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11 November 2013

Post-delegation dispute resolution procedures to be up and running soon

The post-delegation dispute resolution procedures that may be used in the event of a dispute with a registry of a new gTLD will all soon be up and running following the recent publication of various new documents. The procedures have been developed to provide those harmed by a new gTLD registry's conduct with an alternative avenue to complain about that conduct.

07 November 2013

UDRP decision shows that brand owners may prevent use of marks for alleged fan sites

A French union of champagne producers has obtained the transfer under the UDRP of a domain name incorporating its trademark that was used for a purported fan site by the registrant. The decision shows that, whilst the use of a domain name for a non-commercial fan site may constitute a legitimate defence under the UDRP, brand owners may still be able to prevent the use of their trademarks for supposed fan sites.

06 November 2013

Ralph Lauren's application for '.polo' gTLD rejected

Ralph Lauren’s application for the '.polo' gTLD has been the subject of a successful community objection by the US Polo Association pursuant to the New gTLD Dispute Resolution Procedure. Among other things, the panel found that the '.polo' gTLD would operate as a restricted registry to promote Ralph Lauren’s brand, which would impair the polo sports community’s ability to promote the sport of polo.

06 November 2013

'.cl' registry announces changes to registration and dispute resolution policies

NIC Chile, the registry responsible for managing the ‘.cl’ domain name space, has announced the implementation of changes to its registration and dispute resolution policies to bring it into line with global industry practices. These changes will come into effect on December 1 2013.

05 November 2013

Owner of MONOPOLY successfully opposes 'opoly' mark

In Ibitoye v Hasbro Inc, the appointed person has dismissed an appeal against a decision of the hearing officer in which the latter had upheld an apposition by Hasbro Inc, the owner of the MONOPOLY mark, against the registration of the trademark GALATOPOLY. The GALATOPOLY mark was to be used for a proposed high-quality game inspired by, and based on, the Bible - in particular on the New Testament book of Galatians.

05 November 2013

Hotel's trademark held to extend beyond its geographic region

In Dorpan SL v Hotel Melià Inc, addressing the issue of whether a senior trademark user of a mark related to travel was entitled to trademark protection outside of its geographic region, the Court of Appeals for the First Circuit has explained that travel-related marks were entitled to protection beyond their geographic regions.

05 November 2013

Grand Theft Auto maker triumphs under UDRP

A WIPO panel has ordered the transfer of the domain name ‘’ to a well-known video games company under the UDRP. Among other things, the panel found that the addition of ‘beta’, ‘giveaway’ and ‘5’ to the complainant’s GTA mark strengthened the confusion by implying that the beta version of the complainant’s highly anticipated new video game was available at the site associated with the domain name.

04 November 2013

Goodwill and reputation found to exist in name of 1960s band

In Burdon v Steel, the appointed person has allowed an appeal by Eric Burdon, the lead singer of 1960s band The Animals, against a decision of the hearing officer allowing an application by the group's former drummer, John Steel, for the registration of THE ANIMALS in Classes 9 and 41. The fact that Steel was one of the "last men standing" did not enable him to lay claim to the whole of the benefit of the band’s goodwill and reputation.

03 October 2013

Four-stripe designs on footwear held to be deceptively similar to adidas’ three-stripe mark

In adidas AG v Pacific Brands Footwear Pty Ltd, the Federal Court has held that certain four-stripe designs used by Pacific Brands on its footwear were deceptively similar to adidas’ well known three-stripe trademark. The court also held that certain other four-stripe designs were sufficiently dissimilar so as not to infringe adidas’ mark.

02 October 2013

Use of 'OsCar' by insurance company held to infringe well-known OSCAR mark

The Court of Appeal has issued an injunction preventing Belgian bank and insurance company DVV from using the sign 'OsCar' in the course of trade, finding that it infringed the well-known CTM OSCAR of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. DVV had launched a bonus-malus system under the name OsCar, using the slogan “And the OsCar goes to…”.

01 October 2013

Supreme Administrative Court allows registration of biscuit shape as 3D mark

The Supreme Administrative Court has held that the shape of the Carneval biscuit could be registered as a 3D trademark, as it had acquired distinctiveness due to its longstanding and extensive use. The decision also dealt with the assessment of survey evidence concerning distinctiveness acquired after the application date.

30 September 2013

Diesel fails to register marks in Class 25

In Diesel SpA v Montex Holdings Limited, the hearing officer has upheld oppositions against the registration of DIESEL marks by Diesel SpA for goods in Class 25, but dismissed the oppositions with regard to goods in Classes 16, 18 and 24. In upholding the oppositions, the hearing officer noted that a mark registered in a single foreign country cannot be held in reserve in Ireland on the off-chance that the proprietor of that mark might someday expand its business into Ireland.

27 September 2013

National trademark filings holding steady

The Spanish Patent and Trademark Office has released its annual report for 2012. Surprisingly, the number of trademark applications continues to be substantial, despite inroads made by the CTM and Spain’s difficult economic situation. The report also contained statistics on criminal activity involving intellectual and industrial property, showing that counterfeiting and piracy were down 31% from the previous year.

26 September 2013

PYREX dispute: turning up the heat on trademark rights

In a dispute involving the trademark PYREX for glassware, the assistant registrar has considered whether the withdrawal of a threat of opposition against an application to register a trademark amounted to a surrender of one's rights to institute cancellation proceedings in respect of the same mark.

25 September 2013

Berlin Zoo successful in trademark battle over polar bear

In Knut IP Management Limited v OHIM, the General Court was called upon to decide on a trademark conflict in relation to a polar bear named Knut, who rose to stardom in Berlin Zoo where he was kept in captivity between 2006 and 2011. The decision provides an exemplary assessment of the similarity of goods and services in Classes 16, 25, 28 and 41.