International Property Rights Newsletter – August 13, 2015, N.33

Section: Members Highlights / Taxpayer Leaders Forum / WTA Blog
14 August 2015 | Property Rights Alliance / USA

International Property Rights Newsletter – August 13, 2015, N.33

Follow us on Facebook and Twitter!

Please check the 2014 International Property Rights Index


On July 20th, Property Rights Alliance, in partnership with 84 think tanks and advocacy groups, officially launched the International Guidelines on Intellectual Property Rights. The open letter was addressed to Dr. Francis Gurry, Director General of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). To read the letter, please click here.


North America

Do Venture Capitalists Care About Intellectual Property?

There has been much debate around intellectual property (IP): When do I get a patent? Do I need a trademark? Should I bother with copyrights? Do venture capital (VC) firms care about IP? Does anyone else really care about innovation or IP protection? The answer is “yes” to all of the above. Continue Reading


Two Canadians sentenced to prison for distributing fake and adulterated Botox to eastern Missouri

Two Canadians were sentenced to prison Tuesday for distributing counterfeit, misbranded and adulterated Botox to two St. Louis County doctors and others, federal prosecutors said. Kamaldeep Sandhu and Navdeep Sandhu, of Vancouver, B.C., obtained Botox from Turkey and then shipped it to doctors in Missouri and elsewhere via the website for hundreds less than FDA-approved drugs would cost, their indictment says. Over 100 shipments went to eastern Missouri, the indictment says. Continue Reading


‘Troll’ tops US list of litigious copyright companies

The music industry has accounted for the most ‘traditional’ US copyright cases filed over the past six years, but online video company Malibu Media topped the list of most litigious plaintiffs, a report has showed. Malibu Media, which runs an erotic website, has filed 4,332 cases….Continue Reading


New Report Makes Recommendations to Strengthen China’s IP Environment and Encourage Innovation 

A new report released this week by a joint United States-China working group outlined solutions to some of the most complex and challenging IP issues facing China. The report is the second released by the U.S.-China IP Cooperation Dialogue, a collaboration between the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Renmin University’s China Intellectual Property Academy. Continue Reading


Patent Office Preps to Overhaul Patent Filing Process

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office wants to make your experience filing patents as simple as possible. Later this summer, the office will begin to work on one of its newest initiatives, eCommerce Modernization, or eMod, which aims to upgrade the electronic patent application process by modernizing both the filing and viewing systems, according to a notice on its website. Continue Reading

US Patent Disputes Are Set To Reach A Record High: Who Gets Sued The Most? [Infographics]

This year, the United States is set to see more patent disputes than ever before. According to a report by UnifiedPatents, there were 3,499 patent litigation cases in 2011 and this is projected to hit at least 6,100 in 2015 – the highest number in US history. Continue Reading


Movie, Web Sectors Braced for Court Ruling on Digital Transfers

A U.S. appeals court struggled over the rules to block electronic transmissions that violate U.S. property rights in a case that’s split the movie and Internet industries. “Isn’t it telling that Congress is grappling with how to deal with digital transmissions?” Circuit Judge Kathleen O’Malley asked Tuesday in a case involving a patent dispute over invisible braces and the role of the U.S. International Trade Commission to monitor digital data. Continue Reading


Taylor Swift Not Immune from Deposition, Says Opposing Counsel

An attorney representing the clothing company locked in the ‘Lucky 13’ trademark tussle with Taylor Swift has said he is trying to set a date for the singer’s deposition, adding that “celebrity is not a synonym for immunity”. Continue Reading


Youtubers in Uproar After Popular Channel Targeted with Copyright Claims Over Critical Video

YouTube personalities have reacted angrily to an aggressive series of copyright claims made by the Fullscreen network against H3H3 productions, a popular comedy channel that mocked one of the network’s partner channels. As well as disabling H3H3’s most popular video with copyright complaints, Fullscreen allegedly threatened to “destroy” their channel if they do not co-operate. Continue Reading


‘Goodfellas’ Actor’s $250m ‘Simpsons’ Image Rights Claim Shot Down

A US court has shot down an image rights lawsuit brought by actor Frank Sivero after ruling that the producers of television show “The Simpsons” can rely on First Amendment rights to help defeat his claim. In a decision handed down yesterday, August 6, the Los Angeles Superior Court dismissed Sivero’s claim that Fox Television Studios misappropriated his image rights. Continue Reading



Argentina Sanctioned for Failing to Turn Over Asset Evidence

All Argentine government assets in the U.S., other than diplomatic and military holdings, will be treated as commercial property, a judge said, opening the door for hedge fund NML Capital and other creditors to seek to seize it. U.S. District Judge Thomas Griesa on Wednesday agreed with NML that the South American nation should be punished for failing to turn over evidence that the fund wants to use to discover assets. Continue Reading


799 Violations Put a Knife into Venezuelan Property Rights

Venezuela’s Chavista regime is expropriating en masse, and is even dislodging one of the nation’s most precious resources: food distribution centers. The latest confiscation, announced on July 30, goes after the nation’s chief food and beverage suppliers — Alimentos Polar, PepsiCo, and Nestle — to make way for more state housing in the lead-up to this year’s legislative elections. Continue Reading


Europe/Eastern Europe iTunes’ features ‘illegal’ in UK after High Court ruling iTunes is technically breaking the law. A recent ruling by the High Court states it is now illegal to transfer copyrighted works from one format to another. This means if you download an MP3 and then burn it onto a CD to listen to in your car, you are technically breaking the law. Even storing your music on a cloud storage service could technically be a breach of the new legislation. Continue Reading


Linee Guida per il diritto della Proprietà Intellettuale (article in Italian)

«Le società avanzate hanno da tempo capito che attraverso la tutela dei diritti della proprietà di artisti, autori, imprenditori, innovatori e inventori di ogni genere, promuovono una maggiore possibilità di benessere comune; la continua protezione di questi diritti fondamentali è essenziale non solo per lo sviluppo della creatività, ma anche per la competitività e l’innovazione globale».

Continue Reading


Have Greek and Turkish Cypriots become more mature?

Kudret Özersay is a former Turkish Cypriot negotiator. He held the title of chief negotiator until last October when he was removed from duty after he announced he would run as a candidate in April’s presidential elections. Özersay, who had been involved in the negotiations since 2003, was replaced by Özdil Nami after Mustafa Akıncı won in the April elections. Continue Reading


Adidas, Sisi-Werke Pouch, Airbus: Intellectual Property

Adidas AG sued Sears Holdings Corp. and its Sears Roebuck unit for infringement involving the German sneaker company’s three-stripe trademarks. According to a complaint filed in federal court in Portland, Oregon, athletic shoes and some hiking boots sold by Sears infringe the marks by placing two, three or four parallel stripes on the mid-foot portion of the shoes’ uppers. Continue Reading


Jessie J Fails to Swat ‘Price Tag’ Copyright Case

Musician Jessie J has failed to dismiss a copyright claim filed against her and a producer that centered on her hit song “Price Tag”. On Friday, August 7, Judge Ronnie Abrams at the US District Court for the Southern District of New York threw out a motion for a summary judgment that had been filed by Jessie J and the song’s producer Lukasz Gottwald, who goes by the name ‘Dr Luke’. Continue Reading


Reports of return of land to Greek Cypriots overshadow Cyprus peace talks

UN Special Adviser on Cyprus Espen Barth Eide, who is acting as a mediator in the peace talks between Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots over the unification of the ethnically divided island, told reporters recently that both sides had agreed that individual property rights prior to the island’s division will be respected, following a meeting between Turkish Cypriot President Mustafa Akinci and Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades on Thursday. Continue Reading


Don’t call it a Hobbit house! Tolkien lawyers threaten couple over campsite advert

The Tolkien estate are threatening a couple with legal action over their plans to offer a luxury glamping experience in a ‘poddit hole’ in ‘Centre Earth’. Jan and Ed Lengyel have been warned they could be in breach of copyright and trademarks for even using words which rhyme with hobbit. Continue Reading


Re-think the development of the SDSR, says the Bow Group, and produce a defence and security review that is fit for purpose

The Bow Group, the UK’s oldest conservative supporting think-tank, today calls on the Government to re-think the way in which the 2015 Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR) is to be developed, in favour of an extended review that takes full consideration of the range of inputs needed to provide the strategic direction that our armed forces and security services need at a time of increasing instability. Continue Reading



Directorate General of Intellectual Property Rights (Pakistan Customs) established

While customs officers have the authority to detain or seize counterfeit goods under the Customs Act 1969 – the primary legislation in Pakistan relating to customs – such authority has not been fully enforced due to the absence of stringent legislative procedures. However, the Federal Board of Revenue – a semi-autonomous, supreme federal agency responsible for auditing, enforcing and collecting revenue for the government – has recently taken bold initiatives to curb the trade of counterfeit and smuggled goods. Continue Reading


Rise of the clones: Chinese knockoffs undercut Russian arms exports

Defence exports to China provide Russia with a bunch of strategic benefits. Besides bringing in bucket loads of quick cash, Russian weapons generate a strategic spinoff by counterbalancing US military power in Asia. Beijing’s insatiable appetite for advanced weaponry keeps the Russian defence industry ticking along nicely and forces the Americans to divert substantial offensive and defensive resources to check China. This reduces pressure on Russia’s European flanks. Continue Reading


Asia/Southeast Asia The Right To Property In India

Indians still consider their property rights sacrosanct, even if it is not guaranteed as a fundamental right….Taken in context of India in 2015, the State, its officials and industrialists fall in the category of the first speaker. They are the “development oriented” set. In the second category fall the farmer/landowner; sentimental sons of the soil. Just last week the second category—landowners and farmers—won a small victory. They compelled the BJP to take back its December 2014 changes to the land bill. Continue Reading


Kerry Talks Trade in Singapore Before Regional Security Meet

Kerry arrived in the Southeast Asian city-state Tuesday and is to give a speech highlighting the benefits of the so-called “Trans-Pacific Partnership.” He will then travel to Malaysia for a regional security forum at which China’s growing assertiveness in the South China Sea will likely be a major focus. Continue Reading


World Intellectual Property Organization presents ‘WIPO Award for Creative Excellence’ to HRH Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn

General Chatchai Sarikulya, Minister of Commerce, announced at a press conference held today at the Ministry of Commerce that Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn will grant an audience to Mr. Francis Gurry, the Director-General of WIPO for the presentation of the ‘WIPO Award for Creative Excellence’ on the 27th of August 2015. The nation and its people take great pride in this award. Coincidentally, this year Thailand also celebrates the auspicious occasion of Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn’s fifth cycle birthday. Continue Reading


U.S. businesses lobby Obama on China tech protectionism concerns

American business groups are lobbying U.S. President Barack Obama to press Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping on technology protectionism concerns during Xi’s upcoming U.S. visit, according to a letter addressed to Obama seen by Reuters. In the letter dated Aug. 11, 19 U.S. business lobbies including the American Chamber of Commerce in China and U.S. Chamber of Commerce….Continue Reading


Resume TPP talks soon or risk drifting off course, says Yomiuri Shimbun

The ministerial meeting of the countries negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) framework ended on Friday (July 31, 2015) without reaching a broad agreement. In a joint statement, the 12 participating countries emphasised that “we are more confident than ever that TPP is within reach,” indicating that they would continue the negotiations. Continue Reading


Asean’s fight for intellectual property rights

Patents, trademarks, copyrights – these are some the words used to describe an intangible form of branding culminated from the imaginative minds of people. Enter the world of intellectual property, whereby one values an idea, brand or concept as a method of selling their goods and services. IP is growingly recognised as a key driver of economic growth in a knowledge-based economy. Intangible assets, of which IP is a major component, has become a significant contributor to the value of companies worldwide. Continue Reading


China withdraws 2.2 million non-copyrighted songs from the internet

China withdrew 2.2 million non-copyrighted songs from the internet in July, the first month of its anti-piracy campaign, the National Copyright Administration, or NCA told Xinhua news agency. While it is not known if any company has been sanctioned for offering non-copyrighted music, the agency responsible for protecting intellectual property in China stressed they cooperated with the campaign. Continue Reading


Plea against special rights to Kashmiris puts Centre, Jammu and Kashmir govt in a fix

A petition in the Supreme Court challenging Article 35A of the Constitution, which grants special status to permanent residents of Jammu and Kashmir, has put the Centre and J&K government in a fix. It is this provision and not Article 370 that prevents rest of Indian citizens from acquiring immovable property and exercising voting rights in Jammu and Kashmir. Continue Reading


China has knocked off a Range Rover and is selling it at a third of the price of the real thing

The Range Rover Evoque is a major cog in Jaguar Land Rover’s expansion into China. Last week, a speed bump in JLR’s China plan appeared in showrooms in the form of the Landwind X7. This is because — aesthetically — the X7 is a virtually indistinguishable from the Evoque. Continue Reading


India’s Intellectual Property Spend Up by 57 Percentage in 4 Years

A 6.9 billion dollars was the cost Indian companies had to dish out as intellectual property (IP) royalty in the year 2013. This steep figure accounted for almost 18 per cent of the nations’ Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) that year, said former Supreme Court judge, Justice AR Lakshmanan. The IP royalty cost grew by more than two billion dollars in a matter of three years from 2009. As technology requiring large number of patents and trademark sprout everyday, the expenditure towards intellectual property has also skyrocketed. Continue Reading


Protecting IPR in China

To remain competitive in the Chinese market, foreign oil and gas enterprises must protect their intellectual property rights in China, explain Brad Chin and Kevin Tamm of Bracewell & Giuliani LLP. With China’s focus on developing a national plan to promote economic and technological development through the protection and enforcement of intellectual property (IP) rights (IPR), non-Chinese enterprises must understand the available forms of IP protection in the country. Continue Reading


Middle East/Africa

Gov’t to improve knowledge on Intellectual Property – Ayine

Deputy Minister of Justice, Dr Dominic Ayine, has said that government would improve and adapt Intellectual Property (IP) laws and protection systems to reduce the knowledge gap of users and policy makers for greater participation. Continue Reading


Algeria Becomes 95th Signatory to Madrid Protocol

Algeria has become the 95th country to join the Madrid Protocol, 43 years after acceding to the Madrid Agreement. The country deposited its instrument of accession on July 31 alongside Francis Gurry, director general of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO). Continue Reading


Zimbabwe: Intellectual Property Policy Coming Soon

In December 2014, a draft National intellectual Property Policy for Zimbabwe produced by the Inter-Ministerial Committee on Intellectual Property was distributed and reviewed at a three-day meeting held in Harare. The meeting was attended by representatives of stakeholder organisations in the culture and creative industries, government departments , the World Intellectual Property Organisation and the African Regional Intellectual Property Office. Continue Reading


Lesotho to host Botswana Intellectual Property Authority delegation

The One Stop Business Facilitation Centre (OBFC) established under Lesotho’s Ministry of Trade and Industry, will host a delegation of four people from Botswana Intellectual Property Authority, APA can report.Malempe Mokoma, an official from OBFC said the delegates will be in the country for two days starting from Monday next week and ending on Tuesday. Continue Reading



Australian Singer Wades in Over ‘Waltzing Matilda’ Trademark Row

Singer John Williamson has expressed outrage at an attempt by film company WM Productions to extend its trademark rights to the phrase ‘Waltzing Matilda’, the name of a popular Australian ballad. Williamson, known for albums such as “Mallee Boy” and “Mulga to Mangoes”, said that he would rather go to jail than pay someone to use the name. Continue Reading


Call to overhaul property compensation laws in NSW

If a council turns a resident’s house into apartments, or the state government builds a highway through it, they must pay the resident for their loss. But those who live next door confront a different story, and could have to fight even for inadequate compensation. One of Australia’s foremost experts on property rights argues that and more should change in an urgent review of the way all levels of government compensate homeowners who live near infrastructure projects. Continue Reading


Donald Bradman’s Family Raises Trademark Concerns

The family of late Australian cricket star Donald Bradman has reportedly expressed concerns about how his name and trademarks are being used by a foundation set up in his honour. According to Australian broadcaster ABC’s TV documentary series “Australian Story”, the family of the former cricketer is unhappy with some trademark use, which it said is “something we just can’t live with”. Continue Reading




Free-Trade and Property Rights

Trans-Pacific Partnership

Japan’s Amari: TPP Member Nations Clash Over Intellectual Property Issue

“I think that the negotiators will have to work through the night”, Japanese Economy Minister Akira Amari said. On Friday, the U.S. Trade Department delayed a scheduled news conference on the progress of negotiations from 7:30 p.m. ET until 10 p.m. ET. Continue Reading


Kerry Says TPP Deal can be Achieved This Year

Countries negotiating a vast free-trade pact will hopefully secure a deal by the end of this year, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said on Friday in Hanoi. Kerry said the 12 countries negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) — including the U.S., Japan and Vietnam — had made good “progress” during the last round of talks on the Hawaiian island of Maui last week. Continue Reading


Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership

Inside TTIP: An overview and chapter-by-chapter guide in plain English

TTIP matters. It offers huge potential to create jobs and growth and help set high standards for trade around the world. And it affects you. So getting the deal right means being as transparent and open as possible — and involving everyone with a stake. Continue Reading

Daniel Hamilton: It’s time for businesses to fight for TTIP, the biggest trade deal in history

Over recent months, the debate about the passage of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) has rapidly intensified. Originally conceived as a free trade deal designed to remove artificial barriers between the economies of the European Union and the United States, the debate has been plagued by misinformation and indecision – to the detriment of businesses and consumers. Continue Reading


“Hot Issue”

Australia faces $50m legal bill in cigarette plain packaging fight with Philip Morris

Australia’s legal bill for defending its cigarette plain packaging legislation is set to hit $50 million as it battles to contain a case brought by tobacco giant Philip Morris before a tribunal in Singapore. And that is just for the first stage. If in September the three-person extraterritorial tribunal decides Australia has a case to answer, the hearing will move on to substantive matters and the bills will become far bigger. Continue Reading

All Recipients are free to copy and redistribute the newsletter in any medium or format with proper attribution to Property Rights Alliance