European Union - In Boehringer Ingelheim International GmbH v OHIM, the General Court has upheld a decision of the Board of Appeal of OHIM rejecting an international registration designating the European Community for the word mark RELY-ABLE for services in Classes 38, 41 and 42. Among other things, the court found that, as the misspelling of the word ‘reliable’ was deliberate and obvious, the relevant public would immediately understand it to mean ‘reliable’.
Australia - The decision of the Australian Trademarks Office in Toddler Kindy Gymbaroo Pty Ltd v Gym-Mark Inc gives some clarity as to what is required in order to establish use in the course of trade. Among other things, the delegate highlighted that using a trademark on, or in relation to, a good that is used in the course of operating one’s business is not the same as using a trademark in relation to those goods 'in the course of trade'.
International - In a recent domain name dispute under the UDRP, the panel has provided a noteworthy illustration of the well-established principle that the use of a domain name consisting of dictionary terms may constitute a legitimate use, even if such domain name is identical to a trademark.
International - This week a legal challenge, and its subsequent withdrawal, against a fan-run website dedicated to hazelnut chocolate spread Nutella has been generating media headlines. With the cease and desist letter in question being labelled a ‘routine defence procedure’, the incident highlights the need to carefully weigh enforcement strategies on a case-by-case basis.
Trevor Little | May 22 2013
United Kingdom - The High Court of England and Wales has ruled in the long-running AdWords dispute between Interflora and Marks & Spencer (M&S). While finding that M&S’ use of the INTERFLORA mark as an AdWord to advertise its M&S Flowers & Gifts website was trademark infringement, the decision will be limited in its application as the dispute hinged on particular circumstances.
Trevor Little | May 22 2013
United States - Software company Fortres Grand’s claim that a fictional product appearing in Warner Bros film The Dark Knight Rises infringes on its trademark rights has been dismissed by a Northern District of Indiana court. However, the potential problem of fictional product names that are the same or similar to real-life brand names could arise for any trademark owner and the dispute offers a number of takeaways.
Jack Ellis | May 21 2013
Olivares & Cia.
ASTP Annual Conference
MARQUES, which was founded in 1987, is the association of European trademark owners.
MARQUES represents trademark owners’ interests before the relevant EU and other international bodies in all relevant areas. It also organizes networking and educational events and promotes communication between brand owners in Europe.
The MARQUES website provides a wide range of information and general IP resources of use to both trademark owners and legal practitioners.