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07 May 2008


The laws and regulations governing trademarks in Germany include the Trademark Act 1995, last amended December 2004, and the Copyright Act 1965, last amended September 2003.

07 May 2008

United States

US trademark law is generally governed by the Lanham Act, which was enacted in 1946 and is codified at 15 USC 1051 et seq. The Lanham Act addresses trademark protection at federal level.

07 May 2008

European Union

The Community trademark (CTM) was established by the Community Trademark Regulation (40/94/EC). The CTM is a supra-national right providing registered trademark protection throughout the 27 member states of the European Union, while sitting alongside national trademark and other IP rights.

30 April 2008

Trademark managementMaintaining brand integrity in the marketplace

Vigilance on the part of trademark owners is vital to ensuring that a trademark’s goodwill is not exploited or damaged. This column explores the ways in which brand owners can stop unlawful actions and protect brand integrity

30 April 2008

Nobody does it like Sara Lee

The sheer size of Sara Lee’s portfolio means that its trademark department tackles almost every aspect of trademark protection and enforcement. Other rights holders can learn much from its approach to copycat products and counterfeiting

30 April 2008

Branding in China: avoiding a false start

Western companies have been knocking at China’s door for three decades now, all trying to entice the country’s massive purchasing power to their products. Two questions continue to nag at these companies as they consider the Chinese market

30 April 2008

Best practice in devising a litigation strategy

Infringement is, unfortunately, often an unavoidable fact of life for brand owners. Putting in place the most appropriate litigation strategies can help to lessen the pain

30 April 2008

Making the most of BVI corporate vehicles

International brand owners looking to invest in new markets and needing effective corporate set-ups to manage their trademark portfolios should consider the British Virgin Islands

30 April 2008

Shaken and stirred: the adventures of a Soviet vodka brand

The fate of the STOLICHNAYA brand since the collapse of the Soviet Union has been eventful, to say the least, with the fight over rights to the mark extending well beyond the borders of the Russian Federation. A close look at the dispute still raging in Australia provides an insight into the complexity of the issues involved

30 April 2008

Brands from the frontlineFamous and well-known marks: the challenges of protection

The owners of ‘well-known’ or ‘famous’ marks can benefit from cross-border protection, but far more needs to be done to harmonize the international principles behind these doctrines

25 April 2008

Supreme Court revokes entrepreneur's licence to use OTTO mark

The Supreme Court has stripped an individual named Wilfro Luminlun of his licence to use the trademark OTTO. Among other things, the court found that Luminlun's use of the mark for goods other than jeans violated the terms and conditions of a licence granted to Luminlun by the owner of the mark.

20 March 2008

Decision in MEKAKO Case has significant implications for brand owners

In Anglo Fabrics (Bolton) Ltd v African Queen Ltd, the High Court has held that African Queen Ltd infringed Anglo Fabrics (Bolton) Ltd's registered trademark MEKAKO and passed off its medicated soap products as those of Anglo Fabrics. Among other things, the decision has significant implications for brand owners acquiring or disposing of their trademarks.

10 March 2008

Yahoo! acquisition: something to cheer about?

Microsoft’s plan to buy Yahoo! raises a number of important branding and trademark considerations in terms of both the minutiae of the deal itself and the implications for the online advertising market

10 March 2008

Trademark managementTrademark warming in Africa

Recent developments mean that trademark owners should make plans both to develop their brands’ presence and to protect their rights in (and from) Africa

29 February 2008

Recordal of licence as registered user agreement is mandatory

The commissioner of patents, designs and trademarks has ordered the cancellation of the mark ZIP on the grounds of non-use, even though the party that filed the petition for cancellation was the former distributor of the trademark owner. The decision seems to establish a rule that recordal of a licence as a registered user agreement is mandatory with respect to the validity of a licensed trademark.