Mainly intellectual property (IP) issues Down Under


in which the spell has landed …. Harry Potter’s creator, JK Rowling, and her movie producers have successfully obtained an injunction against the publication of The Harry Potter Lexicon.  The judge also awarded US$6,750. Marty has the text of Warner Bros Entertainment Inc. v RDR Books (SDNY 8 Sept 2008) here. IPKat has a short summary based on media reports here. NY Times report (free subscription required) here. It’s not.. Read More

Security over a business name

A restaurant granted a bank, Westpac, security over its assets.  When the business went sour and the bank came to enforce the security, it found the registration of the business name, Melba’s on the Park, had been transferred to someone else and another company incorporated under the name too.  Apparently, the ability to sell the restaurant business with its name would add significant value. What to do? Somehow, the bank.. Read More

Madrid system and ‘foreign’ trade marks in the USA

So, you’re not a USA-based trade mark owner and you’ve got your “trademark” registered in the US through the Madrid system.  That means you don’t have to worry about all those annoying requirements actually to use the trade mark there, doesn’t it? Well, no. Saunders & Silverstein  lay out all the pitfalls that you are going to have to hurdle here. Lid dip to the Kat with the plummy accent.

Time shifting – remotely

For those who heard my brief summary of Cartoon Network v Cablevision, in which the 2nd Circuit found Cablevision did not infringe copyright in movies and other tv content by adding a “home” taping service for its subscribers, Prof. Raymond Nimmer provides a detailed critique arguing: This may be among the worst appellate court decisions in copyright law history[!] here; more favourable review here.

A different Chrome IP issue

For those of you wondering what Google Chrome is all about, David Pogue does an excellent review and Google, of course, has pretty good explanatory materials including a comic. Something your brand owners may want to start thinking about is the new monoline address/search bar: you type in a word and Chrome starts suggesting a range of alternatives.  See an example and watch the video here. Nothing to worry about,.. Read More

How innovative must an innovation patent be?

In Delnorth v Dura-Post, Gyles J had to decide whether or not innovation patents for (e.g.) A roadside post comprising an elongate body formed of sheet spring steel and having a longitudinal axis, a transverse axis transverse to said longitudinal axis, a front face and a rear face, said front and rear faces transversely extending generally parallel to said transverse axis, wherein said body is elastically bendable through 90 degrees.. Read More

A case on computer software licences and back ups in Australia

A rare and interesting decision on the scope of (mainframe) computer software licences and s 47C (computer program back-ups) and s 47F (security testing) of the Copyright Act: RWWA (which runs the West Australian TAB).  SAG granted it a non-transferable, non-exclusive licence to run the ADABAS database management software on its mainframe computer.  This was the software used for its its betting business.   In addition to installing the software on its mainframe.. Read More

What are you going to do

Twitter is a kind of IM (instant messaging, for those of you even squarer than me) for web browsing.  It used to be mainly for …; well, anyway, people who can’t hang around waiting for the email to come through are increasingly adopting it. Some twitters (or is that tweeters?) are adopting the persona of fictional characters.  The creative ones getting right into character.  Marty asks the questions … Read.. Read More

IceTV transcript is up

and it certainly looks like House of Commons was right to warn database owners to be very afraid. Gummow J opened with a bouncer to Counsel for Nine Network, the respondent, pointing out that the House of Lords in Ladbroke v William Hill overruled Lord Diplock who was then sitting as Diplock LJ in the Court of Appeal.  Followed up with: GUMMOW J: What I am putting to you is.. Read More

Gripe sites and branding

What do you do when someone registers the domain name [yourbrand]sucks.com?  What should you have done before it got registered? Apparently, more than 20,000 domain names take the form [yourbrand]sucks.com.  Sometimes, the person that registers it is just after your money (and lots of it); sometimes, they have a very serious grievance with your company and they want to air all the dirty details out there in cyberspace. When they’re.. Read More