It is very difficult for companies to effectively own colour, as was enforced in Local Directories’ Federal Court victory in its long running dispute against Telstra. Telstra claimed that by its use of the colour yellow for phone directories, Local Directories had engaged in misleading and deceptive conduct and passing off. The Court dismissed these claims and upheld that Telstra’s advertisements published in certain Yellow Pages directories were in fact misleading. Lisa Egan, Partner, who acted for Local Directories, discusses the various aspects of the case and the lessons for brands.
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