Week’s news headlines – Sep. 4th 2015

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Franchising arrangements and intellectual property considerations

The overall contribution of franchising to the UK economy is £13.7 billion which, although less than 1 per cent of GDP, reflects a 20 per cent increase over the past five years and highlights a gradual change in the ways businesses are conducting their operations.

A ‘franchise’, in its most common form, entails the granting of a licence by one person or business, (the franchisor) to another (the franchisee). This enables the franchisee to operate its business under the brand of the franchisor.

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Haggen accuses Albertsons of unfair competition, sues for $1 billion over grocery deal

The small grocery-store chain Haggen on Tuesday sued Albertsons for more than $1 billion in damages, alleging the supermarket giant engaged in systematic efforts to eliminate it as a viable competitor in five states.

The lawsuit, filed in federal court in Delaware, accuses Albertsons of anti-competitive practices. Haggen, based in Bellingham, Washington, says those efforts forced it to lay off hundreds and close nearly a fifth of the stores it had acquired from Albertsons and Safeway last December.

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More NCAA athletes seek own trademarks

Like their counterparts in the pros, more college football stars are starting to snatch up trademark rights to their names, nicknames and fan slogans.

The NCAA generally forbids its players from cashing in on their athletic success, but by gaining legal ownership of phrases tied to their personal brands, players can pave the way for lucrative licensing deals in the future and can prevent others from exploiting their names.

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Trademarks – Not What They Used To Be: Courts expected to seriously revisit First Amendment issues

Marsha Gentner, a senior counsel in Dykema’s Intellectual Property Group, specializes in trademark portfolio management worldwide, encompassing everything from clearing and registering marks to enforcing rights and defending companies against trademark claims. Here, she highlights some recent trademark cases that involve novel or emerging issues, and she outlines what corporations should be aware of in managing their most successful brands.

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FDA wants suffixes to distinguish biosimilars from biologics

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has proposed using four-letter suffixes to name biosimilar drugs.

Published on Friday, August 28, its guidance attempts to clarify the naming rules for such drugs, which are similar versions of original biologic products.

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Is it Appropriate Prosecute Patents for Direct Competitors on Inventions on Similar Technology without Disclosure and Waivers?

A patent law malpractice case is pending before the Massachusetts Supreme Court that has major implications for patent prosecution practice.  Many patent patent attorneys and law firms develop technology-specific specialties as a marketing strategy.  The professional responsibility problem arises when the strategy is successful enough to attract multiple clients with substantial technological crossover.  Of course, this likelihood is intensified in larger law firms where more lawyers means more clients and more (potentially overlapping) invention disclosures.

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Online lodging sites unfair competition, innkeepers tell Upper Makefield supervisors

Michael Amery, owner of the Inn at Bowman’s Hill in Upper Makefield, gave a presentation to the supervisors outlining how the online sites in most cases don’t pay the 3 percent hotel tax, and aren’t subject to the same rules and regulations that licensed bed-and-breakfasts, inns and other lodging facilities have to follow.

“People in some cases are renting out entire farms and there are issues of zoning, parking, noise and residential invasion,” said Amery. “There are also issues of liability because in most cases these hosts don’t carry liability insurance covering guests in case of fire and other things. If you don’t think these issues can happen in Upper Makefield, you might be surprised over the next six months.”

Read more at: http://www.buckscountycourier



Chung accuses rival of unfair competition

FIFA presidential candidate Chung Mong-joon urged the global soccer governing body’s electoral and ethics committees to investigate officials and regional soccer associations for violation of election rules in order to sway votes in favor of his European rival.

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Cetem e INT pedem patentes de invenções no setor mineral

As invenções são intituladas Processo de formação de tubetes e/ou vasos poliméricos agrícolas utilizando como carga resíduos minerais e Polipropileno com resíduos de rochas ornamentais para produção de armação de óculos.

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TLC entre India y la UE interrumpido por genéricos

El acuerdo que se negocia entre India y la Unión Europea se ve estancado por la prohibición de fármacos genéricos indios por parte de Europa.

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Japan firms seek to register sounds as trademarks

From the shouts of superheroes to the rustling sound of ochazuke rice topping mix, a range of sounds and colors can now be registered as trademarks following the implementation of a revised Trademark Law in April.

After going through a screening process, some will be registered as trademarks in autumn.

Sounds play a key role in advertisements for corporate branding strategies. The first sounds to be registered as trademarks are expected to set a standard for similar applications in the future, according to sources, so the kind of sounds to be legally considered as trademarks will be closely watched.

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