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23 January 2017

New IP Code enters into force: 2017 will be the year of IP rights

Following the merger of various IP-related decree-laws into a single code, the new Industrial Property Code (No 6769) entered into force as of January 10 2017. It is expected that the new code will influence and change Turkish IP law practice by bringing complete or partial solutions to some of the fundamental problems of the country’s trademark law. This update provides a summary of the novelties introduced by the IP Code.

19 January 2017

European arm of top Asia-Pacific trademark player King & Wood Mallesons enters administration

The London office of King & Wood Mallesons (KWM) – a general practice firm with top-rated trademark credentials, previously touted as “the first global law firm headquartered in Asia” – entered administration this week.

19 January 2017

TITANIC QUARTER revoked due to "clear absence of evidence of use"

In Property Renaissance Limited v Titanic Trademark Limited, Property Renaissance Limited has obtained the revocation of the word mark TITANIC QUARTER, registered in the name of Titanic Trademark Limited in Classes 36, 41 and 42, on the basis that the mark had not been put to genuine use in Ireland.

18 January 2017

Unregistered mark with reputation can enjoy protection

In The National Aluminium & Profile Co (foreign company) v Extal Ltd, the Jerusalem District Court has affirmed the deputy trademark registrar’s refusal to register a mark consisting of a lengthwise slit along aluminium profiles following an opposition by the owner of a long-used similar mark.

17 January 2017

The battle of Porsche versus [email protected]

The District Court of The Hague has rendered a judgment in a case brought by Porsche against an unnamed individual. Both parties had met previously in court in 2012, when it was ruled that the defendant had filed a trademark application for the word PORSCHE in bad faith.

16 January 2017

Fitbit sues reseller for selling ‘counterfeits’; defendant claims ‘harassment’

Exercise tracking technology company Fitbit has filed a lawsuit against a New Jersey business which sells discontinued and refurbished products to consumers. In the suit, Fitbit claims the defendant sold ‘counterfeit’ and ‘non-genuine’ versions of Fitbit products – a claim staunchly denied, with a representative telling World Trademark Review that Fitbit is engaging in “litigious scare tactics” in response to a lawsuit it had filed a month previously.

12 January 2017

Church's appeal to a higher authority prevails over adidas

The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has reversed the TTAB’s decision that the sale and transfer of goods in an Illinois church bookstore were de minimis and insufficient to constitute interstate commerce. The court considered whether an intrastate sale to an out-of-state resident satisfied the ‘use in commerce’ requirement under the Lanham Act, and the decision demonstrates a more generous standard of analysis.

11 January 2017

Trademark trends and challenges: have your say on the state of the industry

Corporate and law firm professionals are being invited to participate in the ninth annual Global Trademark Benchmarking Survey, which measures the pulse of the industry, tracks industry trends and identifies how trademark practice is evolving to counter new threats and exploit new opportunities. Participation in the survey is free of charge and designed to give counsel – both in-house and in private practice – the opportunity to have their say on the state of the industry.

11 January 2017

PRET A MANGER held to be highly distinctive

The General Court has upheld the decision to reject an application for the mark PRET A DINER following opposition by Pret A Manger. The court found that the appeal lacked substantive arguments and the decision demonstrates that a high degree of distinctiveness and reputation will satisfy assessment purposes where there is a low degree of similarity between marks.

11 January 2017

Nestlé loses appeal over Kit Kat shape marks

The Court of Appeal has upheld the decision that Nestlé’s two-fingered and four-fingered KIT KAT shape marks lack inherent distinctiveness as they do not represent a significant departure from the norms of chocolate confectionery. The decision emphasises the fact that, unless there is evidence to prove that consumers are accustomed to recognising the shape of a product as a badge of trade origin, even evidence of substantial use is unlikely to assist.

10 March 2017

How close is too close? Statements of support from connected parties in genuine use examined

In MI Industries Inc v EUIPO, the General Court has clarified several principles relating to proof of genuine use of a trademark, in particular the notions of 'close links' and 'third parties'. The court rather unusually went further than the facts of the case and made a number of statements of general applicability.

08 March 2017

India’s new trademark registry rules raise filing fees more than expected

Further to our report earlier this week, India’s Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion has ratified new trademark registry rules and published final fees – some of which are higher than most industry observers had anticipated.

07 March 2017

New call made for plain packaging on high-calorie foods in a bid to fight “small devils in our brains”

A renowned neuroscience professor, unveiled this week as one of the co-winners of The Lundbeck Foundation’s Brain Prize, has stated that efforts need to be made to reduce the attractiveness of unhealthy foods. As the trademark community awaits the predicted fall of the next ‘plain packaging domino’, the focus appears to be shifting to foods and drinks that are high in sugar, fat and salt.

07 March 2017

Both parties in cross-opposition proceedings found to have some rights in LUCKY TEA

In cross-opposition proceedings concerning the mark LUCKY TEA, the hearing officer has found that each party had some rights: Mariages Frères owned the earlier rights for household goods in Class 21 and tea and tea-based products in Class 30, while TWG Tea Company had the earlier rights for other foodstuffs in Class 30, including spices, sugar and bread. The case is a reminder of how important it is to file trademark applications to secure the earliest possible filing date.

02 March 2017

Trademark Office registers colour orange for bakery products

The Trademark Office has registered the colour orange for cakes, biscuits and pastries in the name of Productos Ramo SA, finding that the colour was sufficiently distinctive to allow consumers to associate it with a specific commercial origin. Although Andean legislation establishes that only a “colour delimited by a shape” can be registered as a trademark, the decision shows that the office has become more and more flexible with regard to the shape provided with the application.