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02 June 2015

Research reveals that around two-thirds of internet users are unaware of cybersquatting

Research published by ICANN has pointed to a growing awareness of new gTLDs, although such strings lag significantly behind legacy TLDs in terms of familiarity. Arguably more of a surprise is the finding that just over one in three internet users are aware of cybersquatting.

15 December 2014

A year at the USPTO – the trademark perspective

The USPTO has published its Performance and Accountability Report (PAR) for financial year (FY) 2014, with trademark operations getting a clear thumbs up.

12 December 2014

2014’s top 25 trademark stories and issues in mass media misreporting

As 2014 draws to a close and the World Trademark Review Daily email service prepares to take a short break, it’s a natural time to look back at the WTR blogs which received the most reads over the past 12 months.

07 November 2014

Taste trademarks set to remain on the shelf

A judge’s recent declaration that a New York pizzeria’s trademark infringement case for the flavour of one of its dishes was “half-baked” is the latest setback for non-traditional trademarks, and another reminder that taste trademarks remain a sour prospect with little chance of taking off in the US, the EU or any global jurisdiction.

21 October 2014

Google steps up anti-piracy efforts

While focused more on copyright infringement - with particular emphasis on the entertainment industry - than on trademark rights violations, the latest changes to Google’s anti-piracy efforts are worth reporting. Not least because they break a few previously held assumptions on what the company can and can’t do.

01 September 2014

Welcome to the new-look World Trademark Review

With our short summer break over, we return with a new-look website and magazine.

30 September 2014

Trade dress must create visual impression on consumers to warrant protection

In Fair Wind Sailing Inc v Dempster, the US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit has affirmed the dismissal of the plaintiff’s trade dress and unjust enrichment claims, finding, among other things, that the claimed trade dress was "a hodgepodge of unconnected pieces of its business, which together do not comprise any sort of composite visual effect". However, the court vacated the district court’s award of attorneys’ fees.

24 September 2014

Brand owners extol the virtues of a 'softly, softly' approach to enforcement

When infringement occurs, the knee-jerk reaction is for the legal team to swing into action. While the right approach in many instances, brand owners speaking at the MARQUES Annual Conference earlier today argued that sometimes it is better to let infringement slide.

19 September 2014

The international implications of the Philip Morris branding battle in Uruguay

Long-running litigation between Uruguay, which has some of the toughest anti-smoking laws in the world, and cigarette giant Philip Morris could have direct consequences for plain packaging legislation globally. Could it also pave the way for legal action in Europe?

16 September 2014

3D printing specialist warns “every brand on the high street should be scared of 3D printing”

The founder of a new 3D printing cafe business, which opened its first branch in London a fortnight ago, has told World Trademark Review that the open source nature of the 3D printing community could make it very difficult for brand owners to control the potential harm the new technology could cause unless fundamental changes are made to business models today.

11 September 2014

Are trademark registrations the new way for angry consumers to make a point?

Brands are well-used to disgruntled customers taking to social media to air their grievances, but consumers wielding trademark law is a less common tactic. However, one UK individual has bucked that trend and has registered a trademark in the name of the bank that is the source of his ire, with the corresponding domain name being used to air his grievances.

08 September 2014

Staff v stakeholders as ICANN’s accountability comes under scrutiny

This weekend ICANN launched a new public comment period on enhancing its accountability and governance. However, its approach to the issue has come under fire, with questions raised over the lack of community input into the current process.

03 September 2014

‘P’ is for policing, but are dictionaries high enough on your agenda?

The fear of genericism is palpable for many brand owners, especially in a new digital age where language is constantly evolving and brands become more entwined in the social conversation. WTR looks at one strategy to combat genericism that is often overlooked: the policing of dictionaries.

08 May 2014

Top 10 trademark stories for April

While there remain significant obstacles to overcome before registering non-traditional trademarks, given recent legal and technological developments one practitioner suggests that we could soon see non-traditional marks become mainstream marketing tools on both sides of the Atlantic. His arguments formed the basis of our most-read blog in April.

06 May 2014

Why a saucy UK ‘copycat’ dispute is one to watch

Icelandic Seachill has secured a UK High Court interim injunction against German retailer Aldi after it alleged that the store’s ‘The Fishmonger Saucy Salmon Fillet’ products infringed its THE SAUCY FISH COMPANY trademarks. The case will be one for brand owners to follow, not least because it is rare for brand owners to resort to legal action against retailers in disputes centred on alleged copycat products.