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Legal updates

Spain
CTM Court: use of perfume trademarks to sell smell-alikes is unlawful
The Community Trademark Court Number 2 of Alicante has upheld an action filed by companies belonging to the perfume and fashion group Puig against several companies of the Saphir Group and a supermarket chain. The court, refusing to apply the ‘fair use’ exemption, held that the defendants took unfair advantage of the distinctive character and the repute of the plaintiffs’ trademarks by using the marks to sell their smell-alike perfumes.
Sweden
Students convicted for selling fake copies of Microsoft software
Two students have been convicted of trademark and copyright infringement by the Stockholm District Court for importing fake copies of Windows 7 and Microsoft Office and selling them through online marketplaces in Sweden and Norway. Among other things, the court held that the students' actions were “in the course of business” and that, therefore, they had an extended obligation to examine the origin and authenticity of the goods.
Venezuela
Uncertainty regarding applicability of international IP-related treaties
In 2008 the Venezuelan Trademark Office issued an opinion stating that the rules of the Andean Community were no longer applicable in the country, referring specifically to the Paris Convention, TRIPS and the Nice Agreement. However, it has recently been discovered that, according to the definition of 'collective marks' provided on the Trademark Office’s official website, collective marks are not governed by national law, but by the Paris Convention.

Blog

23 Apr 2015
Applicant for THE SLANTS trademark slams USPTO decision-making
The founder of the Asian American dance-rock band behind the application has slammed this week's appeal decision, telling World Trademark Review that he finds the USPTO's treatment of evidence “absurd”.
22 Apr 2015
EU trademark reform agreement receives tentative thumbs up from users
Following European ‘trilogue’ discussions yesterday, the European Parliament, Council and Commission have announced a provisional agreement on the European trademark package, meaning that the reforms are a significant step closer to being realised. While many aspects have been welcomed by user associations, the lack of detail on crucial aspects means that the ‘thumbs up’ remains a tentative one.
21 Apr 2015
IP impact of leaked Trans-Pacific Partnership chapter debated
Policymakers and academics are debating how certain provisions in a leaked draft of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal could affect IP-related laws, including those governing plain packaging of tobacco products, in Australia and other prospective member states.

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Playing the fame card in the Middle East and Africa

Protection for famous marks in the Middle East and Africa depends to an extent on national laws, but a growing body of case law in this area provides much-needed guidance for rights holders
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