IPwars.com

Mainly intellectual property (IP) issues Down Under

Shape and colour trade marks

Julian Lee, in the Age yesterday, reported on the concerns of “marketers” about how hard Australian regulators are making it to register a shape as a trade mark, in the wake of: last month’s ruling by Sundberg J against Guylian’s sea-horse shaped chocolate; and the commencement of Nestle’s appeal against Aldi’s successful opposition to registration of the shape of a Kit Kat bar as a trade mark (BDW discussed the.. Read More

IPRIA, parallel imports

IPRIA has organised a seminar in Melbourne on 15 September and Sydney on 16 September to discuss whether freeing parallel imports will make books cheaper. Speakers include both Prof. Fels, who started it all, and Dr Rhonda Smith. Details from here. Has anyone established how far the prices of CDs and computer software fell once the markets for those products became open?

Uni of WA v Gray

The Full Court (Lindgren, Finn and Bennett JJ) have dismissed the University’s appeal against the trial judge’s (the then French J) findings that the University did not own the targeted microsphere technology inventions Professor Gray made (partly) while a professor at the Uni. The full 380 paragraphs – University of Western Australia v Gray [2009] FCAFC 116 Lid dip @pofip

Patenting racemates and enantiomers

Lundbeck had a patent for citalopram for the treatment of depression, which it marketed in Australia under the name Cipramil Citalopram is a chiral molecule: it can exist in two isomeric forms; a (+)-enantiomer and a (-)-enantiomer. The two forms have the same chemical structure, but they are mirror images. At its priority date, the relevant skilled addressees would have understood that the compound was a racemate or racemic mix.. Read More

ACIP: Post grant patent enforcement

ACIP’s interim report on Post-Grant Patent Enforcement Strategies is now available on the internet (pdf). The main recommendation is that: Proposal 1: That IP Australia establish an IP dispute resolution centre along the lines of WIPO’s Arbitration and Mediation Center, which in the first instance focuses on patent disputes. Funding for the centre should be on a “user pays” basis. A number of “implementation” recommendations hang off that. For example:.. Read More

Sea-horse shaped chocolate not a trade mark

Having secured an International Registration, Guylain tried to register a chocolate in this shape as a trade mark in Australia through the Madrid Protocol (TM App 936483). Sundberg J, on appeal from the Registrar’s refusal, has also rejected it as incapable of distinguishing Guylain’s goods (pralines and chocolate, to be precise) under s 41. Not inherently adapted — enough First, Sundberg J was satisfied that the sea-horse shaped chocolate was.. Read More

IP Australia issues more reform discussion papers

IP Australia has released two more discussion papers of reform proposals: Flexible search and examination Flexible Search and Examination (patents) Streamlining the patent process The Streamlining paper has some ambitious goals: Removing unnecessary differences in law between Australia and overseas jurisdictions. This would help reduce the cost to applicants of re-drafting claims to meet the various requirements of each jurisdiction. It would also reduce the potential for errors to occur as a result.. Read More

Down the proverbial Technicon

Technicon has lost its appeal from trial findings that it infringed both Caroma’s registered design for a toilet pan and the copyright in drawings in technical specifications. This was a case under the old (1906) Act rules. The trial judge found there were sufficient differences to avoid liability for obvious imitation. However, there was a strong finding of fraudulent imitation. The trial judge found that Technicon at least had reason.. Read More

Spam Act

Logan J has granted an interlocutory injunction under the Spam Act 2003, pending trial for civil penalties. Apart from the fact that cases under the Act are not exactly thick on the ground, the debate in the case really turned on: whether ACMA would be required to provide an undertaking as to damages – in the end, it wasn’t; whether the injunction should take the narrower form of undertakings proferred.. Read More

Kookaburra gets the Vegemite sandwich

Jacobson J has upheld Larrikin’s claim to be the owner of copyright in Kookaburra sits in the Old Gum Tree,  which means, at least, that Larrikin has standing to sue Men at Work et al. for infringing copyright in that music. Larrikin alleges that Men at Work’s Down Under (you know, unfurl the Boxing Kangaroo, declare a national holiday and have a beer with Bondy) infringes the copyright in “Kookaburra”… Read More

%d bloggers like this: