriptive composite marks: how to handle them when comparing marks
Last week Advocate General Mengozzi gave his Opinion in  Case C-20/14   BGW Marketing - & Management- Service GmbH v Bodo Scholz   [available so far in 17 EU official languages, but not English, notes Merpel]   on the interpretation of...
Congress Must Pass FOIA Reform Legislation
This week is Sunshine Week , an annual celebration to promote government transparency and access to information. As a public interest organization dedicated to these ideals , EFF continues to call on Congress to update the Freedom of Information Act , a key tool for citizens to...
International Women’s Leadership Forum: a report on the first London edition
Things have changed since 1558 , but by how much ...? Just over a fortnight ago, the long-awaited and much-discussed ( here , here   and here ) International Women’s Leadership Forum took place in London under the Chatham House Rule . While Managing...
New Book: ACTA And The Plurilateral Enforcement Agenda: Genesis And Aftermath
The new book, “The ACTA and the Plurilateral Enforcement Agenda,” offers an insightful read on the highly debated Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (ACTA), an effort to raise intellectual property protection that was met with opposition by many countries and was subject to intense...
A little rienergy can't save Coke-alike trade mark application, says General Court
Only the other day, this Kat discovered  that the Benelux-based firm of IP enthusiasts Hoyng Monegier had an office in Spain too, and it is from that very office that Laura Alonso, a partner in the firm's Madrid office, has written to share with the Kats and their readers the news...
EFF Asks PTO to Stop Issuing Abstract Software Patents
The Supreme Court took a major step in cutting back on abstract software patents last June when it issued its landmark ruling in Alice Corp. v. CLS Bank . In essence, the court said that abstract ideas implemented by conventional computer process are not eligible for patent protection...
The EPO Breaks Silence: "No, we are not violating fundamental human rights"
Merpel was delighted to see that the management of the European Patent Office has finally commented publicly on the issues of the increasingly strained staff relations within the Office, and in particular on the decision of the Dutch Court in favour of SUEPO...
Central European Countries Establish Visegrad Patent Institute To Reduce Costs, Facilitate...
WARSAW - In a move towards increased regional cooperation in the field of intellectual property, Poland, Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic have signed an agreement to set up the Visegrad Patent Institute (VPI). And representatives of the parties to the agreement say that...
A European Digital Single Market Is Only Possible if Internet Users Are Heard
Last year, the current President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Junker, declared that his number one priority was to “create a digital single market for consumers and businesses,” in which “consumers can access music, movies and sports events on their...
The Foilies Round 2: Law Enforcement Accountability
Police practices came under intense public scrutiny in 2014, as citizens raised further questions about the use of mass surveillance technologies and deadly force. From Ferguson to New York City, from Alameda County to Tucson, watchdogs have sought records to hold law...
Spain: Did the “Google Tax” really change the market?
In the not-so-very-distant past , the IPKat welcomed a guest blogpost, "Copyright in Spain: a month without Google News", from his Spanish friend Míchel Olmedo Cuevas .  Now the same author is back with further news which rather suggests that, irrespective of the sensational...
Obscure California Committee Moves to Expand How Police Access and Use DMV Photos
Attention California: the privacy and security of your driver licenses are under threat from a new scheme to massively expand how photo IDs are shared and analyzed by law enforcement agencies. Over the last few months, an obscure panel within the California Department of Justice...
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