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Showing posts from December, 2017

British and American IP Attaché Networks

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Jane Lambert

On 19 Sept 2017 I chaired two seminars on IP rights in China for businesses, lawyers and patent and trade mark attorneys in Yorkshire. One took place in Leeds in the studios of Northern Ballet and Phoenix Dance Theatre and the other in the Barnsley Business and Innovation Centre. Both were attended by leaders in business, education and the arts including, in particular, Phoenix's artistic director, Sharon Watson, who was about to visit China with a view to bringing her company to that country.

The main speaker at those talks was Tom Duke who is our IP attaché to China and Hong Kong.  Tom is one of four officials who work with the Department for International Trade (DIT) and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) to provide support for UK businesses seeking advice on local IP matters.  The other three are Christabel Koh in Singapore who covers South East Asia, Angelica Garcia in Brazil and Shilpi Mehta Nanda in India. You can obtain information about all those attac…

What constitutes Joint Copyright? Martin v Kogan

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Jane Lambert

HH Judge Hacon Martin  and Another v Kogan[2017] EWHC 2927 (IPEC) (22 Nov 2017)

Florence Foster Jenkins was described by Stephen Pile as "the world's worst opera singer." In 2016 a film was made about her life starring Meryl Street as the singer and Hugh Grant her husband. The film was very popular.  Streep was nominated for an Oscar for her performance.  The movie grossed receipts of US$44.3 million by 16 Oct 2016 according to Wikipedia.

The screenplay was credited to Nicholas Martin who is a film and TV script writer.  While he was writing the script Mr Martin was living with Julia Kogan who is an opera singer.  There was no dispute hat they had discussed the project during that time.   Ms Kogan claimed to have contributed to the script to the extent that she was entitled to be regarded as a joint author.  
Mr Martin and his company sued Ms Kogan for a declaration that he was the sole author of the work while she counterclaimed for a declaration that she is…

Caspian Pizza Appeal - Caspian Pizza Ltd and Others v Shah and Another

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Jane Lambert

Court of Appeal (Lady Justice Gloster and Lord Justices Patten and Richards) Caspian Pizza Ltd and Others v Shah and Another [2017] EWCA Civ 1874 (23 Nov 2017)

In Caspian Pizza Ltd and Others v Shah and Another [2015] EWHC 3567 (IPEC) (9 Dec 2015) Judge Hacon dismissed a claim for trade mark infringement and passing off. The trade marks relied upon were the device mark that appears above and the word mark CASPIAN. The judge declared the word mark invalid because the defendants had run a restaurant called "CASPIAN" in another part of the country which constituted an "earlier right" within the meaning of s.5 (4) of the Trade Marks Act 1994. However, he did not declare the device mark invalid on the ground that the defendants had no goodwill in the running chef logo.   I blogged about the case in Caspian Pizza Ltd and Others v Shah and Anotheron 24 Jan 2016.

The claimants appealed to the Court of Appeal against the invalidation of the word mark on the grou…