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Tag Archives: CJEU

Can a taste be protected by copyright in Europe?

This is, in essence, the fundamental question that has been submitted to the CJEU in the case C-310/17 (Levola Hengelo v. Smile Foods). The opinion of Advocate General Wathelet (read it here, no English version yet) released on 25 July 2018 is that the taste of food (in this case of cheese) is not protectable

A second market for “used” e-books – CJEU will decide

Ever since the European Court of Justice (CJEU) in its highly regarded UsedSoft ruling declared the resale of “used” software admissible (dated 3 July 2012, C-128/11), the discussion has persistently centered around the question whether the idea of the so-called exhaustion, upon which UsedSoft is essentially based, could or should be extended to other digital

The red sole has not been kicked out!

The long-awaited Louboutin judgment has finally been delivered (here). The judgment is not only interesting on a substantive level, but also surrounded by a variety of procedural peculiarities: The oral hearing was re-opened (which happens very rarely!), and as a consequence, the Advocate General had to issue a second opinion. Lastly, the judgment was issued

UK & EU Focus on non-traditional trade marks and overcoming the hurdles

Since its inception, the harmonised national EU trade mark legislation – and later the EUTM system – has opted for a flexible approach to non-traditional trade marks. In principle “any sign” capable of indicating origin may constitute a trade mark, resulting in several non-traditional marks being registered. These include colours, shapes, sounds, smells, patterns, holograms,

Have Christian Louboutin’s exclusive rights to red soles really been “kicked out” as some reports claim?

The long-awaited Advocate General’s second opinion in Louboutin (C 163/16) was delivered in February. In a nutshell, Christian Louboutin sued Van Haren Schoenen BV for trade mark infringement in the Netherlands of its Benelux trade mark shown below: Following Van Haren’s counterclaim that the above trade mark was invalid, the Dutch national court referred the

CJEU on designs which are solely dictated by technical functions

On 8 March 2018, the CJEU issued a preliminary ruling in a case that had been referred by the Higher Regional Court of Düsseldorf, Germany. The decision concerns Article 8 (1) of Regulation No 6/2002 which excludes the features of appearance of a product from protection which are solely dictated by its technical function. If all features

adidas victorious again in defending its rights to the Three Stripes

The General Court has once again upheld adidas’ oppositions against two copycat applications for two stripes positioned on a shoe. The two decisions issued on 1 March 2018 (in Cases T-629/16 and T-85/16) come as part of the long-standing trade mark dispute between adidas and Shoe Branding*. The cases involved Shoe Branding’s two applications for

Europe: Can new “hate speech” legislation set the mould for the Copyright Directive?

The phenomenon of so-called “Hate Speech” has been in the public eye for a while now, but particularly in German news. Hate speech denotes verbal attacks and accusations based on personal attributes such as race, religion, ethnic origin, sexual orientation, disability, or gender. Victims of such disgraceful conduct can be individuals or groups of individuals.

Advances in Polish IP Law, part 2: Trademarks – graphic representation, renewal, partial transfer & enforcement by licensees

The recently published draft of the Act amending the Industrial Property Law (14 November 2017) introduces fundamental changes in the provisions on trademark protection. Currently, the bill is being agreed upon in the Council of Ministers. The new regulations primarily result from the need to implement Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council

Brexit Bill – Impact on patents

The UK government’s draft EU Withdrawal Bill (the “Brexit Bill“) aims to incorporate EU directives and regulations into UK domestic law in their current form immediately following Brexit (“Retained EU Law“).  This article considers the impact the Brexit Bill will have on some key patent issues. The Brexit Bill and EU Decisions In addition to

UPC and Germany: Status update – Constitutional complaint, ratification timeline and more

Background The constitutional complaint against the UPC ratification that was lodged with the Federal Constitutional Court in Germany earlier this year has received a lot of attention over the past few months as it could have the potential to considerably delay the entry into force of the Agreement on a Unified Patent Court (UPCA). Pursuant

CJEU to rule on press publishers’ neighbouring right

With decision of 8 May 2017, the regional Court of Berlin referred to questions for preliminary ruling to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU). The court is concerned whether the rules on the press publishers’ neighbouring right – as implemented into German copyright law in 2013 – were properly enacted back then.

IP Enforcement Focus : Europe – round-up

IP Enforcement Focus is our series of written, video and audio posts which plug into your current European enforcement issues. These posts cover IP related court cases as well as relevant political and economic developments in this area. Since January, we have published 13 summaries of key IP enforcement developments, including 8 v-logs. This round-up outlines each commentary with a link to the full post,

CJEU: Comparative advertising – Putting prices into perspective

This short IP Enforcement Focus v-log covers a welcome confirmation from the CJEU on some comparative or misleading advertising ground rules. In case C-562/15 between Carrefour and Intermarché, the legality of the former’s claim of lower prices than any competitor was called into question. The central issue here was based around whether hypermarket prices were being compared to those of smaller