Blog results - found 117
With the first US government shutdown in 17 years entering its third week, attempts to find a remedy before tomorrow’s deadline for raising the debt limit continue apace. At present, the USPTO has continued operations relatively unaffected but, should a solution not be found by the end of next week (or should a short-term solution lead to later shutdowns), the prospect of the office closing its doors will become a reality. So how big an impact would it have on trademark counsel?
OHIM and WIPO used the MARQUES conference in Monte Carlo as a platform to outline plans for future expansion, in terms of both existing offerings and wider remits.
Proposed changes to the European trademark framework were recently launched to much fanfare. As trademark practitioners digest the proposals, attention naturally turns to the likely timeframe for change. However, delegates at the ECTA annual conference were told that there are still hurdles to overcome not least achieving consensus over the “serious disagreement” on “important aspects of the package” from some member states.
Last week WTR sat down with representatives of Colombia, Mexico and New Zealand’s IP offices. All three have acceded to the Madrid system in the past 12 months and spoke positively about the transition. However, prior to acceding some resistance was experienced from domestic private practitioners fearful of the impact that a one-stop international registration shop could have on their own prosecution practice. The message from the Philippines national office? Change is good and can actually provide a boost to local firms.
When today’s live stream of the European Commission’s presentation of proposals to revise the existing EU legislation on trademarks was cancelled at the last minute, it seemed that further delays might be on the cards. However, the Commission has now issued a statement on its “package of initiatives to make trademark registration systems all over the European Union cheaper, quicker, more reliable and predictable”, with the stated goal of adopting the amended Fees Regulation by the end of 2013.
International trademark applications filed under the Madrid system grew by 4.1% in 2012, with Novartis AG topping the list of applicants. This continues the upward trend reported in 2011, despite the continued economic difficulties in many jurisdictions. The challenge for trademark counsel is ensuring that senior management recognise the long-term enterprise value such work facilitates.
Last month WTR presented analysis of leaked documents detailing proposed changes to the European trademark framework (including amendments to the Community Trademark Regulation (207/2009), a recasting of the Trademarks Directive and an overhaul of the filing fees regime), as well as initial industry reaction. Today MARQUES issued a lengthy 24-page information note on the documents, providing a user perspective and detailing the good, the bad and the missing aspects of the proposals.
WTR previously provided an overview of three documents detailing proposed changes to the European trademark framework, including amendments to the Community Trademark Regulation (207/2009), a recasting of the Trademarks Directive and an overhaul of the filing fees regime. Since writing the blog, it appears that more practitioners have obtained the documents, allowing WTR to obtain some reaction to the disclosed detail.
Almost two years after the Max Planck Institute published its Study on the Overall Functioning of the European Trademark System, details of proposed changes to the European framework are emerging. According to the latest draft documents obtained by WTR, a re-named OHIM, lower fees and the introduction of European certification marks are all on the cards.
In its efforts to acquire and resurrect expired trademarks, a California-based company is calling for reform of the USPTO’s handling of specimens of use. Is the system really broken or do current processes strike the right balance between trust and suspicion?
Last week, WTR reported on the news that David Kappos, Director of the USPTO, is to step down from his post next month. While no official announcement has yet been issued, this week saw the release of the agency’s performance and accountability report for fiscal year 2012, which identified some of the challenges awaiting his successor.
David Kappos, under secretary of commerce for intellectual property and director of the USPTO, is to leave the office by the end of January 2013. The reasons for his decision, which came to light last night, are sketchy at present Kappos informed staff by email of his decision to leave the office but, at the time of writing, no official statement has been released by the agency. All eyes will now be on possible replacements and the impact he or she may have for trademark practitioners.
OHIM has announced an organisational shake-up which brings its Academy under the Observatory’s umbrella, with Paul Maier heading up the new section. The move comes as plans continue apace for the Observatory’s first work programme.
In a decision which further illustrates the challenges in obtaining protection for animal-shaped chocolate and provides guidance on figurative elements built into three-dimensional (3D) shapes - the Court of Justice of the European Union (ECJ) today backed the General Court in its treatment of August Storck KG’s application for a Community trademark (CTM) for a 3D chocolate mouse shape.
With the summer holiday season over, trademark opportunists are quickly getting back to work. MARQUES has circulated a warning over the latest trademark solicitation campaign but, while scams and solicitations are a rising problem, there are steps trademark counsel can take to minimise the risk of paying for services they don't necessarily need.
It seems like the worlds of politics and intellectual property have clashed on an almost weekly basis in 2012 and this week the trend continued taking time out from his own trademark battle, President Obama signed into law an act that strengthens the penalties for trafficking in counterfeit drugs. Meanwhile, over the road from the White House, the House Foreign Affairs Committee launched an investigation into allegations that WIPO supplied computers and other sensitive technology to Iran and North Korea.
In January 2010 a ruling of the Benelux Office of Intellectual Property threw the debate over what constitutes genuine use of a mark in the European Union onto centre stage. Now Advocate General Sharpston has issued her opinion on the issue, taking the position that use of a CTM in one member state can constitute genuine use in the Community but not necessarily.
In the month that the full list of gTLD applications was made public, it is perhaps unsurprising that stories focusing on developments in the online world dominated the top 10 most-read blogs on WTR in June. Top of the list by some way was a pre-reveal day story that considered how the applicant list should be assessed and approached.
WTR has previously reported on the US Department of Commerce’s report identifying the sectors that generate the most IP and the positive impact of those sectors on the US economy. Speaking in Cascais, Portugal, António Campinos, president of OHIM, revealed that OHIM and the European Patent Office are working to produce such a study for Europe, with the results expected to be available by the end of 2013.
OHIM has speedily responded to yesterday’s ECJ ruling in the IP TRANSLATOR case, repealing Communication 4/03 and clarifying the treatment of both existing CTM trademark and pending/future applications.
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