A taste of Vienna in Malta

Starting a business where you can add your personal touch can be a very creative and rewarding experience. However, apart from being creative, one needs to be careful not to infringe others' intellectual property rights when choosing a trade name or a trade mark to identify oneself in the market.

For "A taste of Vienna", a Maltese bakery, obtaining legal advice before selecting its trade mark made its business experience even sweeter. We tell you everything in this new case study. 

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European IPR Helpdesk Bulletin Issue (19)

We are pleased to inform you that a new issue of the European IPR Helpdesk Bulletin has been released and is now available online.

This Bulletin issue is largely dedicated to industrial designs - industrial design protection, where and how to search registered designs, new design innovation funding opportunities under Horizon 2020.

Read also our interview with a young Luxembourgish designer and see her vision on Intellectual Property and design protection.  

Trade fairs - our Bulletin features an article giving practical recommendations on how to minimise the risk of infringement when exhibiting new, innovative products and services.

Article of Professor Thomas Gergen explains the advantages and risks in mediation procedures, as possible alternative to solve intellectual property disputes.

As always, the Bulletin reports information about past IPR events together with some fresh news on the Helpline service. In addition, it contains the usual patent quiz and a new design crossword.

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European IPR Helpdesk Bulletin Issue (31)

This Bulletin issue is dedicated to IP and agribusiness, focusing on topics under current debate.

Jean-Luc Gal introduces this issue with the Notice issued by the European Commission on the Biotech Directive and the subsequent developments. The European Seed Association (ESA) explains the interface between patents and plant variety rights (PVR) which led to the creation of the PINTO database.

The CPVO provides an overview on the administrative arrangement for a bilateral cooperation between the EPO and the CPVO, while EPO speaks about patentable inventions relating to plants and animals. Juan Antonio Vives-Vallés, Assistant Lecturer at the University of the Balearic Islands, focuses on the balance between IP systems and the future of crop innovation in Europe in the light of  the new breeding techniques.

In this issue 4iPCouncil has interviewed the CEO of Vitirover, an SME that has used IP to protect its sustainable and efficient invention in the field of agribusiness. Philipp von Kapff and the CPVO have contributed a joint article on the interface between trade marks and variety denominations, and Massimo Vittori, Managing Director of oriGIn, writes about geographical indications and sustainability.

In addition, Marco Musumeci, from the United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute (UNICRI), focuses on counterfeiting and food frauds, while Philippe de Jong and Elena Bertolotto, from the Altius law firm, explain to us the first compulsory licence case before the CPVO, posing the question on how to strike the balance between PVR and the public interest.

Finally, the International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants (UPOV)  presents to us their new electronic application system, UPOV PRISMA, and the International Seed Federation provides us with their position paper on illegal seed practices.

As per usual, the Bulletin reports information about the European IPR Helpdesk’s past and future events together with the latest updates from our Helpline service, as well as a brand-new agribusiness quiz and our usual patent quiz.

EU customs seized over 31 million fake goods in 2017

A recent report announced by the European Commission shows that EU customs authorities confiscated over 31 million counterfeit products at the EU's external border with a street value of over €580 million.

Although the total figures have declined since 2016, products for daily use (i.e. body care articles, medicines, toys, electrical household goods) accounted for 43% of the total number of detained articles. According to the report, foodstuffs are at the top of the list (24%), followed by toys (11%), cigarettes (9%), other goods (9%) and clothing (7%).

China remained the main country of origin for fake goods entering the EU. According to the type of goods, the highest amount of fake clothing originated in Turkey, while most counterfeit mobile phones and accessories, ink cartridges and toners, CDs/DVDs and labels, tags and stickers entered the EU from Hong Kong and China. India was the top country of origin for fake medicines. 

Check the full the report and the related statistics here.

 

EUIPO report: The Baseline of Trade Secrets Litigation in the EU

On 17 August EUIPO released a report examining the current level of trade secrets litigation, as well as the profiles of the parties involved and the courts dealing with trade secrets matters.

The study itself covers all 28 EU Member States and contains a mapping of the current national legal systems for the protection of trade secrets, competent courts and procedures in place, including remedies against the unlawful acquisition, use or disclosure of trade secrets.

Find further information and the link to the full text of the study, here.

Fortuna Federn/Phoenix: How bitter experience changed a company’s IP approach

Sometimes, bitter experience may result in positive consequences and brings success.

Check our latest case study to learn how facing increasing number of infringements paved the way for a company to restructure its business plans by considering IP, and why developing a sound IP management strategy is of utmost importance especially when doing business based on innovative products.

OECD and EUIPO report: Why do countries export fakes?

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) join forces once again to shed some light on an intellectual property matter with a great impact in the European Union economy: the sale of counterfeited goods. 

Under the title "Why do countries export fakes?", this new report analyses the drivers that will make an economy more likely to become active in the trade of fake goods, with the ultimate purpose of enlightening policy makers so that they develop efficient policy responses to tackle the issue. 

Read more about it here

European IPR Helpdesk Bulletin Issue (30)

This Bulletin issue is dedicated to IP infringement and enforcement focusing on common IP infringements and the enforcement actions that are available to stop them.

WIPO introduces the topic of IP enforcement in the international context by building respect for IP. EUIPO speaks about the third edition of the Enforcement Database Forum and the upcoming IP Enforcement Portal, while Barbara Weizsäcker, Secretary General at EEIA and EMECA, develops the topic of IP protection at trade fairs and exhibitions through an infringement case which occurred at a German international exhibition.

In this issue we have interviewed a financial news website that explains to us how it was accused of filing its EUTM in bad faith. EPO tells us about the future of patent litigation in Europe with an article on the Unified Patent Court, and 4iP Council describes how to protect your IP rights from wilful infringement.

In addition, Aktion Plagiarius e.V. provides us with an interview on counterfeiting practices and its Plagiarius Prizes.

As per usual, the Bulletin reports information about the European IPR Helpdesk’s past and future events together with the latest updates from our Helpline service, as well as a brand-new IP infringement and enforcement quiz and our usual patent quiz.

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Consultation: EUIPO and the fight against infringement of IPRs

The European Commission has launched a consultation to collect the views of citizens and stakeholders on whether Regulation 386/2012 entrusting the EU Intellectual Property Office with new tasks has met its objective of facilitating and supporting the activities of national authorities, the private sector and EU institutions in the fight against infringements of intellectual property rights, in particular counterfeiting and piracy.

All citizens and organisations are welcome to contribute to this consultation, which will be opened until 2 October 2018. 

You can contribute by filling in the online questionnaire, available in the 23 official EU languages here

Winners of first EU Blockathon announced

The winners of EU Blockathon 2018, which took place from 22-25 June in Brussels, have been announced. The event was the first hackathon dedicated to developing blockchain-based solutions to fight against counterfeiting. 

The Blockathon aimed to explore the potential of blockchain technology to better protect supply chains from infiltration by counterfeit goods.

Find out more about the innovative technologies developed by the finalists and winners here