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A corporate trademark function needs to be well positioned in order to best serve its internal clients, communicate with colleagues in other departments and reach the ear of senior management. But as trademark counsel from several different sectors reveal, there is no one-size-fits-all solution
WTR looks back on the key learnings from this year’s International Trademark Association annual meeting, held in Washington DC
It is difficult to know how best to reach out to the public on counterfeiting: apathy and scepticism seem to be growing, yet educational initiatives can appear a luxury in the current economic climate. But consumer engagement can be critical to an effective anticounterfeiting strategy
With external counsel under acute pressure to provide a wider range of services at more cost-effective price points, trademark law firms and practitioners are increasingly seeking to differentiate themselves on the market. Are brands the answer?
From gTLD risks and social media exploitation to brand resilience and the benefits of a fluid approach: inside INTA 2013
WTR looks back at the practical takeaways from this year’s International Trademark Association annual meeting, held in Dallas, Texas
When New Zealand decided it was time to showcase its entrepreneurial credentials on the world stage, it needed an equally proactive approach towards protecting its intellectual property. That is where the New Zealand Story begins
Many brand owners are turning to external corporate investigators in order to follow the tracks of increasingly shrewd and elusive counterfeiters. Hiring an investigator can be a very effective part of an anticounterfeiting strategy and need not cost the earthso long as the brand owner knows what to look for
Now in its fifth year, the WTR Global Benchmarking Survey takes the pulse of the industry. While it is true that the hard times are far from over, some positives have come out of adversity not least a greater corporate appreciation of trademark value. But there’s still plenty of work to be done
The drive to cut costs has led some companies to downsize their trademark team or to dismantle it altogether and transfer its responsibilities to the wider IP or legal department. WTR asks three in-house practitioners to consider the arguments for and against a dedicated corporate trademark function
While investors are well aware of the power of a strong brand, they may have little appreciation of the critical role that trademarks play in building brand value. Trademark counsel can help by framing their work in a way that investors will understand; but to do so requires a step into the unknown for many
Vast majority of listed Australian IP firm clients think reduction of private ownership is against their interests
Australia has led the way in adoption of the public traded company model for IP law and attorney practices. But the findings of recent market research indicate that more than three-quarters of these firms’ clients believe that a reduction of private ownership in the sector is against their interests again stoking critics’ concerns about the business model’s ethical implications and its impact on client-counsel relationships.
JD.com becomes first Chinese marketplace to join AAFA; promises "cooperation with international fashion brands"
One of the largest online marketplaces in China, JD.com, has signed up to the American Apparel & Footwear Association with a pledge to partner with international fashion brands “on issues surrounding IP protection”. While it celebrates being the first Chinese e-commerce company to become a certified member of the association, some may see parallels between this move and Alibaba’s brief membership of the International Anti-counterfeiting Coalition which, nearly a year ago to the day, resulted in considerable kickback from members.
Leaks indicate victory for Australia in seminal WTO plain packaging dispute a knockout blow for tobacco brands
A dispute resolution panel of the World Trade Organisation has reportedly ruled in favour of Australia in a complaint brought by a number of countries, including several major tobacco exporters, against its plain packaging policy. While the world awaits public confirmation of the decision, the early leaks suggest a significant blow has been dealt to tobacco brand owners.
Pakistan recently added new IP provisions into its 2001 Customs Rules which are broadly expected to improve enforcement outcomes for brand owners importing goods into the country. The regulatory update comes amid a range of reforms that have been aimed at enhancing IP rights protections in Pakistan.
A recent judgment handed down by the Taiwan IP Court has highlighted how rights holders must act quickly if they believe their trademarks are being infringed or risk losing their ability to claim compensation.
Hong Kong moves closer to tobacco plain packaging; street vendors voice disappointment and anger, threaten protest
The Hong Kong government tabled a law yesterday that will substantially increase the size of mandatory health warnings on tobacco products and leave the autonomous territory a step away from full-blown ‘plain packaging’. The developments have led to complaints from tobacco vendors, which claim that they will lose business as consumers switch to counterfeits and grey-market cigarettes as a result of the changes.
Brand owners “are not taking appropriate steps to stop counterfeiting”, claims Indian regional official
A minister from the government of the Indian state of West Bengal has called on trademark owners to be more diligent in reporting suspected counterfeiting to local authorities, arguing that many “do not take it up seriously” when it comes to fighting fakes.
While the Japan Patent Office registered more trademarks last year than it has in almost a decade, new data indicates that it is also taking more time than ever before to decide whether applications should be granted or refused.
Chinese entities now own almost half of all new generic top-level domain (gTLD) registrations, with nine of the top 10 new gTLD registrants associated with the country, according to recent reports. With another tranche of gTLDs just approved for sale by the Chinese government, many brand owners will be concerned about what this all means for their trademark protection strategies.
Halving of Chinese trademark fees provides immediate costs benefit for counsel, but raises squatting concerns
Reversing a trend towards increases seen across several Asian jurisdictions of late, the China Trademark Office of the State Administration of Industry and Commerce has slashed user fees by half. While the reduction is welcome in terms of budgets, many trademark counsel will be concerned about a potential increase in indirect enforcement costs should squatters try to take advantage of the lower fees.
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