General GWiR 5 March 2009 from IP Think Tank

Here is IP Think Tank’s weekly selection of top intellectual property news breaking in the blogosphere and internet.

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Highlights this week included:

Patent Reform Act of 2009 introduced in Senate and House of Representatives, 3 March (Anticipate This!) (Peter Zura’s 271 Patent Blog) (Patently-O) (Patent Prospector) (Patent Docs) (Patent Baristas) (Intellectual Property Watch) (Law360) (BLOG@IP::JUR) (Chicago Intellectual Property Law Blog) (Patently-O) (Inventive Step) (Washington State Patent Law Blog) (Techdirt) (Hal Wegner)

Reactions to Patent Reform Bill 2009 (IP Watchdog) (Patent Baristas) (IP Watchdog) (IP Watchdog) (Patently-O)



Global – General

World IP Day, 26 April, approaching (IPKat)

Global – Trade Marks / Brands

Suntech slowly vanquishes an eco-mark outlaw (Green Patent Blog)

Global – Patents

Thomas Friedman presentation: Change or die (BLOG@IP::JUR)

Confessions of a reluctant convert to electronic patent file management systems and why I am now a true believer (IP Asset Maximizer Blog)

Global – Copyright

WTO US-China piracy ruling (Lehman Lee & Xu)


The industrial design and the patent in Brazil (RelatIP)


Federal Court: Need for proper evidence of trade mark use: Curb v Smart & Biggar (Canadian Trademark Blog)

Tag Heuer loses trade mark in Canada (The IP Factor)


Why STAs are different from EPAs/FTAs and influencing IPR norms is preferable to being influenced (IP Dragon)

Portrait rights in China: when they say cheese, you say see you in court (IP Dragon)

Truce reached in ‘38th parallel moral rights dispute’ (Lehman Lee & Xu)

Chinese distiller, Kweichow Moutai Company, uncorks anti-counterfeiting case (Lehman Lee & Xu)

Some ‘easy’ China trade mark wins for Bridgestone (China Hearsay)

More tales of IPR protection lobbying (China Hearsay)


Court of First Instance says PTR and RPT marks ‘dissimilar’: Professional Tennis Registry, Inc v Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market, Registro Profesional de Tenis, SL (Class 46)

Coming deliberations of the Working Party on IP (Patents) of the EU council (BLOG@IP::JUR)

CTM fee cut confirmed (Managing Intellectual Property)

EPO releases free patent valuation tool – IPscore (Peter Zura’s 271 Patent Blog)

Latest GI application: TRADITIONAL GRIMSBY SMOKED FISH (Class 46)

New IP hook-up in Europe challenges traditional law and attorney firm approach (IAM)


DPMA and the registrability of ‘Hardcore’ trade mark (Class 46)


Jurisdiction in cases of design infringement: Urooj Ahmed v Maya Appliances (Spicy IP)

Indian Patent Office trying to dispose of pending cases as expeditiously as possible (Competitive Info)

Delhi High Court takes softer approach toward possible infringers in copyright case relating to educational texts: University of Cambridge v BD Bhandari (Spicy IP

Retail industry joins fight against counterfeit imports (International Law Office)

GI label yet to benefit Indian farmers (Intellectual Property Watch)

Latin America

How to protect patents in Latin America – Managing Intellectual Property’s Latin America roundtable (Managing Intellectual Property)

New Zealand

Copyright Amendment Act passed, but wider IP reform stalls (International Law Office)


Societe Nationale Chemins de Fer Francais (SNCF) files request for invalidation of HPM’s registration of word-figurative trade mark HPM ORIENTEXPRESS (Class 46)

PPO invalidates JAX based on Colgate-Palmolive earlier AJAX mark (Class 46)

South Africa

Unilever enforces 1924 OMO mark in RSA: Unilever Plc & Anor v Salma Traders (Afro-IP)

Renaming of High Courts in South Africa (Afro-IP)


Spain signs up for Singapore Treaty (Class 46)

MUGA: Spanish Supreme Court rules on relationship between trade mark rights and unfair competition law (Class 46)

United Arab Emirates

Gulf Cooperation Council Trademarks Act resolves uncertainty over use by licensee (International Law Office)

United Kingdom

Copyright term extension for sound recordings – Open letter calling for evidence leading to policy change (Excess Copyright)

AT&T, CVON – more UK patentability appeals (IPKat)


United States

US General

US 2009 Trade Agenda released (Intellectual Property Watch)

Intellectual property will be America’s main source of competitive advantage in the 21st century (Financial Aspects of Intellectual Property)

Call for papers: 9th Annual IP Scholars Conference (Rebecca Tushnet’s 43(B)log)

Head of transactions at Ocean Tomo resigns (Managing Intellectual Property) (IAM)

Will economy spur the rise of ‘asset light’ companies? (Peter Zura’s 271 Patent Blog)

US General – Decisions

California state appeals court upholds Bank of America win in trade secret spat with K C Multimedia (Law360)

US General – Lawsuits and strategic steps

Canon USA – Canon sues former employee for revealing trade secrets to rival Ikon Office Solutions in violation of confidentiality agreement (Law360)

US Patent Reform

Patent Reform Act of 2009 introduced in Senate and House of Representatives, 3 March (Anticipate This!) (Peter Zura’s 271 Patent Blog) (Patently-O) (Patent Prospector) (Patent Docs) (Patent Baristas) (Intellectual Property Watch) (Law360) (BLOG@IP::JUR) (Chicago Intellectual Property Law Blog) (Patently-O) (Inventive Step) (Washington State Patent Law Blog) (Techdirt) (Hal Wegner)

Reactions to Patent Reform Bill 2009 (IP Watchdog) (Patent Baristas) (IP Watchdog) (IP Watchdog) (Patently-O)

Worries about our patent system (The Invent Blog)

US Patents

Licensing Executives Society urges Obama Administration to ensure antitrust laws don’t hinder patentees’ ability to license patents (Law360)

PTO hiring freeze and budget problems (IP Watchdog)

Patent stimulus to solve Great Depression II (IP Watchdog)

State immunity from patent infringement: bargaining for grant money (Patently-O)

Patentable subject matter redux: Bilski 2009 (Patently-O)

Number of inventors in each utility patent application published June 2007 to February 2009 (Patently-O)

Foreign patent protection (Inventive Step)

E D Texas as the best venue (Patently-O)

USPTO publishes 2,000,000th application (Patent Librarian’s Notebook)

USPTO issues patent 7,500,000 (Patent Librarian’s Notebook)

Accelerated examination case study (Patently-O)

There’s more to Intellectual Ventures than meets the eye (IAM)

Need money? Patent it – Citigroup’s patent on ‘synthetic currency transaction network’ (IP ADR Blog)

USPTO seeks National Medal of Technology and Innovation nominations (Daily Dose of IP)

US Patents – Decisions

ITC: Initial determination in LG’s favour in Whirlpool fridge patent case (ITC 337 Law Blog) (Law360)

US Patents – Lawsuits and strategic steps

Amsted Industries – ITC denies motion to quash non-party subpoena served on Westinghouse Air Brake Technologies Corporation by Amsted in cast steel railway wheels matter (ITC 337 Law Blog)

Automated Merchandising – Defendant appeals preliminary injunction against sale of new vending machines: Automated Merchandising v Crane (PATracer)

Balsam Coffee Solutions – BCS sues Folgers Coffee, J M Smucker Co, Kraft, Melitta for infringement of patent on method for processing coffee (Law360)

Biosig Instruments – Nautilus cries fraud in heart rate monitor patent spat with BioSig (Law360)

CIBA Vision Corp – CIBA plans to appeal $47.1 million judgment against it in patent dispute with Rembrandt Vision Technologies over contact lenses (Law360)

General Motors Corp – Coupled Products accuses GM and two of its suppliers of wilfully infringing patent covering hydraulic assembly used in power steering systems (Law360)

Jaco Environmental – Jaco seeks summary judgment for breach of contract claims in case against American International Speciality Lines Insurance to try to recoup defence costs in rival’s patent infringement suit (Law360)

LG Display Co – AU Optronics, LG drop patent from LCD war (Law360)

MBO Labs – MBO Labs appeals invalidity summary judgment based on violation of recapture rule 35 USC § 251: MBO Labs v Becton (PATracer)

Samsung Electronics – Samsung seeks to disqualify McKenna Long & Aldridge from representing Apeldyn in patent suit filed against Samsung over LED technology on grounds one of the lawyers on the case once represented Samsung (Law360)

Tesco – Weatherford International’s counterclaims survive in Tesco patent suit over drilling technology (Law360)

Tomar Electronics – Facing bankruptcy, Tomar seeks to stay enforcement of injunction and $6.75 million damage award in patent suit filed by Global Traffic Technologies over traffic pre-emption systems (Law360)

Wal-Mart – Vision-1 seeks to stop Wal-Mart from using instant customer feedback system it alleges infringes its patent (Law360)

US Copyright

John Conyers and open access; illuminates anti-open access bill money trail (Lessig) (EFF)

US Copyright – Decisions

Supreme Court agrees to hear arguments about whether to reinstate $18 million settlement in class action copyright lawsuit by freelance writers against group of database publishers (Law360)

US Trademarks

Montana Senator again includes language in fiscal year 2009 Omnibus appropriation bill blocking LAST BEST PLACE registrations (TTABlog)

US Trade Marks – Decisions

TTAB precedential no 4: TTAB rules that sound emitted by goods in normal course of operation cannot be inherently distinctive: In re Vertex Group LLC (TTABlog)

TTAB: Divided Board Panel affirms mere descriptiveness refusal of STEELWORKERS finds 2(f) evidence insufficient: In re United Steel, Paper and Forestry, Rubber, Manufacturing, Energy, Allied Industrial and Service Workers International Union AFL-CIO.CLC (not precedential) (TTABlog)

District Court N D North Carolina: Coining a geographic identifier: OBX-Stock, Inc v Bicast, Inc (Property, intangible)

US Trade Marks – Lawsuits and strategic steps

Design Within Reach – Heller lodges trade mark infringement suit against DNR over similar shaped chair (The Trademark Blog)

Exxon Mobil Corp – X On Wireless settles with Exxon agreeing not to resume use of its now abandoned X ON mark (Seattle Trademark Lawyer)

Penguin Group – Author of EAT RIGHT 4 YOUR TYPE sues author of EAT RIGHT 4 YOUR METABOLIC TYPE: Penguin Group (USA) and Peter J D’Adamo v Knowledge House Publishers and Cass Ingram (The Trademark Blog)

Walt Disney Co – Walt Disney Co files counterclaim in ‘Little Miss’ t-shirt dispute arguing publisher of ‘Little Miss’ children’s book series should not be allowed to monopolise the generic words (Law360)


Official Notice No. 186/TB-SHTT relating to the new Schedule of fees for Industrial Property Procedures (Trung Thuc)

Proposed amendments to the Code of Intellectual Property (Trung Thuc)


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