Trademark-related quotes, opinions and observations from around the globe

“Brand restrictions are a growing concern. Plain packaging started with tobacco, but other industries, such as pharma, are now being implicated. Sandoz has a strong brand that we have invested in and we want to be able to use it. In some countries, there is advocacy for white packaging, which would not only be a blow for innovators, but for high quality generics like Sandoz.”

David Lossignol, global head of trademarks at Sandoz and the next INTA president, talks about his growing concern around brand restrictions (19 April 2018)

“The legal industry mirrors the equality shortfall. Women attend law school at the same rate as men, but over time are less present in the profession and reflect far less than half of leadership roles in firms, the judiciary, and companies. Across the board, data for women of colour consistently indicates even wider disparities. As we celebrate women’s creativity and innovation, we would be remiss to not acknowledge the unfair challenge visionary and inspiring women have sharing their gifts. We must evolve, so future generations of makers have it better.”

On World Intellectual Property Day – which this year had the theme ‘Powering change: Women in innovation and creativity’ – Makalika Naholowaa, a trademark attorney at Microsoft Corporation, reflected on diversity in the IP industry (26 April 2018)

“Clearly companies have been double filing, but there is no need for this. It is pretty clear at this stage that the UK will, after Brexit, create ‘child’ rights for EU trademarks and registered Community designs. This will likely be done automatically and for free.”

David Stone, head of Allen & Overy’s global brands group, on why the rush of Brexit-induced double filings is unnecessary (6 May 2018)

David Stone

“The inability or unwillingness of firms to adequately train associates raises the question of where the next generation of leading trademark lawyers will come from. It behoves law firm partners and the trademark industry in general to confront this potentially existential peril.”

Peter Sloane, chair of the trademark and copyright practice at Leason Ellis and vice chair of INTA’s Law Firm Committee, on training the next generation of lawyers (10 May 2018)

Peter Sloane

“Right now, we can harness algorithms to find fakes on marketplaces, but we can’t actually stop them – due to a lack of APIs, the automation stops at the analysis stage. Ultimately, the integration of systems is important in order to take advantage of automation and any other new innovations that companies like us develop. Therefore, the development of APIs by Alibaba (and other major marketplaces) would help brand owners protect their IP more efficiently and, in turn, better protect consumers from fakes.”

Reflecting on a new report released by Alibaba on its IP protection in 2017, Brandshield vice president of marketing and sales Itai Galmo claims that major marketplaces should develop API platforms to allow third-party takedowns (22 May 2018)

“There’s been so much speculation, so much fear-mongering, so much panic, we’ve spent the last six weeks just trying to get people to calm down. We’ve said that, yes, there may not be WHOIS, that’s not a good thing, we’d prefer that there was, but like everything in this space, it’s going to be an evolution and not a revolution. I got involved in ICANN around 2000, and at the time the big issue was WHOIS, and here we are in 2018 and the issue is WHOIS – maybe we need this very draconian approach to actually get to the proper solution to this, where there is the proper balancing of interests. Maybe we need this disaster to get to an actual solution to this 20-year-old problem. That’s what gives me a glimmer of hope, a ray of sunshine.”

On the day that the General Data Protection Regulation came into force, Gretchen Olive, director of policy and industry affairs at CSC, spoke to us about the challenges it will cause to obtain WHOIS data – and the ray of light that she sees despite these hurdles (29 May 2018)

Gretchen Olive

“By attacking strong trade allies – like the EU – the US is opening additional trade disputes while also weakening our position against China. On the other hand, if we [the US] were to partner with our global allies to pressure China, I think we would have better results in ending these unfair trade practices that are hurting businesses and the economy. Ultimately, counterfeiting affects the US and it affects the EU. But the main winner is China because their economy thrives on producing and exporting cheap counterfeit goods. It would be more effective for the US to address China’s unfair trade practices by banding together with our trade partners. Instead, we are now running the risk of alienating multiple allies.”

A spokesperson for the Precious Metals Association of North America had strong words to say about the Trump administration’s tariffs targeting traditional allies of the United States (5 June 2018)

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