Week’s news headlines – nov. 14th 2014

Foreign words as trade marks in Europe and UK

Marks which are descriptive or contrary to public policy or morality cannot be registered. Objections raised to applications on this basis are referred to as objections on “absolute grounds”. Objections on absolute grounds can raise particular problems when filing applications in multilingual regions such as the European Community Trade Mark (CTM) system.

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Patent could advance stem cell therapeutics

Rutgers University chemistry associate professor Ki-Bum Lee developed patent-pending technology that may overcome critical barriers to harnessing the full therapeutic potential of stem cells

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API copyrights a “threat” to tech sector, scientists tell Supreme Court

Dozens of computer scientists are urging the Supreme Court to overturn a May federal appeals court decision that said application programming interfaces (APIs) are subject to copyright protections.

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Internet Patents buys Nebraska intellectual property company for $16.5M in cash

Internet Patents Corp. announced late Tuesday it will buy a Prism Technologies LLC, a Nebraska intellectual property licensing company, for $16.5 million in cash.

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Irish division of international patent court to be established

The Unified Patent Court will allow individuals/businesses to file actions under patent law in a single court case to decide on the validity of a patent throughout up to 25 EU Member States thereby eliminating the need for country-by-country patent litigation and thereby substantially reducing legal costs and time.

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The trend of protecting trademark licensees in bankruptcy continues: for the first time a court extends Section 365(n) protections to trademark licensees on equitable grounds

If you doubted it before, you can stop now. The trend of courts finding ways to protect trademark licensees from the harsh effects of losing their trademark license rights in bankruptcy is in full swing.

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Top four high profile cases in Intellectual Property law

Thomas Jefferson is often quoted as remarking; “he who receives an idea from me, receives instruction himself without lessening mine; as he who lights his taper at mine, receives light without darkening me.” His sentiments, while romantic, do not necessarily express a view that many companies, authors, and artists would agree with when it comes to protecting their intellectual property today.

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Why Patents Are Dying

I have always associated innovation with patents.

It’s the classic vision of the lone, wild-haired inventor in a grimy white lab coat putting himself and his family (assuming they’re still hanging around – he spends all of his time in the basement tinkering and cursing) through abject poverty until he finally hits on something useful and a huge conglomerate buys his invention and he moves to a mansion.

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Microsoft Files New Battletoads Trademark

Microsoft has filed a new trademark application for Battletoads, suggesting–but absolutely not confirming–that the Xbox company may be planning to revive the series in some fashion.

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Zulu sues to protect trademark on logo, Mardi Gras coconuts

Coconuts handed out by members of the Zulu Social Aid and Pleasure Club are one of the most prized trinkets of Mardi Gras season, and only Zulus are allowed to hand them out, a trademark lawsuit filed in federal court states.

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Noh Foods sued over ‘Huli-Huli’ trademark infringement

A mainland company that makes Huli-Huli sauce has sued a local company that makes Hula-Huli sauce.

Huli-huli may be a familiar term in Hawaii, but when it comes down to it, mainland-based Pacific Poultry Company owns the rights to it. So other companies would need permission to use it.

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Ninth Circuit Knocks Down Unfair Competition Case Against Yelp!

For those few of you who don’t know already, Yelp! (“Yelp”) is a wildly popular website where people can share their reviews, opinions, experiences, and ratings of businesses across the country. This service is invaluable when investigating new restaurants, dog walkers, dry cleaners, etc. However, it is important to take the reviews with a grain of salt because, no matter how great a store is, there will always be a few disgruntled customers, and, reportedly, it is becoming more and more common for competitors to post fake negative reviews and for employees to post fake positive reviews.

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