|You won't be finding any Cuban-made Havana Club rum|
in the Supreme Court Justices' Conference Room
"In light of this decision, Pernod Ricard announces the registration of the trademark Havanista® with the USTPO. Produced and bottled in Cuba, Havanista® is a premium Cuban rum specifically aimed at the U.S market, which will be launched if the embargo is lifted. Havanista® will be a celebration of Cuban taste and culture in a genuine Cuban rum. It will benefit from the same high-level production processes and quality requirements as the Havana Club range."For more information see Pernod's Press Release on the decision here.
|The view of Director Kappos from the AmeriKat's |
computer this afternoon as she listed to almost
2.5 hours of testimony....exciting times...
As as well as outlining the continued work on the Trial Rules and various international arrangements such as the Patent Prosecution Highway, Director Kappos stated that with the adoption fo the AIA:
"the U.S. is now able to implement an optimal 21st century harmonized patent system – one that international negotiations have anticipated for the last 25 years. Congress has enabled the USPTO to not only act, but to lead in realizing a vision of an IP world in which national and regional patent systems are coordinated to create an optimal environment for technological innovation and diffusion. Passage of the AIA has provided an opportunity to restart long-stalled discussions with our foreign counterparts toward substantive harmonization that will help U.S. businesses succeed in the global business environment.
The USPTO is working to capture this opportunity, reaching out to our stakeholders and our counterparts in patent offices throughout the world, to work toward substantive patent law harmonization. During the first week of April, I visited several of our foreign counterparts to discuss this unrivalled opportunity for substantive patent law harmonization. During these conversations I stressed that a key issue to realizing international harmonization is European adoption of a modern grace period. The grace period has been adopted in many patent systems throughout the world and is recognized as a global best practice. We look forward to continuing these discussions."[Merpel imagines that Baroness Wilcox will be taking note of such beautiful political soundbytes on the merits of "international patent harmonization" in case she is ever called back before the House of Common's Scrutiny Committee to give evidence on the European unitary patent proposals.]
Director Kappos also stated that the recent spate of mobile phone and technology patent disputes was not a by-product of a flawed patent system.
Congressman Watt: "Based on recent press accounts, technology companies seem to be engaged in a so-called patent arms race. Tech companies are spending a lot of money to buy patent portfolios and suing to block technologies in every conceivable venue...Over the course of this Congress we frequently heard representatives of the tech community argue that copyright infringement suits brought against tech companies by content owners stifle innovation. By that logic the rash of patent cases brought against tech companies by tech companies might stifle innovation. Can you give us your take on this and does litigation to protect intellectual property rights stifle innovation? Is there any reason to think that copyright litigation against tech companies stifles technological innovation any more or less than patent litigation?
Director Kappos: No, I don't think there is any reason to believe that any copyright or patent lawsuits of the kind that we are seeing in the so-called smart phone wars are a sign of stifling technological innovation. In fact much to the contrary... We've seen this movie many times before. We saw it when Boulton and Watt got into their fights in the 18th Century in England over the patents that started the Industrial Revolution...We saw it when the sewing machine was invented and then we saw it when the telegraph was invented...It starts with fundamental technology innovation that is transformative in nature. Then others come along and want to do incremental innovation on top of it. The original innovators, let's say the Apples of the world, as an example...have intellectual property positions resulting from massive investments, they seek to enforce those investments to level the playing field in some way and you have a dust-up as we are seeing right now. I don't believe its a sign that there is anything wrong with the innovation environment in the US, in fact I think it is a by-product of a very healthy overall innovation environment. These things happen, they sort themselves out over time -its a strength of our system that we have strong and balanced intellectual property rights that lets folks play their hands out in the way they are...I don't think its in any way a sign that there is some fundamental problem with patents across the board. It would be different if we were talking about non-innovators involved in these patent wars, but we are talking about some of the most innovative companies on the planet...I see it as a market reaction to a market development...in a tremendously competitive market."Is Director Kappos correct or is it reasonable to point some blame on some arguably improperly granted patents?
|The label she wishes she could|
find in a new raincoat....dreams...
|World Industries's skate shoe subject to Adidas's|
The letter 'W': The letter which features on the side of the upper sole of World Industries's skater shoe (and which also stands for "World") which is the subject of a trade mark complaint brought by Adidas against the California based manufacturer. Adidas, whose famous three-stripe logo, filed its claim in Oregon federal court last week alleging that World has made unauthorized use of its three-stripes trade mark. Adidas's North American headquarters are located in Portland, Oregon. Adidas also sued Big 5 Sporting Goods which featured the offending shoe in a full-page ad. In the ad, an Adidas "Tip Off 2" basketball shoe with three stripes was positioned next to World's "Major" skate shoe. According to Adidas's complaint, the retailer also positioned the shoes next to each other in their stores. To Merpel and the AmeriKat, both can see, not three stripes, but the tip of King Triton's trident. According to World Industries' parent's president, Scott Chantos "we cap the top of our W so it looks like a pitchfork. And one of our logos is a devil holding a pitchfork." "Ahh...so not quite Greek mythology reference we were hoping for", says the AmeriKat. Do readers see or associate Adidas's three stripes with the shoe?