United Kingdom

What the UK government’s Brexit deal defeat means for trademark owners

The UK government suffered a catastrophic defeat on Tuesday night after the House of Commons firmly rejected its Brexit deal. We take a look at what the result means for trademark owners, including a claim that rights holders are “back at square one".

What the UK government’s Brexit deal defeat means for trademark owners
15 Jan 2019

Supermac’s trademark victory over McDonald’s is a “warning” to major brands

In a landmark judgment, Irish fast food chain Supermac’s has prevailed in a dispute with McDonald’s over the use of the BIG MAC trademark.

7 Jan 2019

Reports of PIPCU’s demise greatly exaggerated as UKIPO commits to future funding

Over the weekend, a national media outlet reported that plans to fund the City of London Police’s Intellectual Property Crime Unit beyond June 2019 have “fallen through”. However, WTR can reveal that the unit is planning for the future.

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16 Jan 2019

Sky skewers Samsung in 'Q' case

The UK Intellectual Property Office has upheld an opposition filed by Sky, the owner of a figurative mark intended to be seen as ‘Q’, against the registration by Samsung of a mark representing the letter ‘Q’. Read more

8 Jan 2019

Protecting and enforcing design rights: United Kingdom

There is a clear legal distinction between the ‘monopoly right’ in a registered design and the ‘right to prevent copying’ of an unregistered design. Read more

7 Jan 2019

Cadbury’s colour purple mark can’t be split - clarity and precision are the winners in the Court of Appeal

In a significant blow to Cadbury, the Court of Appeal of England and Wales has rejected the confectionary giant’s argument that its trademark registration for the colour purple was actually a series mark which could be split and partially maintained. Read more

4 Jan 2019

Trolls on the rise, Brexit disruption and China’s domination: data trends of 2018

Having just rung in the new year, it is the perfect time to look at the trends which have characterised the trademark landscape in 2018, and discuss what is to come in 2019. Read more

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Anti-counterfeiting

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21 Sep 2018

Deep dive into Apple counterfeit fight, Skripal poison pair trademark, and most valuable UK brands: news round-up

In our latest edition, we look at China and Singapore partnering up for an IP initiative, another trademark scam highlighted, a German court dealing a blow to ICANN, and much more. Read more

15 Sep 2018

Social media buy-and-sell groups to be targeted in anti-counterfeiting initiative backed by UK government

A new programme has been developed in the UK to create greater awareness amongst the administrators of 'buy-and-sell' social media groups about their legal responsibility to prevent the promotion and sale of counterfeit goods. Read more

13 Jun 2018

“Rights holders will be disappointed”: UK Supreme Court sides with ISPs in Cartier case

The UK Supreme Court has handed down its decision in the Cartier website blocking case, siding with internet service providers (ISPs) and ruling that brand owners should indemnify ISPs for the costs of implementing blocking injunctions.  Read more

24 May 2018

A global approach to anti-counterfeiting

The reality is that as the counterfeiting market expands, brands will never be able to eliminate every single instance of it. However, it is not necessarily a losing battle. Instead, it requires a change of focus. Read more

Brand management

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20 Nov 2018

“Whatever Brexit looks like, it’s going to cost businesses money”: exclusive interview with Antony Douglass of Specsavers

Antony Douglass, legal director at Specsavers, sits down with WTR to explain the benefits of in-sourced portfolio management, reflects on Brexit, restricted WHOIS, and much more. Read more

18 Sep 2018

Get the inside track on cost-effectively managing trademark portfolios

WTR is pleased to announce that Managing Trademark Assets Europe will be heading to London on 28 January 2019. The event will present cutting-edge strategies for the creation, protection and monetisation of strong brands. Read more

18 Sep 2018

Crazy or canny? Tesco trademark ‘misstep’ may actually be a conscious commercial decision

Supermarket chain Tesco has been the focus of media coverage due to the lack of registered trademark protection for its new discount store brand Jack's, a move described as “absolute madness”. However, the reality is a more nuanced. Read more

23 Aug 2018

“A chef’s name is a trademark” – dispute highlights brand protection risks in the fine dining restaurant industry

An ongoing trademark dispute between an award-winning chef and his former employer has highlighted the issue of brand protection in the fine dining sector. Read more

Enforcement and litigation

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8 Jan 2019

Protecting and enforcing design rights: United Kingdom

There is a clear legal distinction between the ‘monopoly right’ in a registered design and the ‘right to prevent copying’ of an unregistered design. Read more

7 Jan 2019

Cadbury’s colour purple mark can’t be split - clarity and precision are the winners in the Court of Appeal

In a significant blow to Cadbury, the Court of Appeal of England and Wales has rejected the confectionary giant’s argument that its trademark registration for the colour purple was actually a series mark which could be split and partially maintained. Read more

5 Dec 2018

“A significant blow for Cadbury” – UK Court of Appeal decision puts purple trademark at risk

According to experts, the decision at the UK Court of Appeal leaves Cadbury's purple trademark “vulnerable” and could spur competitor Nestlé to consider options in terms of cancelling the registration. Read more

27 Nov 2018

Leicester City scores win against Leeds in trademark dispute, but misfires in bad faith claim

Recent English Premier League champions Leicester City FC has been successful in a trademark opposition against lower league Leeds City FC. Read more

Goverment/policy

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10 Sep 2018

Trademark procedures and strategies: United Kingdom

In the United Kingdom, any legal or natural person can apply for registered trademark protection, provided they declare that the mark is being used by them, or with their consent, or there is a genuine intention to use the mark for the goods and services specified. Read more

3 Sep 2018

“Negative for business and consumers” – GI association slams Brexit negotiations and possible no-deal scenario

oriGIn has released a strongly-worded statement calling for Brexit negotiators on both sides to preserve GIs as part of the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union. Read more

19 Jul 2018

UK government White Paper on future UK-EU relationship: small number of IP issues considered

The UK government’s White Paper on the future UK-EU relationship includes a limited number of proposals relating to intellectual property. Among other things, the United Kingdom will establish its own GI scheme.   Read more

18 Jul 2018

UK government White Paper on future UK-EU relationship: small number of IP issues considered

The UK government’s White Paper on the future UK-EU relationship includes a limited number of proposals relating to intellectual property. Among other things, the United Kingdom will establish its own GI scheme. Read more

Law firms

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17 Dec 2018

Building for the future

Trademark practices of the future will be very different to those of today. We take a look at what law firms can – and should – do to ensure that they stay ahead of the game. Read more

7 Sep 2018

The fall of the own-name defence

The ability to raise the own-name defence in Europe is about to come to an end. This article examines the consequences of recent own-name legislative changes for businesses in Europe. Read more

11 Apr 2018

Advertising Standards Authority ruling could have far-reaching implications for UK trademark law firm marketing

​​​​​​​The UK’s Advertising Standards Authority has ruled that Trade Mark Direct cannot claim to be the country’s ‘leading’ or ‘number one’ trademark firm. The decision could lead to a major shift in how firms market themselves in the UK, claims the company's founder. Read more

5 Apr 2018

“No surprise” – significant gender pay gap reported at UK law firms with highly rated trademark practices

World Trademark Review can reveal that UK law firms with highly ranked trademark practices pay women an hourly rate that is, on average, 28.7% lower than male colleagues. One industry expert says there is “much work still to be done” to tackle inequality in the legal industry. Read more

IP offices

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2 Oct 2018

“The EUIPO should lead on enforcement” – trademark community reacts to Archambeau appointment

National IP offices within the European Union, key trademark associations and leading filing law firms in the EU react to the appointment of Christian Archambeau as the new executive director of the EUIPO. Read more

25 Sep 2018

UK confirms post-Brexit trademark plans; ambiguities and uncertainties remain

UK government releases a swathe of technical notices that set out likely scenarios in the event of a ‘no-deal Brexit’. When it comes to trademark and design rights, significant questions remain. Read more

23 Jul 2018

Is the Brexit fog lifting? UKIPO confirms plan for “free” conversion of EU trademarks to UK register

In newly-released comments, the UKIPO has confirmed that the UK will protect all existing EU trademarks and registered Community designs when the country leaves the EU. Crucially, the transfer of 1.5 million rights will be automatic and free-of-charge. Read more

13 Jul 2018

"No closer to clarity" – UK's Brexit White Paper offers clues to future IP approach, but big questions remain

In the UK government's much-anticipated blueprint for the UK’s future relationship with the EU, IP rights are specifically addressed, but trademark practitioners will be left with many unanswered questions. Read more

Online

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18 Jun 2018

UK Supreme Court Cartier judgment: who pays for website blocking orders?

In a blow for rights holders, in Cartier International AG v British Telecommunications Plc the UK Supreme Court has decided that internet service providers should not bear the implementation costs for website blocking orders. Read more

24 May 2018

Platform immunity under the microscope: cooperation is the best way forward

Online operators such as eBay, Facebook, Instagram and Amazon find themselves under the microscope. They have become hugely successful organisations, but their platforms are often misused by those infringing rights or promoting bad locations. Read more

17 Apr 2018

Brexit: impact on UK-based proprietors of ‘.eu’ domain names

UK-based owners of '.eu' domain names should take note of the European Commission’s "Notice to stakeholders: withdrawal of the United Kingdom and EU rules on '.eu' domain names". Read more

22 Mar 2018

Which courts have jurisdiction over claim for online infringement of EUTM? Court of Appeal seeks guidance from ECJ

The Court of Appeal of England and Wales has considered which member state's courts would have jurisdiction to hear a claim for infringement of an EUTM where an online advertisement created in one member state targeted consumers in another. Read more

Portfolio management

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7 Nov 2018

Hasbro retains MONOPOLY trademark

The registrar of the UK Intellectual Property Office has dismissed an application to revoke Hasbro’s trademark registration for MONOPOLY on the ground that the mark had not been put to genuine use. Read more

18 Sep 2018

Get the inside track on cost-effectively managing trademark portfolios

WTR is pleased to announce that Managing Trademark Assets Europe will be heading to London on 28 January 2019. The event will present cutting-edge strategies for the creation, protection and monetisation of strong brands. Read more

13 Sep 2018

Massimo Osti v Global Design: should a claim be issued in the IPEC or the High Court?  

The decision in Massimo Osti v Global Design shows that the choice of bringing a case in the Intellectual Property Enterprise Court or the High Court of England and Wales is not always within the control of the claimant. Read more

5 Sep 2018

Frank Industries v Nike: IPEC takes modern approach to assessment of consumer perception

In Frank Industries Pty Ltd v Nike Retail BV, the Intellectual Property Enterprise Court in London has found that Nike had infringed Frank Industries' trademark registrations for LNDR by using the sign LDNR in an advertising campaign. Read more

Trademark law

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2 Jan 2019

Brexit in focus: end-of-year review from the UKIPO

While Brexit has been the primary focus of many practitioners in the United Kingdom, the UK Intellectual Property Office witnessed various other changes and developments in 2018. Read more

5 Dec 2018

“A significant blow for Cadbury” – UK Court of Appeal decision puts purple trademark at risk

According to experts, the decision at the UK Court of Appeal leaves Cadbury's purple trademark “vulnerable” and could spur competitor Nestlé to consider options in terms of cancelling the registration. Read more

27 Nov 2018

Leicester City scores win against Leeds in trademark dispute, but misfires in bad faith claim

Recent English Premier League champions Leicester City FC has been successful in a trademark opposition against lower league Leeds City FC. Read more

15 Nov 2018

“No clarity on continued rights of representation”: trademark experts have their say on the draft Brexit withdrawal text

While uncertainty over the future of the agreed Brexit withdrawal text remains, the 585-page document provides crucial insight into the planned treatment of intellectual property – including rights of representation, exhaustion and the cost-free cloning of rights. Read more

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