Celebrating 15 years of the WTR Industry Awards; USPTO criticised for anti-fraud efforts; Gazprom Neft interview exclusive; and much more
Everything we covered on WTR over the past seven days – and all you need to know from the world of trademarks to set yourself up for the start of another busy week.
The Long Read
WTR’s annual Asia-Pacific deep dive is here, revealing 2020’s top corporate and law firm filers, major trends and everything in between.
Monday 16 August
We were pleased to announce the shortlist for the 2021 WTR Industry Awards, with winners to be unveiled next week.
Forty percent of industry leaders view the dizzying level of M&A activity in the non-legal IP services sector negatively, according to the latest WTR Trademark Elite Expert Panel survey.
The US Department of Commerce published a scathing report into the USPTO trademark registration process, claiming that it is “not effective” in preventing fraudulent or inaccurate registrations.
- Abstract golden colour of Lindt & Sprüngli’s chocolate bunny enjoys trademark protection after all (Germany)
- Google sues real estate developer over NEST® trademark (Ukraine)
Tuesday 17 August
A Spongebob trademark lawsuit, 50 Cent mocking Rémy Martin infringement claims and Sony buying Crunchyroll featured among Tuesday’s news stories.
We took a trip down memory lane, reflecting on the best bits of the WTR Industry Awards over the past 15 years.
Law firm experts in Russia exposed the digital marketplaces that all brand owners should monitor as part of global anti-counterfeiting efforts.
- General Court confirms likelihood of confusion between Ø and ϕ (European Union)
- Important developments regarding anti-counterfeiting - what brand owners need to know (Kenya)
Wednesday 18 August
We scrutinised the data behind the WTR Industry Awards to uncover the brands that have been most lauded since the annual event began.
Senior staff at the USPTO promised to fight back against suspicious trademark filings in response to the US Department of Commerce’s critical report.
Despite optimism over increases in brand investment, budget concerns mean that headcount is not expected to scale up to cope with rising workloads, exclusive WTR research found.
- The EAEU trademark is almost here – all documents are in force, but one technical issue remains (Russia)
- Alyssa v Alyssa: jewellery designer found liable for passing off (United Kingdom)
Thursday 19 August
The Canadian Intellectual Property Office continued its struggle with examination delays while the IP offices of Bulgaria and Finland faced closures and suspensions.
Past winners discussed how the WTR In-House Leader of the Year award helped to boost their career and what lies in store for post-pandemic practice.
Gazprom Neft head of trademarks Vadim Nyunyaev revealed how his team is breaking new ground in the Russian IP space, in an exclusive WTR interview.
- SHA v SHAPERFECTION: Opposition Division erred in finding that coinciding element played independent distinctive role (European Union)
- TTAB upholds fraud claim against distributor of massage chairs who registered manufacturer's mark (United States)
- Why domain consolidation and licensing are crucial for trademark protection (Industry report: Domain name policing and enforcement)
- Understanding the opposition process in Sao Tome and Principe’s IP legislation (International report: Africa)
- New agency to improve the enforcement of IP rights at the Mexican border (International report: Mexico)
- The Swiss response to the concerning issue of counterfeiting (International report: Switzerland)
- IP Court addresses who can benefit from prior-use defence (International report: Taiwan)
- Further success for Sky in SkyKick saga, as partial invalidity finding is overturned (International report: United Kingdom)
Friday 20 August
The examination backlog at CIPO worsens, INTA files an amicus brief to the Court of Justice of the European Union, the UK Intellectual Property Office changes its fee process, and much more in Friday’s news digest.
Coca-Cola’s brand strategy requires a balance of innovation, nurturing and knowing when to call it quits, according to WTR data analysis.
We spoke to three past winners of the prestigious WTR Lifetime Achievement Award to garner insights into the evolution of the industry.
- BUTTERMITE v VEGEMITE – a Mitey dispute (Australia)
- Pirates and rum: only an allusive and loose association, says the Swiss Federal Administrative Court (Switzerland)
Saturday 21 August
As evidence of the ineffectiveness of plain packaging grows, Axess Technologies chair Richard Jotcham argued that a less brand-restrictive alternative must be considered, in an exclusive Saturday opinion column.
WTR Special Report: Inside in-house operations
WTR’s latest Special Report, “Inside in-house operations: how to build world-class trademark functions and portfolios”, takes a deep dive into portfolio, brand and in-house team management – with insight from experts at companies including Facebook, FIFA, Novartis, Verizon and Vodafone.
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