Non-distinctive trademark – According to the EUIPO, the trademark iWatch is not associated to Apple

Publié en October 2018

The Apple Watch is not branded as “iWatch”, although it would put it in line with its pre-existing products/services bearing the well-known ‘i’-prefix, such as iPhone, iPod, iPad, iMac or iCloud. This is mostly due to the difficulties of having the trademark iWatch registered.

The trademark iWatch, filed on 4 December 2013, had been refused for goods in class 14 (“chronometric instruments, timepieces, and bracelets; accessories, parts, components, and cases

EU trademarks: Does the evidence of acquisition of distinctive character through use have to be shown throughout each and every member state?

Publié en September 2018

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) has held that, in order to be accepted for registration as a EU trademark, a sign must have distinctive character, inherent or acquired through use, throughout the European Union and not only in a substantial part or the majority of that territory.

But does it imply that such evidence is required for each and every member state?

It has already been ruled that given

Glen Whisky: scotch or not?

Publié en August 2018

The Scotch Whisky Association is a Scottish organisation protecting the trade in Scottish whisky both in Scotland and abroad. Taking the view that the marketing of a whisky under the designation ‘Glen Buchenbach’ (which is produced by the Waldhorn distillery in Berglen, located in the Buchenbach valley in Swabia, Germany) was infringing the geographical indication ‘Scotch Whisky’, it brought an action before the Landgericht Hamburg (Regional Court in Hamburg, Germany),

EU / China – The battle for technology transfers

Publié en June 2018

Early June 2018, the European Union has initiated proceedings before the World Trade Organisation against China for failing to respect the intellectual property rights of European companies.

Observing that “European companies coming to China are forced to grant ownership or usage rights of their technology to domestic Chinese entities and are deprived of the ability to freely negotiate market-based terms in technology transfer agreements”, the EU decided to take action

The MESSI trademark – More effective in defence than in attack

Publié en June 2018

The footballer (soccer player) Lionel Messi finally obtained the registration of his trademark MESSI but had to contest the opposition based on the earlier mark MASSI for 6 years and all the way to the General Court.

The Board of Appeal of the EUIPO had in fact held that applied to clothing and sports articles not specific to the practice of football (soccer), the applicant had failed to demonstrate that

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