ILN IP Insider

Journalism and copyright: what is protected by copyright law?

In Greece the main legislative instruments regulating copyright and related rights are:

  • Law 2121/1993 on Copyright, Related Rights and Cultural Matters (the Copyright Law); and
  • Law 4481/2017 on the Collective Management of IP Rights and Related Rights and Collecting Organisations.
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IP CONSIDERATIONS FOR BUSINESSES OPERATING ONLINE – AN AUSTRALIAN PERSPECTIVE

Recent changes in consumer behaviour due to the COVID-19 pandemic mean that few businesses can afford to ignore the internet, and the opportunities for efficiencies and scale that it offers.  Operating a business online presents tremendous opportunities for growth by opening up new geographical markets, however it also creates new challenges for businesses in ensuring that their key intellectual property assets, which are made available online, are adequately protected.

So how can businesses manage their intellectual property, and ensure they are not infringing on the intellectual property rights of others, when trading online?

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TRADEMARK USE: NO NEED FOR A “BRICKS AND MORTAR” PRESENCE IN CANADA

“Use it or lose it” is a staple expression known to Canadian trademark lawyers. Once a business successfully registers a trademark in Canada, it must “use” its registered mark in Canada or it may lose the protections provided by the Trademarks Act (the “Act“). With the advent of e-commerce, many non-Canadian businesses can now advertise their services to Canadians online. Demonstrating use of the mark in association with such services online by the non-Canadian business may prove challenging.

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Patent Disputes in Life Sciences

Having vast expertise in providing legal protection to large Russian and international pharmaceuticals and healthcare companies, Lidings has put together a Legal Digest highlighting the most notable patents disputes in Life Sciences:

 

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Can You Register a Copyright on a Short Work of Words and Artistic Designs?

Suppose that you have expressed your work into a tangible form such as a short expression of words and artistic designs.  Although your copyright exists upon the moment of creation, does the work contain a sufficient amount of authorship on which to base a claim for a copyright registration?  Should you register the copyright on the work with the U.S. Copyright Office?  The answer is YES!

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Data Privacy and E-Commerce: Considerations for the Food and Beverage Industry

The global food and beverage e-commerce market is expected to grow to $22.4 billion in 2020, possibly reaching $36.4 billion in 2023. That’s up from $14.9 billion in 2019.  Food and beverage e-commerce revenue in the United States alone is projected to exceed $15.2 billion this year and $19 billion by 2022.

It’s no surprise that much of this recent uptick is due, in large part, to the global COVID-19 pandemic.  With most people now working from home and limiting in-person interactions, consumers have flocked online to purchase food, beverages and other essential goods.  And it’s not only online grocery and delivery services like Instacart and Amazon Fresh that are reaping the benefits of this increased consumer demand. Many food and beverage brands themselves have also added or shifted to direct-to-consumer e-commerce offerings. Where supply chain, shipping, and payment processing, among other things, previously made direct sales logistically unattainable and unprofitable, e-commerce became one of the most powerful tools for some in the food and beverage industry to stay relevant and accessible to their customers during the pandemic.

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Supreme Court Unanimously Rules That Willfulness Is Not Required to Recover Profits

The U.S. Supreme Court resolved a circuit split on April 23, 2020, by unanimously holding in Romag Fasteners, Inc. v. Fossil Group, Inc., et al. that a brand owner is not required to prove that a trademark infringer acted willfully in order for the owner to be awarded the infringer’s profits.

Background

Romag Fasteners, Inc. (Romag) sells magnetic snap fasteners for leather goods under its registered trademark ROMAG, and Fossil, Inc. (Fossil) designs, markets and distributes fashion accessories. Romag and Fossil had entered into a license agreement that permitted Fossil to use Romag’s fasteners in Fossil’s handbags and other products. Romag later discovered that certain Fossil products contained counterfeit snaps bearing the ROMAG mark, so Romag sued Fossil in Connecticut district court for trademark infringement. During the trial, it was established that one of Fossil’s manufacturers in China consistently used counterfeit ROMAG snaps.

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GENERIC.COM — REGISTRABLE IN CANADA?

The U.S. Supreme Court recently confirmed that a “generic.com” term may be eligible for federal trademark registration in the U.S., in certain circumstances. We will review the relevant decisions, discuss the Canadian legal framework with respect to registration of such mark and consider the implications of seeking registration of a “generic.com” or a “generic.ca” mark in Canada.

The Relevant Decisions

In United States Patent and Trademark Office v. Booking.com B.V, the travel reservation company Booking.com B.V. (“BBV“) sought to register four marks, each containing the term “Booking.com”, with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO“). BBV offers its travel reservation services under the brand “Booking.com” and operates a website with the same domain name.

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BUSINESSES BEWARE: DEPRECIATION IN GOODWILL CLAIMS NOT BOUND BY INDUSTRY LINES

The Federal Court of Canada (the “FCTD“) recently released Toys “R” Us (Canada) Ltd v Herbs “R” Us Wellness Society, in which it considered whether a cannabis company, Herbs “R” Us Wellness Society (“Herbs R Us“), had breached Sections 20, 7(b) and 22 of Canada’s Trademarks Act (the “Act“) with respect to claims of trademark infringement, passing off and depreciation of goodwill. This is an interesting case in its review and application of Section 22 of the Act. It provides further protection for trademark owners in Canada.

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Queen Anne’s Revenge, Indeed!: Copyright Conundrums, Sovereign States, and IP Piracy

“One man’s legally sanctioned privateer is another man’s pirate.”          

[James Wadsworth, Global Piracy: A Documentary History of Seaborne Banditry (2019), at p. 8]

We live in a time of contradictions and confusion, and today we aim to explore how some such tensions have manifested themselves in the area of intellectual property law.

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