Lawrence Graham's angle on intellectual property, media and sport issues.
Lawrence Graham LLp
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  • Ofcom rules Tulisa tattoo not in breach of broadcasting rules

    Broadcasting regulator Ofcom has ruled that Tulisa Contostavlos's signature arm gesture on the popular ITV singing contest, The X Factor, in which she prominently displays a tattoo which reads "The Female Boss" and was alleged to be an attempt to promote her new perfume "TFB by Tulisa", did not breach Ofcom's Broadcasting Code (the "Code").

    However, Ofcom upheld complaints relating to the promotion of Tulisa's fragrance on the programme's spin-off show, The Xtra Factor, in which "undue prominence" had been given to the perfume in breach of the Code.  The particular area of concern related to the repeated reference to ...

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  • Top Brands of 2011

    Earlier this month, Interbrand released its top 100 brands for 2011 (you can see our blog on last year's results here).

     

    The report ranks the top 100 companies based on how a brand benefits its organisation.  Interbrand assess the financial performance of the branded products or services, the role of the brand and the brand strength when compiling the list. 

     

    Coca Cola remained in top spot for the twelfth year running.  The top 10 remained broadly the same as 2010 except for one notable change.  Nokia which sat in 8th place last year has fallen to 14th ...

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  • Tablet battle continues...

    The Apple v Samsung tablet saga continues to create news this week. Yesterday it was reported that an appeal date has been set for Samsung to challenge the almost EU wide ban on the distributing of its Galaxy Tab. In addition, news today was that pictures comparing the iPad and Galaxy Tab, contained in German court documents, were being called into question on the basis that the differences between the products had been reduced and the scale and dimensions of the products were not realistic.

    The preliminary injunction in favour of Apple was granted by a German court last week, ...

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  • Louboutin sees red in trade mark infringement case

    Paris designer Christian Louboutin has lost his battle against Yves Saint Laurent ("YSL") for trade mark infringement in relation to his shoes which have red outsoles.

    In April 2011, Louboutin issued a trade mark infringement claim in a New York court against fashion rival YSL for using red soles on their shoes.  Louboutin claimed that he was the first designer to develop the idea of having red soles on women's shoes and that YSL's use of red outsoles was virtually identical to his Red Sole Mark and was therefore likely to cause confusion, mistake and deception among the public.  Louboutin ...

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  • Apple spring EU wide injunction on Samsung

    Apple have obtained a preliminary injunction from a German court preventing Samsung from selling its Galaxy Tablet in the EU (except for the Netherlands) due to potential infringement of Apple's patents. This has resulted in European customs officers preventing Galaxy shipments entering the EU. In addition to this success, Apple also obtained a similar court order last week delaying the launch of the latest Galaxy mobile phones and tablets in Australia.  

    This is just a further example of Apple's willingness to enforce its IP rights to prevent its rivals from selling, what it feels, to be, products that infringe ...

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  • London 2012 Games - Don't Get Ambushed!

    Today marks one year until the London Olympics opening ceremony in 2012.  The excitement about the games will continue to build over the coming 12 months with many businesses, particularly in London, looking to take advantage of 'Olympic fever' in their advertising or marketing campaigns.  However, businesses must be careful not to fall foul of the rules governing ambush marketing.

    What is Ambush Marketing?

    Ambush marketing is a form of strategic marketing which is designed to capitalise upon the awareness, attention, goodwill, and other benefits, generated by having an association with an event without an official or direct connection to ...

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  • News of the World Over and Out

    The closure of the News of the World ("NOTW") newspaper following the phone hacking scandal has gained plenty of press over the last week but we wanted to address the specific IP implications of its closure.

     

    Brand Damage Control

     

    The closure of NOTW was a decisive move by its parent company, News International, to try and draw a line under the phone hacking scandal and to save the rest of News International's businesses, such as The Times and The Sun, from being tainted by their association with NOTW.  It was a sacrificial move by News International to protect ...

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  • LOCOG withdraws from trade mark race

    Last week the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games ("LOCOG") indicated that it intended to launch opposition proceedings in relation to an application for the trade mark "Great Exhibition 2012".  However, LOCOG has back-tracked and has now confirmed that it will take no further action against the trade mark application.  

    The Great Exhibitions Company, the organisation behind the trade mark application is planning a series of nationwide events celebrating British culture, concluding with a two week festival in London in August 2012, to be called the "Great Exhibition 2012".  

    LOCOG initially objected to the inclusion of "2012" ...

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  • Brand-i is watching you

    The Trading Standards Institute (the TSI) has co-founded an online shopping directory aimed at reducing the amount of people that are fooled into buying counterfeit goods online. The website, named Brand-i (operated through Brand Information Limited) is free to use and new brands will be added to the site to reflect the shopping trends of the online consumer. Examples of the type of brands that are currently involved include: UGG, GHD, Chanel, Pandora, Ted Baker as well as two Premier League football clubs.

    There has been a marked increase in the level of counterfeit goods available online in the last few years, but ...

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  • High Court finds Formula for Confusion in Naming Dispute

    Last week, the High Court granted its decision in the Formula One 'Lotus' naming rights case. 

     

    This decision concerns the long-running battle between the Formula One racing team 'Team Lotus' and the sponsor of the Renault Formula One racing team, 'Group Lotus'.  The two companies have both laid claim to the 'Lotus' name in combination with the word 'team' within Formula One. 

     

    The Court held that Team Lotus were the owners of the goodwill in the 'Team Lotus' name and therefore had the right to use the name 'Team Lotus' in Formula One and can continue to use ...

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