Week´s news headlines – mar. 24th 2016

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Intellectual property intersects with show business

You marvel at the magic trick. You dance to the killer guitar riff. You laugh at the stand-up comic’s punchline or watch in awe as the chorus line moves as one.

That’s what you’re watching. What you’re also watching but don’t see is the complex legal infrastructure that underlies all of those things and helps to ensure that your favorite entertainers will not only enjoy the benefits of their creativity right now but also will be encouraged to come up even more stuff for you to enjoy later.

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U.S. fights to keep iconic Yosemite name trademarks, including The Ahwahnee

The agency has asked a federal trademark board to cancel trademarks obtained by the company that previously ran the park’s hotels, restaurants and outdoor activities, the Sacramento Bee reported Friday. Those trademarks include the name, “The Ahwahnee,” which was used on a luxurious stone-and-timber hotel with stunning views of the park’s fabled granite peaks, and “Curry Village,” a woodsy family-friendly lodging complex.

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Federal Circuit Court Of Appeals Says That Excluding Disparaging Trademarks From Registration Is Unconstitutional

Simon Shiao Tam, a founding member of the band The Slants, sought registration of THE SLANTS as a trademark in 2011 for use in connection with his band’s live music performances. Tam chose The Slants as his band’s name in an effort “to ‘reclaim’ and ‘take ownership’ of Asian stereotypes.” The Trademark Office rejected the application on the grounds that the mark “‘deride[s] and mock[s] a physical feature’ of people of Asian descent.” This determination that THE SLANTS was disparaging was affirmed on appeal by the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board and then again on appeal by the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals; however, THE SLANTS case was reheard by the Federal Circuit en banc, which held that the disparaging trademark exclusion was unconstitutional.

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Merck patents on Hepatitis C treatment found valid in Gilead dispute

Merck  told a federal jury on Tuesday it was seeking more than $2 billion in damages from rival Gilead Sciences  after the jury upheld the validity of two Merck patents in a high-profile dispute over Gilead’s blockbuster cure for hepatitis C.

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Copyright infringement is making a lot of headlines these days: companies are getting sued and artists aren’t getting paid. Streaming services from Spotify to SoundCloud want to make money by giving their audience access to music online, meanwhile artists and producers are fighting for a fair share of the profits those companies are making. As the Internet continues to transform the music industry from the inside out, it’s more important than ever that you have a basic understanding of how intellectual property functions.

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Paul McCartney takes battle for Beatles songs to copyright office

Well into his eighth decade, Paul McCartney has a lot to be thankful for. Though he recently was denied entry to Tyga’s post-Grammys party, he is a living legend: one of two surviving Beatles and the co-writer of much of the band’s material. Yet, one prize remains beyond McCartney’s grasp. He lost his publishing rights to the Beatles’ catalogue decades ago and, despite years of wrangling that included a tiff with Michael Jackson, has been unable to get them back.

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The first major copyright trial of the viral-video era

Venable San Francisco partner Jessica Grant recently represented Jukin Media in what The Hollywood Reporter called, “the first major copyright trial of the viral-video era.” Their client Jukin alleged that Equals Three, a YouTube Channel, which has 11 million subscribers had added commentary to several of its videos in violation of Jukin’s copyrighted material.

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Why you must monitor your intellectual property online

Security is never a static process. It always involves a constant cycle of preventative measures, incident detection and mitigation of damage. Whether you’re referring to a CCTV system, a lock on a door, or digital asset protection, these principles are always at play.

They also extend to the protection of a business’s intellectual property.
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ITMA 2016: UKIPO reveals trademarks boom

Trademark applications at the UK Intellectual Property Office (IPO) have increased by more than 360% since 1987, an official has revealed.

In 1987 there were 26,000 applications compared to 120,000 in the 2015/16 financial year.

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Is there a principle of “dressing up” a trademark?

In Home Hardware Stores Limited v Benjamin Moore & Co., Limited, 2015 FC 1344, an appeal of a decision of the Trademarks Opposition Board released at the end of 2015, Home Hardware argued the principle of “dressing up” a competitor’s trademark as a separate consideration in assessing confusion between the marks. Although an intriguing concept, and one that has initial appeal, it does not appear to exist under Canadian law.

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Unifying trademark laws in the GCC – are you prepared?

The GCC member states appear to be moving closer to harmonisation of their trademark laws. This briefing considers the next steps in the process and the implications of the new law for businesses with brand assets in the GCC.

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Amgen’s Patents on Cholesterol Drug Declared Valid by Jury

Makers of rival drug, Regeneron and Sanofi, say they disagree with verdict

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EU revokes one of the patents on Biogen blockbuster Tecfidera

Biogen ($BIIB) has faced a number of challenges to its top-selling drug, multiple sclerosis med Tecfidera, in the few years since it has been on the market. Now it faces a new one in Europe in the always treacherous and uncertain realm of pharma patent law.

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Patents over patients

Government privileges the private over the public, preferring trade to health

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Military vet battles government over intellectual property

Defence industry advocates worry veterans will lose out in wake of new ruling

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Spotify inks “no copyright claim” royalty deal with music publishers

“Only a temporary solution,” says copyright lobby group.

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