Archives for: ‘John Swinson’

Fair dealing or freeloading? iTunes previews to face the music…

Earlier this month, the Supreme Court of Canada heard five copyright cases on appeal from Canada’s Copyright Board (the “Board”).  The cases have far reaching implications for copyright owners and users alike.  The legality of photocopying textbooks for school children and previewing songs on iTunes is at stake, as is the right of copyright owners to receive royalties for music downloaded by consumers as part of video games. 

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Making its Mark: “Occupy Wall Street” Files Trade Mark Application

On 24 October 2011, organisers from the unincorporated association “Occupy Wall Street” filed an application to trade mark their name with the U.S Patent and Trademark Office (“USPTO”).  The movement is interested in protecting the phrase for merchandise such as bags, clothing, luggage and headwear, in newsletters and periodicals and on a website featuring educational materials related to the Occupy Wall Street movement including photographic, audio, video and prose presentations.

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UK phone hacking scandal – the copyright edition

As many of us know, deleting something from a phone, laptop or computer doesn’t mean it is actually “deleted.”  This is because deleting a file (including a text message) is but the first step in permanently removing that file from any electronic device.  It’s why you are readily able to restore your uni paper, Christmas card list, or uber-important work document (phew!) from the Recycle Bin on your desktop. 

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Copyright or copy-wrong? US Supreme Court hears arguments in a case concerning the shrinking public domain

On 5 October 2011, the United States Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Golan, et al., v. Holder, et al. (docket no.

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Mambo minus “M” equals 100% Mabo (Mambo – M = 100% Mabo)

Last week, the clothing company, Mambo, agreed to cease opposition proceedings against Malcolm Mabo (the son of Eddie Mabo of Mabo v Queensland (No 2) (1992) 175 CLR 1).

Malcolm Mabo, a Palm Island artist, is planning to start a clothing company to promote authentic indigenous art and employment, under the brand, “Mabo”, and sought to trade mark the name.  When Mambo found out, it instituted opposition proceedings, contending that the brands would be “deceptively similar”. 

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Ye olde trade mark dispute: when a rose, is but a rose, just not that rose

The civil, genteel and room temperature world of English ale has been politely shaken to the core with claims of passing off, a tort most foul.  At stake is that most sacred of English cows – ale – fought out between two bespoke breweries, the old fashion way – in the England and Wales High Court.  According to the court:

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Parody (In the Butt)

On 13 July, the alleged copyright infringement against Viacom for stealing the YouTube video “What What (In the Butt)” was dismissed, with a United States federal judge affirming the “fair use” justification. In November 2010, Brownmark Films (the producer of the video) sued Viacom and Comedy Central for copyright infringement over a South Park episode (the 171st episode to be exact) entitled “Canada on Strike” which aired in 2008.

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Mongols’ logo a no-go?

After 3 years of litigation, on 29 June, a U.S. Federal Court judge has ruled that the notorious U.S. bikie gang, the Mongols Motorcycle Club, can keep their name and logo. The two registered trademarks of the club are the “verbal mark” which is the word Mongols, and the “visual mark” which is the logo. The club’s trade marked logo depicts a man with a ponytail riding a chopper (that’s a motorcycle to us bike unenthusiasts) which is synonymous with the persona of the club.

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Obama, Osama, Cinderella?

Make a list of all the action films you’ve seen.  Now, delete any films that include members of the Special Forces, or the intelligence services.  You are left with a couple of Eddie Murphy movies and the Star Wars trilogy (original blend only, thanks). 

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