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News about trademarks

Trademarks, whether they are strong, beautiful or special, play an important role in our daily lives. All brands have their own story, their own context within which they develop. Investing in the value of a trademark is an important part of a business’s strategy since the value of a trademark or trademarks to a great extent determines the profitability of the organisation and thus its value. With practical situations as a focus, this section sets out all relevant and interesting developments in the field of trademark law.

Princess Kate refused

24-03-2015

We will not be wearing ‘Princess Kate’ or ‘Royal Kate’ any time soon. The US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) refused registration of these trademarks for fashion articles for suggesting a false connection with Kate Middleton. Ever since Kate tied the knot with Prince William, she became not only a Duchess, but also a royal celebrity in need of brand protection.

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Monitor that domain

23-03-2015

As the number of top-level domains continues to expand, it’s becoming more challenging for brand owners to monitor for infringing use of their brands and trademarks online. Finally, there is an automated tool that can help.

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IP in the news: high stakes in the music industry

16-03-2015

From the Blurred Lines copyright dispute to the Kraftwerk trademark, it seems that hardly a week goes by without another music IP case hitting the headlines.

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An Innocent claim to the Dude!

05-03-2015

A series of decisions at OHIM and the UK High Court has ruled on the legal and equitable ownership of copyright in the Innocent Dude Logo. Novagraaf’s Vanessa Harrow outlines the dispute so far.

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Using trademarks to create strong brands in the retail sector

05-03-2015

A strong brand helps companies to differentiate themselves in their sector, and nowhere is this more important than in highly competitive industries, such as e-commerce and retail. It may be no surprise that the latest Brand Finance Retail 50 results have identified Amazon as the clear brand leader in the retail sector by quite some margin. But, there is plenty that retailers of all sizes and..

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Novagraaf teams up with WISE on IP and sports

03-03-2015

As part of a collaboration, Novagraaf will run an IP-focused workshop and seminar at Work in Sports Exhibition (WISE), which will take place in Lausanne, the Olympic capital, on 6-7 May.

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Red Bull shows its balls in opposition against Old Ox Brewery

23-02-2015

When Old Ox Brewery applied for a trademark registration to cover non-alcoholic drinks, Red Bull took the bull by the horns and filed an opposition. Although the logos look nothing alike, the Austrian energy drink manufacturer claims that there is a likelihood that consumers will confuse the brands and argues that “an ox is a castrated bull”. Will Old Ox be forced to change its name?

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Will the court prefer it kinky or flirty?

23-02-2015

Since 2011, Minnesota-based Crosby Lake Spirits Company has retailed a range of fruit-infused vodkas under the trademark Kinky. It is suing rival Wisconsin-based Minhas Micro Distillery for trademark infringement after it launched its own brand of fruit-flavored vodka under the name Uptown Girl Flirty Liquor.

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Protecting colour marks in Europe: are you still seeing in B&W?

19-02-2015

It's now been more than six months since new guidelines for the protection of device marks and word/device marks in black and white (B&W) and greyscale came into effect in the EU. With the practice now seemingly embedded across European trademark registries, now may be a good time to review your trademark portfolio to ensure compliance with the new rules, says Helene Whelbourn.

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Lego is ranked the world’s most powerful brand

17-02-2015

Analysis by Brand Finance of the world’s top brands shows Lego as the most powerful, Twitter as the fastest growing and Apple as the most valuable brands.

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