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trade mark

Word or logo? Choosing the perfect trade mark application

In these strange times we’re used to big questions and the controversy that accompany them, lift lockdown or don’t lift lockdown? 1 meter or 2? Mask or no mask? Stand outside the newly opened pub or go inside? You know, big stuff. But the biggest question in the mind of a potential trade mark applicant is whether to file a word mark or a logo. Now of course it’s worth nothing from the outset that…
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shareholders agreement

Importance of a shareholders agreement

We all find ourselves trying to embrace this new normal during this pandemic and for some, this break has allowed your business plans to come to fruition. Due to the speed that businesses move at one of the last considerations on your list as both part of your business plan and commercial spending may be ensuring that you have a shareholders agreement in place, however this document could save you both time, money and stress…
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Feta

No such thing as ‘Icelandic feta’

In April Greek MP Emmanouil Fragkos filed a complaint with the European Parliament regarding the Islandic company MS Iceland Dairies producing and selling ‘feta’ cheese products. ‘Feta’ is a protected designation of origin held by Greece, which means that only Greece, and not any other country, can brand its cheese as ‘feta’ if it conforms with certain rules of production. Protected designation of origin is a name of a region, place or country used to…
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beer and chocolate

Beers, IP and chocolate

Three of my favourite things, although when they come together the results can mixed as S43 Brewery recently found out. The tale begins at the S43 Brewery where a rather tasty sounding peanut butter and fudge stout was being brewed. The stout in question was named “You’re Not You When You’re Thirsty”, a play on the classic Snicker’s “You’re not you when you’re hungry” campaign. By all reports S43’s You’re Not You When You’re Thirsty…
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spider-man

Spider Man PS5 game caught in the web of YouTube copyright disputes

Sony’s recent announcement that its long-awaited PS5 games console would be launched before the end of the year has been met with much excitement – enhanced by the very real possibility that staying will indeed become the new going out. One of the titles fans are particularly looking forward to is the latest instalment in the Spider Man franchise: Spider Man: Miles Morales. In fact, such was the buzz that the title’s announcement created, that…
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communications

Case Study: Trade Mark Specs and Bad Faith

I wanted to review the case of Sky Plc & Ors v SkyKick UK Ltd & Anr and considering the findings of the case. From this case is an EU trade mark invalid on the basis of an overly broad specification of goods/services? The background Sky Plc (Sky), the large media and telecommunications company, brought trade mark infringement and passing off claims against SkyKick UK Limited (SkyKick), a business that provides software solutions to SMEs.…
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Black Lives Matter

Attempt to Register ‘Black Lives Matter’ and ‘I Can’t Breathe’ as trade marks should fail

It was inevitable really. In the midst of a tragedy and subsequent worldwide public outcry for an end to prejudice, inequality and injustice, someone has sought to benefit commercially from the situation. Stand up Mr Georgious Demitriou who through his company Licensed to Thrill has applied to register the trade marks Black Lives Matter and I Can’t Breathe. Filed on 6 June, the Black Lives Matter application seeks to secure rights in the mark for…
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symphony

Classic Copyright Cases – Bitter Sweet Symphony

Bitter Sweet Symphony needs no introduction. It is an undisputed classic from The Verve with an equally memorable music video. The song, written by Richard Ashcroft and released back in 1997, sampled a symphonic version of The Last Time by The Rolling Stones, recorded by the Andrew Oldham Orchestra in 1965. The Verve had originally agreed to sample a five-note segment of the recording in exchange for an even split of the royalties, however that…
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cease

Help, I’ve just received a cease and desist letter!

As intellectual property lawyers we spend much of our time either sending or responding to “cease and desist” letters. These letters are the first step in an IP claim and are essentially designed to set out the rights of the aggrieved party along with the various “remedies” which they are seeking to obtain. Typically the scenario is as follows, Party A owns some IP, such as a trade mark, a design, a patent or a…
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ice

Classic Copyright Cases – Ice Ice Baby

It is that time again, another Classic Copyright Caseä from yours truly. I hope you are all keeping well and enjoying the gradual descent into insanity which I am sure has been these past two months. At least the lockdown is gradually being relaxed so sit tight and enjoy these charming blogs in the meantime. This week I am going to talk about a song we have all heard – Vanilla Ice’s seminal 1990 track…
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About Briffa

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We help clients across a broad range of sectors and we’re experts in brand strategy and IP portfolio management — our team can help your business grow, giving you a competitive edge that increases the value of your business for either investment or eventual sale.

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