Wragge Lawrence Graham and Co held its annual Brands & Designs Seminar in London on 25 June 2015. As you would expect, the Seminar was extremely informative and interesting, and well attended!
Kate Swaine kicked off proceedings by discussing the rise in passing off cases throughout the last year. Kate posed the question as to whether the recent increase in passing off cases was highlighting a new trend. She asked whether this was due to misrepresentation seemingly being easier to define than likelihood of confusion, the fact that a brand has now expanded considerably further than just a ‘name’ and celebrities are more conscious of their own brand power, as well as the apparent constraints of a trade mark registration, making passing off a more attractive option. (more…)
Last week saw the London meeting of the joint CIPA/IPO/IP Federation event relating to the consultation on court fees for the Unified Patent Court. What follows below are IPcopy’s notes on the event and consultation.
If you are planning on submitting a response to the consultation then you have until midnight 31 July 2015. The consultation document can be found here. Anyone who missed the consultation can take advantage of the video recording of the event here to review what was said. (more…)
In Ariosa Diagnostics, Inc. et al. v. Sequenom, Inc. et al., Nos. 2014-1139 and 2014-1144 (Fed. Cir. June 12, 2015), the Federal Circuit held that certain method claims of Sequenom’s U.S. Patent No. 6,258,540 (the ‘540 patent) are invalid as being directed to patent ineligible subject matter under 35 U.S.C. § 101. The Court concluded that the use of conventional methods for detecting a naturally occurring phenomenon did not transform the natural phenomenon into a patentable invention. Judge Reyna wrote the opinion for the panel, which included Judges Linn and Wallach. (more…)
The Supreme Court of the United States has handed down its decision in Kimble v Marvel Entertainment LLC on the issue of whether to overrule an earlier decision that held that patentees cannot receive royalties for sales made after the patent expires.
The short summary to this decision was that in SCOTUS’ view the court should adhere to the decision of Brulotte in which a post-patent royalty provision was regarded as “unlawful per se”. So, a victory for Marvel since they won’t have to continue making royalty payments to Stephen Kimble who came up with the idea behind the invention at the centre of the case.
What makes this decision a little more interesting however is that the case involved a Spider-man toy (in particular a “web-slinger” glove that allows its wearer to shot foam webs from their hands, the Web Blaster Spider-Man toy) and the judge (Justice Kagan) was clearly (i) a bit of a superhero nerd and (ii) having some fun in the decision. (more…)
Another week, another UPC related update from the good folks at the UKIPO plus a short update on the unitary patent fee proposal from the EPO. (more…)
Innovate UK is offering up to a £5,000 voucher for your business. Great! You’ll be able to get a good 100 pens from WHSmiths for that. Except unfortunately (well, probably fortunately), this is not a voucher you can spend in WHSmith, or any other stationery shop.
Innovate UK is offering the (up to) £5,000 voucher to start-up, micro, small and medium-sized businesses to spend on finding an expert to help with your idea or design, or to buy time and support for specialist equipment. The winning businesses are selected from a lottery draw out of the initial successful applications, with 100 vouchers available each round and four rounds per year. (more…)
Today we have a little tip for anyone who has run into difficulties locating a patent or patent application that is mentioned in the context of a product being marketed under the words “patent pending”, “patented” or similar. Sometimes it is easy to locate the patent property in question because, for example, the company offering the product/service is also the patent owner. Sometimes however it can be difficult to find the correct patent property.
This may be because the company in question owns thousands of patents and patent applications (good luck for example identifying all the patent filings made in relation to the Apple Watch). However, in some cases this is because the company selling the “patented” product/service is not the patent owner.
Perhaps the patent/patent application is held by a different company in the same company group or perhaps the inventors own the patents. In such circumstances what else can be done to try and locate the patent/patent application in question? (more…)
Keltie Events in June and July. Keltie LLP is pleased to be hosting a number of events over the next few weeks at our new offices at No. 1 London Bridge. Further details are below regarding (i) IP Clinics for London Technology Week; (ii) a 3D printing workshop for in-house counsel; and (iii) a Designs workshop for in-house counsel. (more…)
What’s the weirdest technology/IP related celebrity endorsement you’ve seen? This was the question that popped into IPcopy’s mind this morning when one of our work proximity associates messaged us from their holiday in San Francisco to tell us they’d seen an advert on TV of George Foreman promoting an inventor service company (advert below). (more…)
In the final article in this Intellectual Property (“IP”) series, we look at the protection and commercialisation of brands or trade marks.
Trade marks are business identifiers which are generally comprised of one or a combination of the following elements: words, logos, slogans and even colours, shapes and sounds. Generally, anything in which your business has acquired goodwill and acts as an indication of trade origin can be considered a trade mark.
It is recommended to protect those trade marks of value to your business by registering them at the IP offices of the countries of commercial interest. Trade mark registrations provide prima facie evidence of a business’ rights in a mark and ensure that business is able to prevent third parties causing confusion in the marketplace, or taking advantage of its goodwill in its mark, by using an identical or similar trade mark.
Once in place, trade mark registrations can also be licensed or assigned to generate revenue for your business and are valuable business assets. (more…)