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BMA | Portugal | 27 Sep 2021

IP Court refuses DOUGHNUTS AND COMPANY trademark due to risk of confusion and lack of distinctiveness

An application for the Portuguese trademark DOUGHNUTS AND COMPANY was opposed on the grounds of its similarity with two prior Portuguese trademarks. The opposition was successful and the Patent and Trademark Office refused the application on the grounds of likelihood of confusion. The decision was confirmed by the IP Court, but on slightly different grounds.
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Danubia Patent and Law Office LLC | Hungary | 20 Sep 2021

Suspension of action for preliminary question

In a recent case, a party requested the cancellation of the mark WU2 on the grounds of its similarity to a prior WU2 word mark and a prior WU2 device mark, which were both known by the owner of the later mark. The question of bad faith was raised but not answered by the courts in this procedure, as the proceeding was directed to whether a legal dispute on ownership constituted a basis for the......
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Wanhuida Intellectual Property | China | 13 Sep 2021

Courts are evolving to tackle bad faith trademark filings in China

In an era in which the significance of intellectual property has been reiterated and elevated to the national strategy level, the Chinese judiciary has been innovatively tackling bad faith trademark filings and reshaping the jurisprudence in this regard. This article discusses various recent cases which show that the courts are becoming increasingly creative in leveraging monetary means to......
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Pinsent Masons | United Kingdom | 13 Sep 2021

Back to square one? Court of Appeal clarifies trademark bad faith

In late July 2021 the Court of Appeal handed down its highly anticipated judgment in Sky v Skykick. The question at the heart of this litigation was whether an EU or national trademark covering a broad range of goods and services can be invalidated (wholly or partially) because the application was made in bad faith, in that the trademark owner had no intention of using the mark in relation to......
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Danubia Patent and Law Office LLC | Hungary | 6 Sep 2021

Problems in respect of acquiescence to prior use

Section 17(1) of the Trademark Act 1977 provides that if a trademark owner tolerates the use of its mark for five years, this constitutes acquiescence. A recent Supreme Court decision established that the conflicting signs do not have to be identical in order for the acquiescence provision to apply.
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Grau & Angulo | Spain | 6 Sep 2021

Valencia Court of Appeal sentences defendant for manufacturing and offering counterfeit handbags

In a recent case concerning counterfeit handbags, the Second Section of the Valencia Court of Appeal held that it was clear from the evidence that there was a commercial purpose to the defendant's actions. The Court sentenced the defendant to three years' imprisonment, a fine and to pay compensation for moral damages.
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GRAF ISOLA Rechtsanwälte GmbH | European Union | 6 Sep 2021

General Court rules on registrability of sound mark submitted as audio file for first time

The General Court recently declared that the sound of a drinks can that is opened, followed by a short silence and a fizzing sound, cannot be registered as an EU trademark (EUTM) because of lack of distinctiveness. This first decision of the General Court on sound marks submitted in an audio format gives helpful guidelines for assessing the requirements regarding distinctiveness that sound......
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Dardani Studio Legale | Italy | 1 Sep 2021

Ship names as distinctive signs: legal protections available

A ship's name is first and foremost an element of identification, but it can be much more – it has great business value. If properly supported and valorised, it creates an association with the other vessels of the owner's fleet, meaning that it can be readily identified as being owned or operated by a certain shipowner in the shipping market. Essentially, it can enhance the value of the......
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Pearl Cohen Zedek Latzer Baratz | Israel | 30 Aug 2021

Recent Israeli judgment further bridges gap between international commerce and territorial trademarks law

A recent decision has made another step towards bridging the gap between the Trademark Ordinance 1972 and the constant evolution of commerce and online marketing. In an appeal filed against a decision of the patents and trademarks commissioner, the Tel Aviv District Court ruled that offering hotel room reservations via international platforms may establish use of the trademark in Israel in......
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NAM & NAM | South Korea | 30 Aug 2021

Are free downloadable apps considered to be "goods" under trademark law?

South Korean trademark law provides that if a registered trademark is not used properly in South Korea for a three-year period following its registration, any third party may request its cancellation. In a recent case, a third party requested a trial to revoke the registration of a trademark that had been used on an app. This raised the question of what is an app, if not a kind of goods?
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