Week’s news headlines – jan. 30th 2015

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AstraZeneca, Bristol-Myers Squibb: Intellectual Property


AstraZeneca Plc sued Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Ltd. for seeking U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval to sell a generic version of the breast cancer drug Faslodex.


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When should a startup protect its intellectual property?


Running a startup, particularly when you’re bootstrapping, involves making regular judgement calls on when to spend precious cash, and when to save it. Everyone knows getting legal issues sorted can be expensive, but if you’re a startup your IP is likely to be your most valuable asset. Working out how, and when, to protect it can be difficult.


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United States: Supreme Court: Claim Construction Is Subject To Hybrid Review


In a 7–2 decision penned by Justice Breyer, the Supreme Court of the United States overturned the de novo standard as the sole standard of review issues arising in claim construction.  Teva Pharmaceuticals USA v. Sandoz, Inc., U.S., Case No. 13-854 (Supr. Ct., Jan. 20, 2015) (Breyer, Justice) (Thomas, Justice, dissenting, joined by Alito, Justice).  In doing so, the Supreme Court imposed a clear error standard of appellate review of a district court’s factual findings regarding extrinsic evidence relied on in rendering its claim construction.


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Can Taylor Swift Really Trademark “This Sick Beat”? Yes, and Here’s Why


Taylor Swift just tried to trademark “This Sick Beat.” Here’s why she can, and why it makes a whole lot of financial sense.


The internet almost exploded Thursday over news that pop star (and freshly minted New Yorker) Taylor Swift has trademarked the phrases “This Sick Beat,” “Nice to Meet You. Where You Been?,” and “Party Like It’s 1989,” among others.


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Protection for Prior Copyright in Trademark Disputes


As prescribed in the Chinese Trademark Law, application for registration of a trademark shall not create any prejudice to another person’s prior right, which includes prior copyright. Prior copyright is considered as an important aspect in trademark disputes with various advantages to claim against the disputed trademark, such as automatic protection without registration, cross-jurisdiction protection and cross-Class protection. Regarding protection for prior copyright in trademark disputes, the recognition of a sign as copyrighted work relies on the determination of its originality as prescribed in the Chinese Copyright Law; the identification of infringement upon prior copyright by the disputed trademark generally adopts the principle of substantial similarity and accessibility.


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Two cases of patent revoked by Singapore government since 2001: Rajah


Senior Minister of State for Law Indranee Rajah said that only two applications have been made by the government to revoke patents since 2001, and that both were made to the High Court because they involved counterclaim proceedings.


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Xiaomi May Have A Major Patent Problem


China played an huge part in Apple’s record $18 billion in profit this last quarter. The region accounted for 21% of Apple’s revenue, up from 16% last year. After looking for a while like it was under assault from local, cheaper players in China, Apple has turned the tables.


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Technical Investigators Have Rules To Follow In China’s Intellectual Property Courts


With the Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou Intellectual Property Courts being put into operation late last year, the rules for technical investigators had been missing until 21 January, when the Supreme People’s Court released the Provisional Regulations of the Supreme People’s Court on Several Issues concerning the Participation of Technical Investigators in Intellectual Property Court Proceedings. This is China’s first of its kind making rules for technical investigators.


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Taylor Swift’s ‘this sick beat’ may be the world’s first trademarked lyric


While there are precedents in the world of celebrity and sport, Swift is the first musician to make a pre-emptive strike against opportunistic third parties


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Hormel Lawsuit Over Bacon Secrets: Intellectual Property


Unitherm Food Systems Inc., a maker of machines used to produce food products, was told it can’t claim a trade secret was infringed when an invention was disclosed in a patent application.


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Will Modi give up India’s intellectual property stand just to please Obama?


Amidst the feel-good roadshow of Barrack Obama and Narendra Modi and the promise of $ 4 billion American investment, something critical to the survival of India and the rest of the developing world went under the radar – continuing pressure by America to dilute India’s intellectual property regime that saves the lives of millions of people in India and elsewhere.


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Battling the pirates – intellectual property in the digital environment


Luxembourg is no island within the EU, however, when it comes to Intellectual Property Rights, it can certainly seem that way.


For example, content or works which are not accessible in the Grand Duchy because of IP rights can be accessed down the road in Trier.


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The Weird Science of Naming New Products


The announcement came in November with two names attached: one famous, one not, or at least not yet. The famous name was Paul McCartney. Anyone who wanted to try a virtual-reality experience starring the former Beatle — replicating the sensation of standing center stage with him as he sang “Live and Let Die” to 70,000 screaming fans — had only to download a special video file, put the file into an app for their Android phone and slip the phone into a cardboard headset designed by Google.


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Leading-Edge Law: Is there First Amendment protection for offensive trademarks?


The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office decided last year the trademark registrations owned by the Washington Redskins football team that contain the word “Redskins” should be revoked because, it determined, that name was disparaging to American Indians at the time the registrations were issued.


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It looks like the defending Super Bowl champion Seattle Seahawks’ IP unit is at least as aggressive as their defense.
As The Seattle Times’ Mike Baker reports, the NFL’s Seahawks have been trying to register an eyebrow-raising number of trademarks recently.


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Patents: Help or Hindrance to Innovation?


One way to kick-start the spread of green technology is for companies to make their patents available to other innovators. Toyota announced earlier this month that it was releasing 5,680 patents on its Mirai fuel cell vehicle between now and 2020, including 1,970 patents that deal with the actual fuel cell itself.


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Apple, Nestle, James Bond, Xanterra: Intellectual Property


Apple Inc. (AAPL), operator of the iTunes digital-media distribution system, received a patent on an invention that would give users the means to share a legitimate copy of purchased content.


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United States: Nonprofits: Break Some Trademark Rules!


Nonprofits should take note of the increasing practice of for-profit brand owners “verbing up” their own marks and in some cases deliberately disrupting their own logos. Strong brands can be flexible, fluid, and living – for for-profits and nonprofits alike.


Under the traditional rules of proper trademark use (also known as the ACID test), brands must be used:


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The “Go Hawks” — Can The Seahawks Trademark It?
This is what happens when a trademark application touches a legion of sports fans.


Late Friday, social media sites, such as Twitter, blew up after an article on the website Black Heart Gold Pants chronicled how the Seattle Seahawks of the NFL want to trademark the phrase “Go Hawks” for themselves.
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Pfizer earnings slip on loss of drug patent exclusivity


Pfizer reported today that revenues and profits fell again in the fourth quarter of 2014 as the drug maker continued to suffer from the loss of exclusive rights to various treatments.


Revenues dropped 3.2% from the year-earlier quarter to $13.1 billion, and net income was down 52.1% to $1.2 billion.


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Rubbery patents: Ansell and Durex in condom legal battle Down Under


Two of the world’s largest condom makers will fight out a patent legal battle in Australian courts this year over the rights to a “natural feeling” non-latex condom.


Australian rubber company Ansell has filed a claim in the Australian Federal Court against RB, the British parent company of condom manufacturer Durex.


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Lifenet, Hershey, Galapagos, Puma: Intellectual Property


Lifenet Health, a provider of organ donation and tissue banking services, was told by a federal court in Virginia that many of its requests to keep trade-secret information from being revealed in the transcript of a patent suit were too broadly written.


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There are now two U.S. trademark applications for ‘Je Suis Charlie,’ because of course there are


The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office is processing two applications to trademark the phrase “Je Suis Charlie,” a phrase that was embraced internationally to show solidarity after the Paris massacre at Charlie Hebdo’s offices in early January.


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To patent or not to patent? The market reality for software patents


Last week we published part 1 of my interview with Michael Gulliford, a patent litigator turned patent strategies to high-tech, start-up companies. At a time when most saw the patent market collapsing Gulliford left his partner’s position at Kirkland and Ellis behind, setting out to form Soryn IP Group, which is a patent management company that focuses on portfolio creation, patent brokerage, litigation finance and patent consulting.


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