Interesting Trademarks, Recent Trademark Cases, International Trademark Updates, Domain Name Disputes, Geographical Indication updates and more brought to you by the Trademark Team of BananaIP Trade Mark News:
Trademark quote of the week
“A brand is a living entity and it is enriched or undermined cumulatively over time, the product of a thousand small gestures” —Michael Eisner
The Trademark Registry has seen an increase of 45 % in its activity this week as compared to the previous week.
|Particulars||Last week||This week||Change in %|
|Total Trademark applications examined by Trademark Office||7704||9831|| An increase of 27.6%|
|Total applications disposed of through show cause hearings||769||1119||An increase of 45.5%|
|Total applications published in the trademark journal||10280||9328||A decrease of 9.2%|
|Total registrations granted||7111||8221||An increase of 15 %|
|Total hearing notices issued||2690||1704||A decrease of 36%|
|Total renewal notices issued||2102||3196||An increase of 52%|
Total number of Applications Examined by the Trademark Office in this year: 190031
The Swiss chocolate has been granted registration for its shape, which depicts the mountain, the Swiss Alps. The registration was granted in 2000 under class 30 for Cocoa, chocolate, cocoa and chocolate goods.
RECENT TRADEMARK CASES
Louis Vuitton vs Gaurav Bhatia & Ors
The Plaintiff had filed an infringement suit seeking a permanent injunction against the defendants, restraining them from infringing the trademark and other intellectual property rights of the goods of the plaintiff. Louis Vitton, the Plaintiff, is a registered company in France engaged in producing lifestyle goods. The Plaintiff opened its first exclusive store in New Delhi in 2003. Their products are sold only through the exclusive stores and outlets and their goods are available only at the prices fixed by the plaintiff. Their products have a widespread recognition in India. Defendants, a trading company operates an e-commerce website www.digaaz.com on which it offers for sale lifestyle and fashion products. Plaintiff alleged that defendant is offering for sale and supplying counterfeit products bearing several registered trademarks of the plaintiff on their website. The court found that two FIRs were already registered against the defendants for indulging into the supply of counterfeit products and they were arrested and remained in judicial custody which clearly proves that defendants have infringed the trademark of the plaintiff. The court, therefore, restrained the defendants from manufacturing, selling and offering for sale, advertising, directly or indirectly dealing in wallets, handbags, suitcases, luggage, purses, belts, footwear, jewellery or any other goods bearing the plaintiff’s trademark “Louis Vuitton” or the Louis Vuitton logo. The defendants are also restrained from using the domain name and directed to remove the said links.
INTERNATIONAL TRADEMARK UPDATES
‘Essential Phone’ alleged for trademark infringement by Spigen
The Essential Phone which is about to be launched in the United States soon by Andy Rubin, the person who created Android, has recently been alleged of trademark infringement by the famous smartphone accessory and case maker, Spigen. Although Spigen is not involved in the manufacture and distribution of smartphones, it has claimed that Essential phone will create confusion in the minds of the public as Spigen’s brand “Essential” is already being used for battery packs and other phone accessories. In response to Spigen’s cease and desist notice, Essential has officially responded stating that their accusation is “without merit” and they shall respond accordingly.
Swedish entrepreneur files for ‘Covfefe’ trademark
The social media recently was abuzz over the word ‘covfefe’ when it was used by U.S. President Donald Trump in one of his tweets on Twitter. The tweet had read ‘Despite the constant negative press covfefe.’ The tweet went viral and the word ‘covfefe’ was trending for a long time. According to Urban Dictionary, Covfefe is once the secret name of an ancient tentacle monster that white supremacists fornicate with. In order to exploit the current scenario, a Swedish entrepreneur and fashion designer by the name of Per Holknekt filed a trademark application with the Swedish Patent and Registration Office for the word ‘Covfefe’. This is perhaps the most talked about word in the world right now, and it will not be wrong to say that it may turn out to be a worthwhile decision taken by the Swedish entrepreneur.
Microsoft files for peculiar ‘S’ logo
The multinational technology giant, Microsoft Corporation has filed for an ‘S’ logo just before revealing Xbox Project Scorpio. As per the trademark application, the ‘S’ logo is to be used in relation to “Video game consoles for use with an external display screen or monitor; video game interactive remote control units” and “Computer game software for use with personal computers and video game consoles”. Microsoft is planning to disclose its Xbox Project Scorpio on 6th June 2017 and it would be interesting to find out whether the aforementioned logo would be used for the same or not.
DOMAIN NAME DISPUTES
Google fights the genericide battle
Google has once again protected its highly valuable trademark in a court decision. The U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday gave an order in favour of the technology giant, Google, ruling that sufficient evidence was not presented to show that the word ‘Google’ has become generic in nature. The matter arose in 2012 when two individuals got registration for as many as 763 domain names that combined the word ‘google’ with other words. Google filed a complaint to acquire the domain names through a transfer under the Uniform Domain Name Dispute Resolution Policy (UDRP). UDRP disagreed that the Google mark has become generic, and ordered the domain names transferred to Google noting that the marks were confusingly similar in nature. On appeal the Arizona district court upheld the decision of UDRP which has now been upheld by the Ninth circuit.
GEOGRAPHICAL INDICATION UPDATES
Traditional Rattan handicrafts moves for GI Protection
Rattan handicrafts enjoy a worldwide patronage which is mastered by artisans of Thaikkal and Thulasiyaendirapuram villages in Nagapattinam district. The handmade rattan products in these villages are unique due to the superior quality of the raw materials used. Artisans even claim that rattan products hold medicinal properties. In various reports and studies conducted, approximately 500 rattan-based furniture industries in Annaikaranchatram and Gopalasamuthiram existed more than 100 years ago. To protect and promote the rattan handicrafts, the State of Tamilnadu has filed an application with GI Registry, Chennai to obtain a GI protection.
BIP TIP OF THE WEEK
Online businesses and e-commerce portals
Online businesses and e-commerce portals must take appropriate steps to avoid making infringing/counterfeit products available for sale on their portals. They should establish very clear and well defined take down policies and processes to defend themselves from infringement actions. The terms and conditions with vendors must include clauses addressing third party IP infringement.