Copycat perfumes and coat-tails: “unfair advantage” in the European Court of Justice

L’Oreal produces and markets a number of well-known fragrances, including the perfumes Trésor, Miracle and Anaïs-Anaïs.  L’Oreal is also the registered owner of a number of marks in relation to these perfumes, including word marks (such as “Trésor”) and figurative marks (covering representations of the bottles and packaging of the perfumes). 

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Subjects: Trade marks

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US court awards $80,000 per song in key P2P filesharing case

Since 2003, the RIAA and major music labels have launched proceedings against approximately 35,000 users of online peer-to-peer (P2P) filesharing networks, including Kazaa.  The majority of users have settled rather than going to court, agreeing to payments of between USD$3,700 and $5,200.  However, Ms Thomas-Rasset refused to agree to a settlement and was the first user to take her case to court.

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Subjects: Copyright

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Final witness statements no longer privileged

Two recent decisions of the Full Federal Court and the NSW Supreme Court have displaced the long-held presumption that final witness statements are protected by legal professional privilege.  The witness statements in question were witness statements that had been served on a party, though were not ultimately relied upon at trial.  These cases suggest that it may now be far easier to obtain final witness statements th read more...

Piracy under fire

Between July 2005 and May 2006, The Pirate Bay website provided a filesharing service utilising the BitTorrent file transfer protocol.  This protocol involves dividing a principal file (eg a MP3 music file) into segments, which can be identified and accessed by locating small “torrent” files containing metadata about the file to be shared and the computer distributing it. read more...

Subjects: Copyright | Technology

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eBay victorious in French battle over counterfeit L’Oreal products

Cosmetics giant L’Oreal launched a trade mark infringement action in France against the online auction house in September 2007, alleging that eBay was not doing enough to combat transactions involving fake L’Oreal perfumes.  Judge Elisabeth Belfort last week ruled in eBay’s favour, finding that eBay had fulfilled its obligation towards other market operators (including L’Oreal) in good faith, by developing eBay’s current anti-counterfeiting measures.  Despite this, Judge Belfort ordered both companies to mediation in order to jointly develop a plan for improvi read more...

Subjects: Trade marks

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