Category: Consumer & Retail

1
The NFT Collection: NFT Basics and Opportunities (Part 1)
2
Diving Deeper Into the Amendments to the Australian Designs Act: Tips, Tricks and Risks (Part 2)
3
Ronaldinho and Henry Marks Step Over Bad Faith Finding
4
FTC Imposes Multi-Million Dollar Penalties for Deceptive Consumer Reviews; Best Practices Reminders on Endorsements and Testimonials
5
Diving Deeper Into the Amendments to the Australian Designs Act: Tips, Tricks and Risks (Part 1)
6
F45 Cops a Punch in Further Australian Decision on Patents for Computer Implemented Inventions
7
Name and Shame On Instagram – The ASA’s New Tactic For Non-Compliant Influencers
8
Australian Government Acquires Copyright in Aboriginal Flag Design
9
The Dangers of Informal Licensing Agreements – An Update on the Hardingham v RP Data Case
10
Designs Law Changes Now Enacted in Australia

The NFT Collection: NFT Basics and Opportunities (Part 1)

NFTs have gone mainstream. But what are NFTs? Should your business develop its own NFT? How are they regulated? In The NFT Collection series of alerts, we will delve into these questions to help your business understand this new technology.

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Diving Deeper Into the Amendments to the Australian Designs Act: Tips, Tricks and Risks (Part 2)

In part 1 of this series (here), we considered the welcome introduction of a 12 month grace period that came into effect as of 10 March 2022. The grace period protects a design owner against inadvertent disclosure of a design before an application for protection of the design is filed – previously, this was fatal to having enforceable design rights. In part 2, we delve into the prior use infringement exemption that concurrently came into effect to mitigate the commercial risks that might arise as a result of the grace period.

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Ronaldinho and Henry Marks Step Over Bad Faith Finding

Bad faith has been a hot topic in UK and EU trade mark matters in recent years – not least in the sports world where recent prominent cases have concerned the football superstars, and one time teammates, Lionel Messi and Neymar. Whilst in those cases bad faith was found to be a valid ground for refusal of the trade marks in question, which the players did not consent to, a recent decision of the Appointed Person in the United Kingdom has provided an important clarification on how bad faith objections must be raised in the UK.

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FTC Imposes Multi-Million Dollar Penalties for Deceptive Consumer Reviews; Best Practices Reminders on Endorsements and Testimonials

In a widely distributed Notice of Penalty Offense sent to over 700 companies last year, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) warned businesses about use of fake endorsements and consumer reviews. Forewarned should be forearmed.” This is a continuing reminder to companies to have systems in place to ensure endorsements and reviews comply with FTC guidelines. Companies that are found to be in violation after receiving a “we’re watching you” letter can face civil penalties of up to $46,517 per violation.

Recipients of the FTC’s letter included major consumer products companies, retailers, and advertising agencies. Recipients were not accused of any wrongdoing but were put “on notice” of their responsibilities under the FTC Act and the Commission’s increased focus on specific advertising practices, particularly endorsements.

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Diving Deeper Into the Amendments to the Australian Designs Act: Tips, Tricks and Risks (Part 1)

Protecting the visual appearance of a product, or its packaging, should be a key consideration in any comprehensive IP protection strategy. We have previously written about amendments to the Australian Designs Act 2003 (Cth) (here and here). All changes to the Designs Act have now come into force as of 10 March 2022. In this first of a series of articles, we delve deeper into amendments that introduce the long awaited grace period.

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F45 Cops a Punch in Further Australian Decision on Patents for Computer Implemented Inventions

The scorecard against computer implemented inventions being patentable in Australia took another hit this week when the Federal Court revoked two innovation patents from global fitness giant, F45 in F45 Training Pty Ltd v Body Fit Training Company Pty Ltd (No 2) [2022] FCA 96. Justice Nicholas of the Federal Court held that F45’s innovation patents, which involved a computer implemented system for configuring and operating one or more fitness studios, were invalid and even if they were valid, rival fitness franchise Body Fit Training did not infringe them.

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Name and Shame On Instagram – The ASA’s New Tactic For Non-Compliant Influencers

In June 2021, the UK’s Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) began naming and shaming certain influencers for “consistently failing to disclose ads on their Instagram accounts, despite repeated warnings and help and guidance on sticking to the rules” on their website (see here).

The name and shame list was created as a result of the ASA Influencer Monitoring report, which found inconsistent ad disclosure by influencers on Instagram through Stories, posts and Reels, with the disclosure rules being followed only 35% of the time (see here). The influencers listed on the webpage are subject to enhanced monitoring and remain on there for a minimum of three months.

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Australian Government Acquires Copyright in Aboriginal Flag Design

The Australian Government has announced the purchase of copyright in the Australian Aboriginal Flag, ending several years of controversy and uncertainty and guaranteeing the ability of First Nations peoples to freely use the flag to express their identity.

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The Dangers of Informal Licensing Agreements – An Update on the Hardingham v RP Data Case

In February 2020, we wrote about the Federal Court’s decision in Hardingham v RP Data Pty Ltd, in which Justice Thawley held that RP Data (the operator of a real estate commercial information database) did not infringe copyright owned by Real Estate Marketing (REMA) and its sole director, Mr Hardingham, in images and floorplans created for real estate listings. Justice Thawley found that REMA/Mr Hardingham had effectively authorised the use of their copyright materials by RP Data, via a chain of implied licences and sub-licences from REMA/Mr Hardingham to real estate agencies, to the operator of realestate.com.au and ultimately to RP Data. This was despite the fact that there was no clear or written agreement between REMA/Mr Hardingham and the real estate agencies to whom the copyright images and floorplans were supplied.

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Designs Law Changes Now Enacted in Australia

Following on from our article of 15 February 2021, which can be read here, the Designs Amendment (Advisory Council on Intellectual Property Response) Bill 2020 received Royal Assent on 10 September 2021.

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