|WIPO staff agree that last week's|
conflagration is a lot more
interesting than Geneva's
boring old jet'deau
For the purposes of WIPO's registration services, (PCT, Madrid System, Hague System, Lisbon System, Arbitration and Mediation Center), WIPO was closed for business on October 27 and 28, 2011.
The meeting of the Standing Committee on the Law of Trademarks, Industrial Designs and Geographical Indications (SCT), which was to end on October 28, 2011, was suspended at mid-day on October 27, 2011. Further information will be provided by the Secretary to the Committee.
whether IP really does create employment. Kinglsey Egbuonu's 20th visit to an African jurisdiction, in search of some sort of online presence for its IP offices, takes him to Gabon. PatLit has now concluded its mini-series of posts on the America Invents Act, kindly crafted for it by Faegre & Benson, with this piece on patent marking requirements. Finally, the 1709 Blog advertises a copyright debate on whether the recent controversial Meltwater ruling in England and Wales means the end of browsing: full details are available here.
|What! Scrap the UK's|
registered design regime?
Why didn't I think of that
Are Slovak customs uniforms really going into the bin? The IPKat's new friend Zuzana Hecko (Allen & Overy, Bratislava) informs him of a significant development in her corner of United Europe. She explains that, earlier this month the Slovak President signed the draft act on the Unification of the Slovak Customs Authority and the Slovak Tax Directorate, which will come into force on 1 January 2012. Under the new law, customs authorities will be merged with the tax directorate, to form a new 'Financial Administration'. The uniforms of customs officers will thus become part of the country's recyclable waste and will be replaced by formal suits (the deterrent effect of which is somewhat questionable). Zuzana comments:
|Slovakia: a small country with a big, big border ...|
"These developments are rather worrying because they carry the risk of customs officers becoming more focused on the 'financial' aspects of counterfeiting, such as tax evasion, rather than on the protection of IP rights as such. Sectors other than alcoholic spirits or tobacco should pay close attention to these developments. The changes are also likely to impede the anticipated creation of a specialised IP Unit within the customs authorities and an IP Monitoring Centre -- which are currently in the process of formation -- but a question mark now hangs over their future. This is even more worrying, given (i) the poor seizure statistics in Slovakia, which are in fact the lowest in the EU (only 11 detentions were reported to the European Commission last year) and (ii) an external border with Ukraine.
However, right-holders should take heart and remember that the Slovak (and Czech) customs, apart from having the power to act on the borders, also have the power to act in the internal market where the numbers of seizures are not as hopeless as on the border. Right-holders will have to submit specific customs applications for action in the internal market (different from the EU-wide customs applications for action based on regulation 1383/2003) to the customs authorities".