Category Archives: Intellectual Property Law

Guatemalan Protesters Demand Repeal of Plant Variety Rights Law

In demonstrations today in Guatemala City, Guatemala, public officials and thousands of residents of indigenous communities demanded that the national legislature repeal the recently-enacted Plant Variety Rights Law. See Diputados se comprometen a derogar Ley Monsanto, Prensa Libre (2 Sept. … Continue reading

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Increased Fines for Violations of North Carolina Seed Law

In 2013, the North Carolina legislature increased the maximum fine for violations of the state’s seed law from $500 to $10,000 per violation. See N.C. Session Law 2013-345, Senate Bill 455, An act to increase penalties for violation of the seed … Continue reading

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Unintended Consequences of Open Access Publishing Policies

Rick Anderson at The Scholarly Kitchen has a thought-provoking article regarding the pressure on authors to publish their academic articles under the most permissive open access licenses available. See Rick Anderson, CC-BY, Copyright, and Stolen Advocacy, The Scholarly Kitchen (Mar. … Continue reading

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“Twilight” Trademark Infringement Claims Cleared for Trial

The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York ruled that the entertainment company responsible for the “Twilight” film series is entitled to a trial on claims that its trademarks were infringed by a cosmetics company’s use of … Continue reading

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Spanish Trademark Office: “Paella Catalana” too Generic to Register as Mark

On September 10, 2013, Barcelona chef Quim Marqués applied to the Spanish Patent and Trademark Office for registration of the trademark PAELLA CATALANA–the name of a wildly popular dish of rice, chicken, and seafood created by Marqués at the restaurant … Continue reading

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Functionality of Product Design Bars Registration as Trademark

In Adams Manufacturing Corp. v. Rea, No. 12-1430 (W.D. Pa. March 12, 2014), a federal court in Pennsylvania upheld the determination of the U.S. Trademark Trial and Appeal Board (TTAB) that the shape and design of a suction cup with … Continue reading

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Fair Use Bars Copyright Infringement in Politician Photo Case

The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California held that the fair use doctrine barred copyright claims by a politician and lawyer against the operators of a website that reproduced her photo without her permission. Dhillon v. Does 1-10, No. … Continue reading

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SCOTUS Allows False Advertising Claims vs Printer Cartridge Manufacturer

On March 25, 2014, the Supreme Court of the United States unanimously ruled that Static Control Components, Inc., a seller of components for remanufacturing of used laser printer toner cartridges, may pursue false advertising claims against Lexmark International, Inc., a … Continue reading

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Ecuadorian IP Institute Registers Traditional Knowledge of Indigenous Community

Yesterday, at a conference at its offices in Guayaquil, the Ecuadorian Intellectual Property Institute (IEPI) presented its 2013 annual report. IEPI, 2013 Informe de Rendición de Cuentas. As noted in an article published in the newspaper El Comercio, IEPI has been … Continue reading

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Chilean Government Pulls Proposed Revision of Plant Variety Rights Law

Yesterday, after years of controversy, the government of newly re-installed Chilean President Michelle Bachelet withdrew a proposal to revise Chile’s plant variety rights law. The proposed modification was first introduced in January 2009, when Bachelet was serving her first term … Continue reading

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