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European Commission proposes Standard Essential Patent Licensing Regulation

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European Commission Author  EmDee  Licence  CC BY-SA 4.0  Source  Wikipedia Commons Jane Lambert In the last few years, there has been a spate of litigation throughout the world between businesses that have acquired large portfolios of patents that are essential for compliance with a manufacturing standard which are known as "standard essential patents" ("SEP")  and the world's consumer electronics manufacturers known as "implementors" who want to use their patents.  Standard setting institutions such as ETSI  require the proprietors of SEPs to license their patents to implementors on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory ("FRAND") terms. Such an arrangement ought to work very well.   As Mr Justice Marcus Smith said in Koninklijke Philips NV v Asustek Computer Inc. and others [2020] EWHC 29 (Ch) (17 January 2020) at paragraph [7 (4)]: "Standard Essential Patents can be of great value to their holders. Holders can expect a substantial

Traditional Knowledge and Trade Marks

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  Author Marcel Krüger   Licence CC BY-SA 3.0   Source Wikimedia Commons Jane Lambert A few days ago the Intellectual Property Law Association of Nigeria  referred me to a thread of tweets by a Nigerian national who was shocked that a private limited company in the United Kingdom could register the name of some 70 million people as a British trade mark.  S.4 (3) of  The Trade Marks Act 1994  prevents the registration of national emblems and the emblems of certain international organizations as trade marks and s.3 (a) the registration of signs that are contrary to public policy, but it does not specifically exclude the registration of the names of tribes or peoples.  Having previously spoken at a webinar organized by that Nigerian IP Law association I offered to advise and assist it pro bono in this matter. My offer has not yet been accepted. I guess that is because the complainant had already carried out his research and anticipated what my advice was likely to be. Having been marrie

Celebrating World IP Day

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Standard YouTube Licence Jane Lambert Today is World IP Day , an international festival of innovation and creativity to celebrate the entry into force of the Convention establishing the World Intellectual Property Organization  on 26 April 1970. The World Intellectual Property Organization ("WIPO")  is the UN specialist agency for intellectual property with responsibility for administering most of the world's intellectual property treaties , formulating future policy for the protection of intellectual assets  and resolving intellectual property disputes .  The WIPO has 193 member states  each of which is encouraged to celebrate World IP Day.  Particulars of those celebrations are posted to the World Intellectual Property Day Events Calendar . The United Kingdom is contributing 6 events this year: IP With Guy Fox on 18 April 2021 The Scottish Bar's 13th World IP Conference  organized by the Faculty of Advocates in Edinburgh on 23 April 2021 Leeds Central Library'

Cake Wars

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Author Illustratedjc   Licence CC BY-SA 3.0   Source Wikimedia Commons   Jane Lambert Marks & Spencer's claim against Aldi over its Cuthbert the Caterpillar cake has attracted the interest of the general public (see  M&S begins legal action against Aldi over Colin the Caterpillar cake   16 April 2021 BBC website).  Within a few hours, I had received emails about the claim from a colleague in chambers, my senior clerk and the winner of a TV cooking contest.  Checking Linkedin the next morning, I saw that the leading Welsh IP solicitor Jonty Gordon had posted: "Well i chdi wylio newyddion Cymraeg bore ma felly" ("Gotta watch the Welsh language news this morning"). And the Director of the Menai Science Park Pryderi ap Rhisiart  wrote: " Colin vs Cuthbert Edrych mlaen i drafod yr achos yma gyda Jane Lambert a Jonty Gordon - solicitor y tro nesa welai nhw! Look forward to discussing this case with Jane and Jonty the next time I see them!" Had th

The World's First Patent for the Magnetic Compass

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Author Karl Bodmer  Welsh coracles in America   Jane Lambert Nearly 800 years before the Mimosa set sail for Chubut, Madoc, one of the sons of King Owain ap Gruffudd and a small band of retainers landed near New Bern in North Carolina.  Researchers of the Pre-Columban Civilization Department of Boondock State University have discovered that stone fragments in a hitherto undeciphered script that were discovered on the banks of the Missouri river at the end of the 19th century are in a language closely related to modern Welsh.    Dated about 1500 the fragments trace the history of Madoc's landing in Craven county, their welcome by, and assimilation with, indigenous Americans, their expeditions across the Appalachian mountains and the creation of a brilliant Celtic-Indigenous American civilization known as "the Mandans" that subsisted until the arrival of European settlers in the late 17th and early 18th centuries. The reason I mention these discoveries is that one of the

China Increases its Lead in International Patent Applications

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Standard youtube Licence Jane Lambert The Patent Cooperation Treaty ("PCT") is an international agreement that makes it cheaper and easier for inventors or their employers to apply for patents for their inventions in more than one country. Readers who are unfamiliar with the PCT will find a very good video on the agreement on the WIPO website. The treaty came into force in 1978. In every year of the subsistence of the treaty up to 2019, the USA made more applications than any other country.   In 2019 China nosed ahead of the USA with 59,193 applications compared to the USA's 57,499. In 2020 it increased its lead to 68,720 over the USA's 59,230 (see  Annex 1: International patent applications by origin (PCT System)  to the press release  Innovation Perseveres: International Patent Filings via WIPO Continued to Grow in 2020 Despite COVID-19 Pandemic   2 March 2021). The number of applications from the UK also increased from 5,773 in 2019 to 5,912 in 2020 whereas th

Does Your IP Strategy still work?

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  Author  Furdur  Source  Wikipedia Jane Lambert The purpose of intellectual property is to protect investment in developing a revenue generating asset. That is the reason for the business strategy that I outlined in Putting IP at the Hear of your Business Plan   2 Jan 2015.  That strategy identifies the optimum legal protection for the intellectual assets likely to contribute most to your business and the steps needed to enforce such protection. For a lot of businesses, the optimum legal protection was an EU trade mark a registered Community design or, in a few cases, a Community plant variety. These ceased to apply to the UK from 23:00 on 31 Dec 2020 though art 54 of the Agreement on the Withdrawal of the UK from the EU  provided for the assets that had been protected by those rights to continue to be protected in the UK by s corresponding British trade mark, registered design or plant variety. The withdrawal agreement ensured continued subsistence of the legal protection for those