Category Archive for: ‘Media’

Are those real?

Counterfeit products are out there, but it’s not just consumers who need to be cautious.  The Federal Court recently found that art valuer Peter Gant engaged in misleading and deceptive conduct when he valued (in his capacity as a professional) three drawings at approximately $10k each.  The pieces appeared to be the works of famous Australian artists Charles Blackman and Robert Dickerson.  It was later discovered that the works were fake.  They weren’t copies of actual Blackman and Dickerson works, rather they were drawings “in the style” of Blackman and Dickerson and were falsely

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Tales of nuns, boats, apples and brand protection

One of the most important aspects of trade mark ownership is the ability to control the way a brand is used and, accordingly, protect the brand’s reputation.  Two somewhat unlikely compatriots, Jessica Watson and Mary MacKillop, show how quickly brand management becomes vital when a person or event hits the public spotlight. 

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USA Trademark Board presses the flush on the HERE’S JOHNNY toilet

In a decision which provides a whole new meaning to the phrase “going to the ‘john’”, the John W. Carson Foundation (Foundation) has successfully opposed registration of Johnny Carson’s famous phrase “HERE’S JOHNNY” as a trade mark of portable toilets (proposed mark).  This decision has come about more than 30 years after the same toilet manufacturer first attempted to register the proposed mark.

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Tiger and Lara – the public, the private and the inappropriate

Tiger Woods’ announcement yesterday that he will return to professional golf at the US Masters in Augusta provides a (very loose) opportunity to discuss “how times have changed” when it comes to permissible speech.
 

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Defusing a tricky situation: “The Hurt Locker” under fire

Shortly before winning six Academy Awards, including Best Picture, the makers of The Hurt Locker found themselves subject to a lawsuit filed in the New Jersey District Court on 3 March 2010.  The lawsuit alleges that the makers of the film essentially stole the life story and persona of Iraq War veteran, Master Sergeant Jeffrey Sarver.  Sarver claims Mark Boal, the movie’s screenwriter, was a journalist in his unit for over thirty days in 2004 and used the material for an article in Playboy magazine, and subsequently in the development of the screenplay for Read More

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Defamation in social media: Evony v Everiss

Earlier this month, USA registered company Evony initiated proceedings against UK blogger Bruce Everiss for defamation in the Supreme Court of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia.  Everiss is the author of a popular blog called Bruce on Games.

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Criminal defamation for Facebook slur

Be careful what you write on Facebook!  Adelaide teenager Christopher Cross has recently been convicted for criminal defamation after posting material about a local policeman on a Facebook site.  Cross said that he  “didn’t realise you could get in trouble for things on the internet ”.  Pleading guilty in the Kadina Magistrates Court to criminal defamation, Cross became only the second person in South Australia ever convicted of the rarely used charge.  He now has a criminal record and was sentenced to a 2 year good behaviour bond.
 

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Cash for comment rules for bloggers?

From 1 December 2009, North America’s Federal Trade Commission  (FTC)  (the US equivalent of the ACCC) wants bloggers, including Twitter users, to make it clear when they have received cash or products in exchange for writing positive reviews, endorsements and testimonials.  The FTC’s new Guidelines Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising announced in October 2009 have proved very controversial.

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UPDATE: ACCC says “STOP” to a mobile premium service’s misleading advertisements

On June 5, shortly after the registration of the premium mobile services industry code (discussed here), the Federal Court made declarations that AMV Holding had breached sections 52 and 53 of the TPA in their “BLiNG” advertisements for premium mobile services, published in the popular “Dolly”, “Girlfriend”, and “TV Hits” magazines (ACCC v AMV Holding Ltd [2009] FCA

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