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Beyond registration – enforcing your trade mark

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Trade mark protection does not end at registration, and trade mark enforcement does not need to involve lengthy litigation or extensive legal fees for brand owners. Having a good trade mark enforcement strategy is essential in ensuring that a brand owner’s trade mark not only remains proprietary to them, but that it also does not become vulnerable to genericism.

Huawei fends off Chanel in EU trade mark clash

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French luxury fashion house Chanel has lost its latest attempt to block the registration of a trade mark applied for by Chinese technological giant Huawei Technologies.

Brexit 2020 and your registered designs: what you need to know

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Having formally left the European Union (EU) on 31 January 2020, the United Kingdom (UK) is now in the transition period, which allows it to remain part of the EU intellectual property (IP) system until 31 December 2020. That’s only a few weeks away.

Naming a new and unique thing

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“If a man (or woman) invents a new article and protects it by a patent, then during the term of the patent, they will of course have a legal monopoly, but when the patent expires all the world may make the article, and if they may make the article they may say that they are making the article, and for that purpose use the name which the patentee has attached to it during the time when he had the legal monopoly of the manufacture.” - Lord Davey in the case of Cellular Clothing Co v Maxton & Murray

Our virtual selves – IP implications of virtual reality

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Virtual reality has been on the rise in the past years and is a growing and dynamic area of technological advancement and development. In 2020, through necessity, many of us have found ourselves conducting various aspects of our lives, everything from business meetings to birthday parties, through virtual platforms.

Protecting and cultivating innovation in a remote working environment – a...

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If one accepts that innovation is crucial to business sustainability especially in the disruption era in which we live, there appears to be a need to better explain the purpose of intellectual property and how these rights together with workplace policies on performance can assist businesses adapt and compete.

Protective laws when naming and marketing products

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A case in point is the UK Intellectual Property Office’s (UKIPO) recent decision to refuse French company Les Grands Chais de France’s (LGCF) application for registration for the trade mark 'Nosecco' for non-alcoholic wines. The UKIPO held that the name Nosecco would evoke the image of the increasingly popular geographical indication (GI) Prosecco in consumers’ minds.

Discovery vs Liberty – When is use of a trade mark...

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Various Discovery companies took Liberty Group Limited to court over Liberty’s use of Discovery’s VITALITY and DISCOVERY registered trademarks in relation to the Liberty Lifestyle Protection Plan.

A horse by the same name?

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The Pretoria High Court has ordered the cancellation of many trade marks in the name of LA Group (Pty) Limited, including for POLO and logos which include a polo player and pony.  The court found that the marks were not distinctive and do not function as a badge of origin.    

Trade marks – use it or lose it!

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It is important that a trade mark is used as non-use could lead to the cancellation of the mark, if it has not been used for 5 years, which is illustrated by the PRIMARK case which has resulted in the removal of the mark from the South African trade marks register.

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