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Legal updates

02 Sep 2014

Why Thredbo is no Disneyland: the difficulty with using geographic places as brand names

Australia - The decision of the Full Federal Court in Kosciuszko Thredbo Pty Limited v ThredboNet Marketing Pty Limited has illustrated that, where geographic or descriptive names are being used by multiple traders, if one trader makes disclaimers disavowing any affiliation with others, the presence of that disclaimer could avoid a contravention of the Australian Consumer Law or passing off - even if consumers are confused between traders. Read update

02 Sep 2014

Expedited examination of trademark applications abrogated

Romania - Further to Government Ordinance 28/2014, the expedited examination of national trademark applications and the corresponding official fee have been abrogated. Article 22, Paragraph 2 of the Law on Trademarks and Geographical Indications, which provided for the expedited examination of applications, is thus no longer applicable. Read update

02 Sep 2014

Counterfeiter's registration for confusingly similar mark cancelled

Peru - The Peruvian Trademark Office has ordered the cancellation of the stylised trademark MIROCA M on the ground that it was confusingly similar to the stylised trademarks WILSON and W, registered in the name of Wilson Sporting Goods Co. When goods bearing the MIROCA M had been seized, the owner of the goods had sought to rely on the fact that she held a valid trademark registration. Read update

01 Sep 2014

Changing down a gear: prestige brand opts for bargain basement court

United Kingdom - The IPEC has found in favour of BMW, the owner of the MINI mark, ruling that there was a genuine risk that the website at ‘www.minigearbox.co.uk’ would be perceived as either an official BMW website or as having been licensed or authorised by BMW. However, in light of earlier proceedings between the parties, one may wonder why BMW did not seek a fine or imprisonment for contempt of court. Read update

01 Sep 2014

IP protection in Ukraine and Russia in light of Crimean conflict

International - On July 22 2014 the Ukrainian Patent and Trademark Office held a roundtable on issues related to IP protection in Crimea, a former Ukrainian region annexed by Russia in March. The discussion centred on the legal status of IP rights owners and the protection of IP rights in Crimea. On the same date, Russia’s president Vladimir Putin signed a law regulating IP protection in Crimea. Read update

01 Sep 2014

Mark owner forfeits rights in domain name by waiting eight years to file complaint

Switzerland - A WIPO panellist has refused to order the transfer of the domain name 'ergoline-service.ch' to JK-Holding, the owner of the ERGOLINE mark. Among other things, the panellist held that JK-Holding had forfeited its rights, if any, by waiting for eight years to file the complaint after becoming aware of the allegedly infringing use. Read update

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