With the booming of online commerce, entering your personal information and sending it to the cloud has become inevitable. Along grew the concern of both citizens and businesses. The lack of control over given data worried many and the fragmentation of laws and complicated national systems of obtaining protection did not help. Therefore, it is no wonder that 90% of the surveyed EU citizens opted for an improved and unified EU data protection legislation.

On 4 April 2016 the European Parliament adopted the new Data Protection Regulation and Directive. The Directive entered into force on 5 May 2016, with a three-year transposition deadline, and the Regulation will enter into force on 24 May 2016, with the application date set for 25 May 2018.

With joined efforts, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) conducted a study on counterfeiting and the impact it had on economy from 2011 to 2013. Their results were published on 18 April 2016 under the name“Trade in Counterfeit and Pirated Goods: Mapping the Economic Impact”. Although presuming the results would not be satisfactory, they have exceeded all expectations, with 2.5% of world trade including counterfeits and up to 5% of imports in the EU. This might not seem significant at first glance, but 2.5% of the world trade amounts to 461 billion USD, which is equal to the GDP of Austria. 5% of EU trade is 116 billion USD, almost the GDP of Hungary. Seeing these numbers in black and white should start the alarm in policymakers´ heads and show how much we are in need of a change in the legislation.

1891 was the year basketball was created, American Express issued first travelers´ checks and Edison patented motion picture camera. However, the most significant date for intellectual property is April 14, 1891 as it marks the date the Madrid Agreement was adopted.

After the European General Court’s (EGC) ruling on September 2015, the battle of the reptiles continues in front of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU). As Lacoste protects their famous crocodile logo, Kajman is trying to prove the difference of their KAJMAN logo.

Background of the case

n its judgement of 18 March 2016, the General Court ruled that the wordmark “BIMBO” cannot be registered as a European Trademark. The Italian-speaking consumers of the Union would merely perceive the mark as indicating that the relevant products are intended for children  (Judgement T-33/15).

“BIMBO”

Background of the case

On 15 April 2016, the European Trade Mark and Design Network published a Common Communication on Convergence on graphic representations of designs (CP6).

 

 

The Communication on the Graphical representations of designs is a result of the cooperation between the European Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO), National IP Offices and User Associations in a so-called Convergence Programme. The aim is to reach a common ground in areas where IP offices have different practices.

The CP6 is the first one published in the area of designs. The aim is to give guidance for the examination procedures on e.g.:

A trademark can be any sign capable of distinguishing the products of one company from those of another. If you own a trademark, you have exclusive rights to use that trademark on the products you have protected and are offering on the market. This means that you can prevent any third party from using the same or a similar mark for the same products. Consumers usually base their purchasing decision on the good reputation of or their previous experience with a brand. The trademark attached to the products is therefore of great value to a company as it helps the consumers to pick out products from a specific commercial origin.

Through a license agreement the owner of a trademark, the licensor, can allow third parties, the licensees, to use his trademark under certain conditions in return for payment.

In its preliminary ruling of 3 March 2016, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruled that actions on trademark infringements in online advertising cannot be brought against a third party who is not in direct or indirect control of the act constituting the trademark use (Judgement C-179/15).

On 21 October 2015, the German Federal Court of Justice (BGH) ruled that the registered 3D trademark of Mars‘ „Bounty“ chocolate bar is protected against trademark use by competitors. The Court held that if the public perceived the shape of a product as a source indicator, then it was very likely to do the same with a highly similar shape of a competitor’s product, as long as the goods were identical.

Background of the case

Greek Police has had a productive month. With a massive destruction of seized counterfeits, they are showing the counterfeiters they are a force to be reckoned with. On March 17, 2016 Hellenic Police conducted a huge raid and seizure of counterfeit goods. The Police reported appropriation of around 19 000 items, 11.517 of which were blouses, 2.918 pairs of sports shoes, 1.845 purses and bags, 1.444 pieces of underwear, and the rest was divided between pants, shirts and caps.