Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Round up!

Well I haven't written anything new for a while and in this time an incredible number of interesting cases / issues have arisen. This post aims to give an overview to, or more likely just link you to other people who have more interesting things to say!

First on the list (a very out-law based list) is the news from WIPO that the number of domain name disputes in the past year have increased by 8%, according to WIPO's director: "Cybersquatting remains a serious issue for trademark holders," shocking news? I think not. It seems likely that with the introduction of new TLD's will only create more problems. I have written about the introduction of these before and without going over the issues again what I will say is that it is simply a money making scheme which will create more expense for businesses in a time when they are trying to cut back.

The next point (and my second favourite of this round up) also comes from out-law and shows quite how far social networking site Twitter has come. A juror in the States (all fools anyway?) made tweets (see IP Freely knows the lingo) regarding the case. The verdict they reached is now being appealed on the basis that the juror was biased, examples of his tweets are as follows:

"Nobody buy Stoam. Its bad mojo and they'll probably cease to Exist, now that their wallet is 12m lighter,"
"I just gave away TWELVE MILLION DOLLARS of somebody else's money"

and best of all is the following, bear in mind that at this stage he had already been found out for his Twittering, so what did he do?........:

"Well, I'm off to see a judge. Hope they don't lock me under the jail, and forget about me for four days,"


Finally from out-law is a tremendous story about yet another idiot. This time someone infringed their own patent! Basically the guy involved went on BBC2 hit show Dragons Den, unlike most contestants (if they're called that) he managed to convince the dragons to invest £150,000 into his business: the Rapstrap. Unfortunately for all involved this muppet had already got a patent for the product 10 years previous when he worked for a different firm, the IPO have confirmed that the Rapstrap "falls within the scope of claims 1 and 5 of the patent," what action is taken remains to be seen.

The ever reliable IPKat features two cases that caught IP Freely's eye: the Google France v. Louis Vuitton Malletier case (C- 236/08) and the Beta Layout case (although for the latter we are awaiting a full translation), I suggest you head over to the feline page to peruse their views.

Also on IP Freely's recent radar is the case of Times Newspapers Limited (Nos 1 and 2) v United Kingdom (Applications Nos 3002/03 and 23676/03), tactfully reported in the Times Law Reports (here) this not surprisingly featured the Times Newspaper.

This week IP Freely has also been fascinated with the ongoing West Ham / Tevez / Sheffield United saga (and you can possibly add to that list Neil Warnock / the players / Ledds United) which seems to become more farcical by the day. Now as I see it surely the damage suffered by Leeds United (and Neil Warnock etc) is too remote? I would though like the views of those more experienced than me on this......anyone?

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