Tag: Litigation

1
Mind the Gap: Patagonia Sues Gap For Copying Fleece Design
2
Cadbury’s Purple Reign: High Court Allows Cadbury to Register Their Iconic Purple Colouring
3
Swatch v Samsung: App Store Operators are Not Intermediaries and Can be Liable for Trade Mark Infringement
4
High Court Split 3-3 in Landmark Decision on the Patentability of Computer Implemented Inventions in Australia
5
Lovely Jubbly? Fictional characters are capable of copyright protection in the UK
6
Developers Denied Double Dipping Damages
7
New Interim Guidance on Fintiv Factors
8
Indirect Patent Infringement Down Under
9
“Levitating” Lawsuits: Understanding Dua Lipa’s Copyright Infringement Troubles
10
Federal Circuit Rules AAPA in Challenged Patent Does Not Qualify as Prior Art Under 35 U.S.C § 311(b) but Signals AAPA Can Play Role in §103 Analysis

Mind the Gap: Patagonia Sues Gap For Copying Fleece Design

High-end outdoor clothing brand Patagonia Inc is taking on fast fashion retailer Gap for copying its “iconic” fleece jacket design. Patagonia Inc has filed court proceedings in the Federal Court.

In a complaint filed on 22 November 2022, Patagonia alleges that Gap willfully and deliberately copied the fleece design through the creation and sale of its “Mockneck Pullover” jackets, mimicking the flap pocket and rectangular logo of Patagonia’s classic “Snap-T” fleece jackets (shown below).

Patagonia “Snap-T” Pullover Fleece
Gap Product
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Cadbury’s Purple Reign: High Court Allows Cadbury to Register Their Iconic Purple Colouring

Cadbury has proven the adage that perseverance is the key to success as their continued and well-document pursuit over the registration of the colour purple has finally seen success in Société des Produits Nestlé S.A. v Cadbury UK Limited [2022] EWHC 1671 (Ch). The UK High Court has partially upheld the Cadbury appeal over UKIPO’s previous 2019 decision. Hopefully, this will bring clarity to businesses wishing to register colour marks instead of creating further ambiguity around the registrability requirements of colour marks and other non-traditional marks.

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Swatch v Samsung: App Store Operators are Not Intermediaries and Can be Liable for Trade Mark Infringement

The High Court of Justice of England & Wales has recently held Samsung liable for trade mark infringement for watch faces sold on the Samsung Galaxy App store (“Samsung’s Store”) and infringing Swatch Group’s trade mark rights. The judgement provides useful guidance on intermediary liability specifically regarding app store operators.

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High Court Split 3-3 in Landmark Decision on the Patentability of Computer Implemented Inventions in Australia

The High Court has issued its eagerly awaited decision in Aristocrat Technologies Australia Pty Ltd v Commissioner of Patents [2022] HCA 29 (Aristocrat). Six High Court Justices presided over the appeal from the Full Federal Court of Australia (Full Court Decision), which we wrote about in November 2021. The High Court was split 3-3, meaning the appeal was dismissed and Aristocrat’s patent application will not proceed to grant.

The split decision leaves the question of the patentability of computer implemented inventions (CIIs) somewhat unresolved in Australia.

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Lovely Jubbly? Fictional characters are capable of copyright protection in the UK

Considering the UK’s rich history of literature, it may be somewhat surprising to know that there was very little case law discussing whether copyright might subsist in a fictional character. However, on 8 June 2022, the UK courts finally tackled whether a fictional character can be protected under copyright law in Shazam Productions Ltd v Only Fools The Dining Experience Ltd & Ors [2022] EWHC 1379 (IPEC).

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Developers Denied Double Dipping Damages

The rule against double recovery, which operates to ensure plaintiffs are not compensated twice in respect of the same loss, is well-known and generally arises for judicial consideration where there are joint and several tortfeasors. The recent decision of Look Design and Development Pty Ltd v Edge Developments Pty Ltd & Flaton [2022] QDC 116 by Judge Long SC of the District Court of Queensland considered the rule against double recovery in the context of separate proceedings against different defendants. This case confirms that where damages for copyright infringement are compensatory, the fact that a plaintiff has already received an amount of damages from one infringer will serve to reduce the damages payable by the other.

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New Interim Guidance on Fintiv Factors

On 21 June 2022, the United States Patent and Trademark office (USPTO) issued interim guidance on how the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) should exercise its discretion when determining whether to institute a post-grant proceeding.

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Indirect Patent Infringement Down Under

The issue of contributory infringement of a patent under the Australian Patents Act 1990 (Act) does not often arise for consideration by the Australian judicial system. When it does arise, the question of whether or not the product supplied is a ‘staple commercial product’ under the relevant provisions of the Act is always of particular interest.

In only a few cases has the impugned product been held to be a staple commercial product, and so any case that expands upon that product class is a particularly valuable aid. It is therefore of interest that the Full Court of the Australian Federal Court has recently considered contributory infringement in Hood v Down Under Enterprises International Pty Limited [2022] FCAFC 69.

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“Levitating” Lawsuits: Understanding Dua Lipa’s Copyright Infringement Troubles

Even global stardom will not make copyright woes levitate away from British superstar Dua Lipa. The pop icon is making headlines following a week of back-to-back, bi-coastal lawsuits alleging copyright infringement with her hit “Levitating.” First, on Tuesday March 1st, members of reggae band Artikal Sound System sued Dua Lipa for copyright infringement in a Los Angeles federal district court1. Then, on Friday March 4th, songwriters L. Russell Brown and Sandy Linzer filed their own copyright infringement lawsuit against the pop star in a New York federal district court2. Both lawsuits were filed claiming violations of the Copyright Act, 17 U.S.C. §§ 101 et seq.3

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Federal Circuit Rules AAPA in Challenged Patent Does Not Qualify as Prior Art Under 35 U.S.C § 311(b) but Signals AAPA Can Play Role in §103 Analysis

On 1 February 2022, the Federal Circuit released its decision in Qualcomm v. Apple1 providing guidance on the treatment of Applicant Admitted Prior Art (AAPA) under 35 U.S.C § 311(b) in Inter Partes Review (IPR) proceedings. In doing so, the Federal Circuit vacated two IPR decisions2 of the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB) where the PTAB had found several claims of U.S. Patent No. 8,063,674 (“the ’674 patent”) unpatentable under 35 U.S.C. § 103. In doing so, the Federal Circuit remanded the case to allow the PTAB to address the specific issue of whether the AAPA cited by Apple improperly formed the “basis” of Apple’s § 103 challenge or was simply ancillary.

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