This weekly update on Trademarks and Geographical Indications (GI) is brought to you by the Trademark experts of BananaIP (BIP) Counsels.
Trademark thought of the week:
“Trademark is a studiously crafted personality profile of an individual, institution, corporation, product or service.”- Daniel J. Boorstin
Trademark Stats from the Indian Trademark Office, between 8th February 2017 to 15th February 2017 :
- Total Trademark applications examined by Trademark Office: 11095
- Total applications disposed through show cause hearings: 1237
- Total applications published in the trademark journal: 8578
- Total registrations granted: 8517
- Total hearing notices issued: 2686
- Total renewal notices issued: 1482
Trademark case updates:
Delhi High Court dismisses Sun Pharma’s plea against Mylan.
The Delhi High Court has refused the plea of Sun Pharmaceuticals to provide any interim relief against Mylan Laboratories in a trademark infringement case initiated against usage of the mark SOXPLAT. While it is a fact that Sun Pharma is the registered proprietor of the mark OXIPLAT, the Honourable High Court stated that “the mere fact that the plaintiff (Sun Pharma) is the prior user or registrant of its trademark is inconsequential” considering the differences between the prefixes OXI and SOX used by both Parties. The same issue is also on dispute before the Intellectual Property Appellate Tribunal (IPAB) where both parties are seeking to invalidate each other’s trademark registrations.
Additional Metropolitan Magistrate finds prima facie case against Jolly LLB 2 producers.
Jolly LLB 2 producers are in legal tussle with the shoe manufacturer Bata for usage of the brand name BATA as part of a dialogue in the film. Bata alleges that the Film dilutes and defames the value of the brand BATA before the public. Bata has initiated one infringement and passing off action before the Delhi High Court and a criminal defamation action before the Metropolitan Magistrate.
While the trademark case has been settled between the Parties, on 8th February 2017, the Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate had found that there exists sufficient grounds for proceeding against all accused under Section 500 (Defamation) and Section 120B (Criminal Conspiracy). The matter is now posted for hearing on 22nd February 2017.
Trademark Office Updates:
Trademark Office initiates a drive to identify and dispose pending applications with formality issues.
A notification issued by the Trademark Office on 13th February 2017 identifies the list of trademark applications that are filed before December 2016 which are kept pending by the Office due to formality objections. All agents and/or applicants are requested to go through the list and respond to the formality objections with the object of expediting the registration process.
Expedited examination process for Trademarks underway.
The Trademark office has initiated an expedited examination process for all applications filed after December 2016. Numerous agents have reported that the Registry has accelerated examination process and are issuing examination reports for applications filed in the month of January 2017. This is a well-appreciated move on the part of the Registry and can help in reducing the back log within the office. We hope that the expedited process is also extended to show cause hearings and these applications may not be kept pending for long time after filing the examination responses.
Geographical Indications (GI) news and updates:
Nilambur Teak to get GI tag?
Nilambur Teak may soon be granted a GI tag if all goes well. The Nilambur forests are known for their tribal settlements, vast rain forests, waterfalls and the world’s first Teak Museum. Just 2 kilometres (1.2 mi) from Nilambur town, there is the oldest teak plantation in the world, the Conolly’s Plot. It is named after H. V. Conolly, the British Malabar district collector, who was instrumental in planting teak there. The efforts of the IPR Cell of Kerala Agricultural University (KAU) to secure the GI status for this unique timber variety with the support of Nilambur Teak Heritage Society, Kerala Forest Research Institute and Department of Forests are likely to yield results on the 28th of February 2017, when the consultative group will meet the applicant (representatives from the producer group) to ascertain the correctness of the particulars of the GI application made in reference to Nilambur teak
BananaIP (BIP) News & Updates:
BananaIP acquires Intellepedia and Invenomics.
BananaIP has recently acquired registered trade marks, Intellepedia and Invenomics, from its founder Dr. Kalyan C. Kankanala. While INTELLEPEDIA is being used for the IP News Centre, Invenomics will be used for the new division launched for offering strategic IP services to companies for business benefit. This strategically expands BananaIP’s trade mark portfolio to more than ten marks.
Trademark Licensing/Acquisition updates:
Ambassador Trade Mark sold for just eighty crores.
The Hindu reported that the C.K. Birla Group has sold the trade mark “AMBASSADOR” to Peugeot for just eighty crore rupees. Though we no longer see new cars on the road, it seems that the sum Hindustan Motors would receive is not very high for the popular brand, which still has strong consumer association. From the number, it is reasonable to expect that the deal might have other business benefits in addition to financial compensation.
International Trademark Updates:
Can’t Get Kylie Trademark Out of My Head.
IP Kat has reported that Kylie Minogue, the popular Pop Star, had opposed trade marks for endorsement and advertising services for the mark Kylie in USA. The applications were filed by Kylie Jenner, reported as a secondary reality television star. The pop star has recently withdrawn the oppositions leading one to conclude that there might have been some kind of settlement with payment to Kylie Minogue .
“Fake News” subject of Trademark Filings in USA.
Three agencies have reportedly filed trade mark applications for the phrase “Fake News” in USA after President Trump’s comment on 12th January, 2017. The trade marks have been filed for animations and cartoons, board games, and apparel such as t-shirts. While the protectability of the said trade marks is questionable, the extent to which IP is engrained in US businesses is interesting to note.
Alibaba Boycotts an Enforcement Agency.
Alibaba has announced that it would no longer respond to take down requests by zhouWangwei Technology, an enforcement agency, on the grounds of malicious use of its take down system. It seems that any anti-counterfeiting action filed by the said enforcement agency will no longer be entertained by Alibaba. Can a market place make such a decision? Shouldn’t each take down request be assessed on merits? Developments in this matter will be interesting.
Well, this sums up the Trademarks and GI news for this week. Subscribe now for weekly updates on Patents, Trademarks, Copyrights and more on your phone and email.
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