IP Law Watch

Legal issues, law and regulations concerning the world of IP.

 

1
The Debate Continues: What is a ‘Transformative Use’ for ‘Fair Use’ Purposes
2
Have the Bubblies Popped for Champagne Jayne?
3
Patents for Humanity: It’s Not Just an Invention
4
Special Leave Sought to Appeal Gene Sequencing Decision to the High Court of Australia
5
Limping Trade Marks and Distinctiveness in Australia
6
MIKSEŁKO VS. MILKSEŁKO ŁACIATE
7
Suspected Fake Shoes Swooped in Hong Kong
8
Watching Paid TV for Free?
9
Purple is the New Orange: FDA Releases a Purple Book for Biosimilars
10
Australian Patent Examination Reports Issuing Faster Than Expected in Some Technology Areas

The Debate Continues: What is a ‘Transformative Use’ for ‘Fair Use’ Purposes

In a recent decision by the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit (Seventh Circuit), Judge Frank Easterbrook expressly joined the ongoing debate over the scope of ‘transformative use’ analysis in the ‘fair use’ defense to copyright infringement. In Kienitz v. Sconnie Nation LLC, the court reviewed the trial court’s determination that the using of a photograph of the mayor of Madison, Wisconsin, on a critical T-shirt was ‘fair use’ and did not create liability under the Copyright Act. In finding ‘fair use’, the trial court found support in the recent opinion in Cariou v. Prince, in which the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit held that the use of a photographic image in a work of ‘appropriation art’ was ‘transformative’ and thus a ‘fair use’.

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Have the Bubblies Popped for Champagne Jayne?

Rachel ‘Champagne Jayne’ Powell’s passion for Champagne has helped her to become an award-winning wine expert, broadcaster, journalist and presenter. However, Ms. Powell’s ‘Champagne Jayne’ brand has put her at loggerheads with the trade organisation established to manage the common interests of the growers and the Champagne Houses behind the drink she loves so much. Read More

Patents for Humanity: It’s Not Just an Invention

The deadline for submission of applications for the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO) competition, PATENTS FOR HUMANITY, has been extended to October 31, 2014. The purpose of the program is to incentivize patent owners, applicants and licensees to use their technologies to address humanitarian issues in any of the following categories:

  • medicine
  • nutrition
  • sanitation
  • household energy
  • living standards. Read More

Special Leave Sought to Appeal Gene Sequencing Decision to the High Court of Australia

We recently reported on the decision by a five judge bench of the Full Court of the Federal Court of Australia (Full Court) which found that Myriad Genetics Inc’s patent covering the isolated BRCA1 gene is valid. The Full Court unanimously rejected an appeal by Ms. Yvonne D’Arcy from a decision by Justice Nicholas at first instance. Read our alert here.

It is now being reported that Ms. D’Arcy has sought special leave to appeal the decision to the High Court of Australia (High Court).

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Limping Trade Marks and Distinctiveness in Australia

Oyster Bay’s Wine Bottle Trade Mark Application Rejected

In 2012, New Zealand winery Oyster Bay filed a trade mark application as follows:

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MIKSEŁKO VS. MILKSEŁKO ŁACIATE

Ruling of the Supreme Administrative Court of 10 April 2014 (II GSK 255/13)

This case involved a clash between marks serving to identify fats comprising a mixture of butter and vegetable fats. In 1996, the word mark MIKSEŁKO was registered. This is a fantasy composition suggesting that the goods it identifies are a mixture of fats with the addition of butter. In 2008, a competitor of the owner of the first sign successfully registered the mark MILKSEŁKO ŁACIATE. That mark is a word-graphic mark consisting of two elements. The second is very well known as an independent mark used to identify milk and a line of goods produced from cow’s milk. The first element, by using the English word ‘milk’, emphasizes that the products are derived from milk, while the first element as a whole suggests that butter is contained in products bearing the mark. Read More

Suspected Fake Shoes Swooped in Hong Kong

Acting on a complaint that fake sports shoes were sold in Mong Kok, a popular shopping district for trendy teens and tourists, Hong Kong Customs went into action and raided retail shops and warehouses.

Customs Officers seized suspected fakes, including 1,905 pairs of sports shoes, to a tune of HKD1.67 million. The suspected head of the fake goods syndicate along with six other people were arrested.

The arrests included a 16 year old and Customs has appealed to young people to be on guard against dodgy dealings when working in summer jobs.  Read More

Watching Paid TV for Free?

The drama craze and football fever had increased the popularity of set-top boxes, sold at the cost of a few hundred Hong Kong dollars and easy to use. Users can simply connect the box to a TV to enjoy television dramas, sports and even real-time broadcasts from different countries.

Problems arise when set-top boxes are jail broken by sellers, permitting access to unauthorized content. Users and sellers should beware of the potential copyright issues arising from such use. Read More

Purple is the New Orange: FDA Releases a Purple Book for Biosimilars

On September 9, 2014, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (“FDA”) published the first edition of the Purple Book: Lists of Licensed Biological Products with Reference Product Exclusivity and Biosimilarity or Interchangeability Evaluations (“Purple Book”). The Purple Book is the biological equivalent of the pharmaceutical Orange Book, and seeks to aid regulatory agents, generic manufacturers, and physicians by arming them with information related to biological products such as biosimilars including, for example, providing information regarding the interchangeability of products. Read More

Australian Patent Examination Reports Issuing Faster Than Expected in Some Technology Areas

Prior to commencement of the Intellectual Property Laws Amendment (Raising the Bar) Act 2012, which came into effect in April 2013, the Australian Patent Office was inundated with requests for examination from applicants wishing to have their applications examined under the current law.

This flood of examination requests led the Patent Office to last year advise that first examination reports would likely issue, on average, about 19 months after examination is requested. We have recently been advised by the Patent Office that the backlog of applications awaiting examination is starting to clear and that examination reports are now issuing, on average, about 16 months after examination is requested. Read More

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