European IP Bulletin - Issue 80, May 2011

by McDermott Will & Emery
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PATENTS:

Pilot Drilling Control Ltd v Smith International Inc: UKIPO Refuses Request for Confidentiality

In Pilot Drilling Control Ltd v Smith International Inc BL O/046/11, the UK Intellectual Property Office (UKIPO) has refused a request for confidentiality in respect of proceedings regarding the ownership of a patent. There was not a real risk of harm from disclosure, whether in the form of direct commercial damage or by inhibiting a party from putting forward their best case.

Does “Reconditioning” Amount to “Making” The Product? Schütz (UK) Ltd v Werit (UK) Ltd

BACKGROUND

In Schütz (UK) Ltd v Werit (UK) Ltd [2011] EWCA Civ 303, the Court of Appeal of England and Wales has ruled upon whether “reconditioning” amounts to “making” the product within the meaning of Section 60(1) of the Patents Act 1977. Schütz Ltd, the exclusive licensee of a patent for a product consisting of a bottle fitted inside a cage, appealed against Mr Justice Floyd’s dismissal of its infringement claim against Werit, which manufactured its own bottles, designed to fit Schützs cages. Werit cross-appealed the judge’s finding that the patent was valid.

TRADE MARKS:

Non-UK Website Infringement of UK Trade Marks

BACKGROUND

In Yell Ltd v Louis Giboin [2011] EWPCC 9 the Patents County Court found that use of the word mark TRANSPORT YELLOW PAGES and the “walking fingers” logo on a non- UK website infringed Yell Ltd’s well-known registered trade marks in the United Kingdom.

CJEU Extends Injunction Granted in One Jurisdiction to All of The European Union

In relation to DHL Express France SAS v Chronopost SA, C- 235/09, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) has held that an injunction granted by a Community Trade Mark (CTM) court under the CTM Regulation (40/94/EEC, now replaced by 207/2009/EC) in one EU Member State has effect, in principle, throughout the European Union.

Seemingly No Statute of Limitations in Bringing Complaints Under UDRP

BACKGROUND

The Complainant, Sportingbet Plc held Community Trade Mark (CTM) registrations for figurative marks SPORTINGBETCASINO and SPORTINGBETCASINO.COM. The disputed domain name, sportingbetcasino.com, was registered on 5 October 2001. From 20 May 2010, the domain name resolved to a webpage consisting of a photograph of a turkey together with: “05.02.2010: zzzzzz…” On 2 August 2010, the Complainant’s solicitors sent a cease and desist letter to the Respondent, Rough Media, referring to the turkey picture and stating that their client considered this to be disparaging and damaging to its goodwill and reputation. The Respondent replied, stating “there is no case to answer”. From 5 January 2011, the disputed domain name resolved to a webpage entitled “Sporting Bet Casino A blog about random thoughts and observations”. The page included criticism of an Indian web developer and Microsoft.

COPYRIGHT:

The Legality of Ordering ISPs to Install Filtering and Blocking Systems to Protect IP Rights

BACKGROUND

In Scarlet Extended SA v Société Belge des Auteurs Compositeurs et Editeurs C-70/10, the Advocate General (AG) of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) has given his opinion on whether it is lawful for a national court to impose an order on an internet service provider (ISP) to make in impossible for its customers to send or receive, by means of peer-to-peer software, particular music files.

CONFIDENTIALITY:

England and Wales Court of Appeal Rules on Scope of Liability for Unknowing Use of Confidential Information

BACKGROUND

The Complainant in Vestergaard Frandsen S/A v Bestnet Europe Ltd [2011] EWCA Civ 424 is a manufacturer of insecticidal fabrics. It claimed that Bestnet Europe Ltd’s product, a long lasting anti-mosquito bed net called NetProtect, was developed using Vestergaard’s confidential information contained in a database called Fence, which contained the ingredients and proportions of ingredients used to make long lasting insecticidal nets. Vestergaard claimed that use of its confidential information occurred when the individual Defendants, Mr Larsen and Mrs Sig, left Vestergaard in 2004 and set up Bestnet.

IP LITIGATION:

High Court of England and Wales considers basis for transferring case to Patents County Court

BACKGROUND

In Caljan Rite-Hite Ltd v Sovex Ltd [2011] EWHC 669 (Ch) Mr Justice Kitchin has given a useful judgment on the requirements for transfer of a case from the High Court of England and Wales to the Patents County Court (PCC) under the PCC’s new procedural rules...

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