“D’oh!” The Simpsons are sued for Homer’s hologram

You may be familiar with Comic-Con, a worldwide organization that runs conventions for comic fans, made famous by geeks in dress up and legendary guest stars. Well, last month’s San Diego Comic-Con was made famous for another reason – a holographic appearance by Homer Simpson has led to The Simpsons being sued for patent infringement. D’oh indeed. On 26 July …

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8 things you need to do now that Facebook has banned “like-gating”

“Like our page!” is a phrase you see a lot on Facebook.  But following a change to Facebook’s Platform Policy last week, you may not see it as much.  Great news for users, but maybe not-so-great news for those businesses relying on like-gates to gain traction on Facebook.  Here are 8 things that all businesses on Facebook will want to think about now …

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Can Sports Data protect its Sports Data? The Federal Court refuses interlocutory relief to protect input criteria for sports statistics

Sports statistics – watching sport just wouldn’t be the same without them these days. What percentage of second serves did Federer make to the backhand? What percent of penalties did Messi take to the left side of the goal? What is the average number of offloads from Paul Gallen per game? These statistics are useful of course, not just to …

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Milk-crate-gate, or, is there really no such thing as an original idea?

It’s not often that a milk crate makes national news headlines, but social media is now abuzz over claims of possible copyright infringement involving this ordinarily innocuous object. Australian artist Jarrad Kennedy has raised a cyber-eyebrow over the similarities between his 2005 McLelland Sculpture Prize entry and Hany Armanious’ Pavillion, a 13.7 metre high piece of public art soon to …

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ATMOsphere – Trade Marks Office Decisions – July 2014

In January this year, we started a new series of posts from IP Whiteboard: ATMOsphere, aiming to keep our readers up-to-date on what has been happening in the world of Trade Marks Office decisions (see the January ATMOsphere post here and our March 2014 post here). As explained there, our aim is both to provide a very high level summary …

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Lies, damned lies and social media coverage of trade mark disputes – the TV programme previously known as “Glee”?

Remember when you could rely on social media for fair, unbiased and objective coverage of the news? Me neither. The facts did not get in the way of a good story when a virtual Twitter-storm erupted over the weekend around the tv show GLEE having to change its name in the UK. But is this a foregone conclusion? No. It …

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Telco and database services, comparison sites, and shopping centres – courts increasingly taking a modern view on trade mark specifications, but will the registries follow their lead?

Brand protection is not always as straightforward as it should be. For one thing, even once you have chosen your brand, you need to draft a specification that covers what you do and/or propose to do. This is a simple exercise if you are a t-shirt company, but can be a tricky business for service providers in evolving (and even …

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Review of the Innovation Patent System Final Report

The Australian Government Advisory Council on Intellectual Property (“ACIP”) has recently recommended several changes to the innovation patent system in Australia. The key recommendations include raising the threshold for “innovative step”; excluding processes from patentability as innovation patents; examination and certification being a precondition to using the term “patent”; and requiring examination to be requested within three years. ACIP was …

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