The IPKat is delighted to discover from his friends at WIPO that the Republic of Bulgaria has notified its accession to the Singapore Treaty on the Law of Trademarks and that the Republic of Honduras has done the same for the Trademark Law Treaty (TLT). The date of entry into force of the Singapore Treaty won't be known until a critical number of countries sign up for it. The TLT is a different kettle of fish, though: it's already up-and-running and will take effect with regard to Honduras on 22 April 2008 (sources: WIPO notices Singapore No. 4 and TLT No. 47).
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If you are interested in what constitutes "trade mark use" for the purpose of infringement, there's a note on the Class 46 European trade mark blog concerning litigation before the 's-Hertogenbosch Court of Appeal in Red Bull v Winters and Smart Drinks. Essentially, is there a difference between applying a trade mark to goods and applying goods to the trade mark? In this case the alleged infringement consisted of filling with drink a number of cans that were already marked with the allegedly infringing signs. To find out what the court thought, read on ...
Thanks again to Simon Haslam (Abel & Imray) for this BBC link to news that French President Nicolas Sarkozy and his girlfriend Carla Bruni are suing low-cost airline Ryanair over a picture of the couple it used in an advert. The photo shows a thought bubble coming from Ms Bruni, saying: "With Ryanair, all my family can attend my wedding". The former model is seeking 500,000 euros ($743,000; £373,000) - the amount she says her photo normally costs. Possessing an unusually long memory for a small furry feline, the IPKat recalls that easyJet have used the same marketing technique, but chose different victims.