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A Californian Judge, Gail J Standish, recently dismissed a copyright lawsuit where it was alleged that Taylor Swift had copied lyrics for her popular song "Shake It Off". Taylor Swift is in fact an avid fan of enforcing her own copyright, was facing a $42 million damages claim.   Jesse Graham filed the lawsuit claiming that

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The US Court of Appeals (the Court) recently gave judgment on whether a type of yoga would fall within the remit of copyright in the case of Bikram Yoga College of India v. Evolution Yoga, LLC, 2015 WL 5845415.  The case concerned Bikram yoga – a popular style of yoga developed by Bikram Choudry (the plaintiff in the present case) over 20 years ago which consists of 26 postures and 2 breathing exercise, designed to systematically work every part of the body, and is performed in a hot room.

Continue Reading Can copyright stretch to cover yoga?!

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The Irish High Court has issued a significant decision in Aldi Stores (Ireland) Limited & anor v- Dunnes Stores (No.2) [2015] IEHC 551holding that a plaintiff is entitled as of right to an injunction where a trade mark is infringed in the course of a comparative advertising campaign even where the advertising campaign in question has ended. The defendant has indicated that it will be appealing the finding of liability made by the court.

Continue Reading High Court grants injunction prohibiting further trade mark infringement in relation to advertising campaign which has ended.

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The Irish Patents Office has recently published its Annual Report for 2014 setting out trends, objectivities, activities throughout 2014 and what can be expected in 2015. The Annual Report sets out how the Irish Patent Office has discharged of its statutory functions under the Patents Act 1992 (as amended), the Trade Marks Acts 1996 (as amended), the Industrial Designs Act 2001 and the various statutory rules and regulations made under these Acts. A summary of the key findings are set out below.

Continue Reading Irish Patents Office Annual Report 2014

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In January of this year the Department of Finance (the Department) launched a Public Consultation Process (the Consultation) on the proposed introduction of a corporation tax incentive for income generated from intellectual property (IP) known as the Knowledge Development Box (KDB)(see earlier blog Knowledge Development Box – Launch of Public Consultation Process – "Ireland will play fair, as it has always done, and play to win." – Minister Noonan)

The Consultation sought the views of interested parties on issues such as the scope of IP set to benefit under the regime, the calculation of qualifying income and the mechanism for applying relief. Nearly 40 written submissions were received and on 31 July the Department published a "Feedback Statement" (the Response) commenting on the views expressed as part of the Consultation and setting out possible approaches for the KDB regime.

Continue Reading Department of Finance publishes feedback on the Knowledge Development Box Consultation

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The High Court has refused an application by the Irish Times for injunctions restraining the Times of London from using the words "The Times Irish Edition" in its forthcoming digital Irish edition of the newspaper. The new digital publication will be sold as a part of a subscription package with the Sunday Times and will be solely available digitally. The Irish Times had sought an injunction preventing Times Newspapers Limited (TNL) from using the "The Times Irish Edition" or any other title which may be confusingly similar to The Irish Times. TNL denied that the phrase would create any confusion due to the co-existence of the two publications in Ireland for 150 years as well as the fact that it was common knowledge that they intended to launch an Irish edition.

Continue Reading High Court refuses injunction over Irish edition of the UK Times

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In an earlier update we announced that Ireland is to establish a local division of the Unified Patent Court (UPC), subject to Ireland ratifying the International Agreement on a UPC by way of referendum. The International Agreement was signed by 25 EU Member States on 19 February 2013 and needs to be ratified by at least 13 states, including France, Germany and the United Kingdom to enter into force. There are currently only seven states that have ratified the Agreement with the Preparatory Committee of the UPC (which will remain in operation until the UPC is established) noting that many Member States hope to ratify in 2015.

Continue Reading Irish Ratification of UPC not expected until at least 2016

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Augmented Reality (AR) uses technology to overlay real world, physical environments with virtual components like light, sound, video, images or GPS data.  Once seen as a futuristic and ‘gimmicky’ area, AR is growing at a rapid pace and will soon form part of our everyday technology. Microsoft recently unveiled its AR wearable technology, ‘Hololens’ which is geared towards gaming and design and comes in the form of a headset.

Continue Reading Augmented Reality Poses New Legal Challenges

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The EU General Court has refused to register the ‘Skype’ word and logo marks (the Skype marks) as Community Trade Marks (CTMs) in relation to a range of telecommunications and computer-related goods and services. The General Court’s decision is based upon a likelihood of confusion with Sky’s earlier word CTM SKY (the Sky mark).

Continue Reading EU General Court finds risk of confusion between ‘Sky’ and ‘Skype’ marks