Category Archives: Intellectual Property

When Have My Intellectual Property Rights Been Violated?

By | January 23, 2012

Intellectual property rights, for many people, don’t ring as true as tangible property rights. But those people don’t know just how influential and important intellectual property rights can be. Many famous entertainers make a lot of money simply because they own the rights to the artistic property they’ve created – in many cases, they make enough to live… Read More »

Responding to Office Actions Issued on Trademark Applications

By | August 31, 2011

An office action is a letter from the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) notifying the applicant of a problem with a trademark application.  In an office action, the U.S. government trademark examining attorney informs you, the applicant, of a specific problem with your application.  The problem could be anything from a technical error with your application… Read More »

The Beginner’s Guide to Intellectual Property Rights

By | August 17, 2011

The idea of “property” isn’t very tough to figure out. Many people apply this simple formula: if you paid for a house, that’s your property. If you bought a car, that’s your property. The issue does get a little more complicated when you realize you don’t just own property because you paid for it. Sometimes you can create… Read More »

Arbitration of Intellectual Property Disputes

By | June 17, 2011

The Supreme Court of New South Wales has added weight to the push towards alternative dispute resolution in a recent decision[1] that found that disputes involving questions of ownership of patents and patent applications do not fall exclusively within the province of the Commissioner of Patents or the Federal Court.

Is My Domain Name a Trademark and Should I File a Trademark Application to Protect It?

By | June 10, 2011

In deciding whether to file a trademark application to protect your domain name, the first step is to determine whether you use your domain name as a trademark.  If your domain name is only used as the Uniform Resource Locator (“URL”) (i.e., http://www.example.com) to indicate an address on the World Wide Web, then you are not using your… Read More »

The Bolar Provision – An Incentive for Investment and Innovation?

By | January 24, 2011

The Bolar Provision typically defines circumstances in which the proprietors of a patent are precluded from preventing third parties from performing acts which are otherwise protected by patent law. The Bolar provision originated in the United States, by virtue of the judgment Roche Products v Bolar Pharmaceuticals[1]. This judgement had limited the scope of the ‘experimental use exemption’… Read More »

Commercial Use Requirements for Filing a Trademark

By | January 21, 2011

An important requirement when filing your federal trademark is showing that you are “commercial using” the mark you want to register. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) requires proof of “use” so that people do not attempt to register marks to just “reserve” them. 1.  How to prove “use” of a trademark. If you are filing a… Read More »

Copyright Termination Right: A Powerful Right For Copyright Owners

By | November 19, 2010

Ever since I was a law student learning about copyright law, particularly, the provision that gives an author the right to terminate his or her transfer of copyright in a work (the “Copyright Termination Right”), I’ve wondered how the record and publishing companies were going to respond when an artist, songwriter, or composer actually attempted to recapture his… Read More »

Can I Use My Competitor’s Trademark as a Keyword for My Website Advertising?

By | September 28, 2010

So, you may have a website and you want to drive traffic – potential customers – to your site. One of the ways that you do that is by designating “keywords”. These are descriptive words that are associated with your website. When a potential customer enters words into a search engine, perhaps looking for a local florist by… Read More »

Trademark Registration and its Protection in Ethiopia

By | September 22, 2010

According to Ethiopian Trade Mark Protection Proclamation no. 501/2006 Trademark can be defined as any visible sign capable of distinguishing goods or services of one person from those of other persons, it includes words designs, letters, numerals, colors or the shape of goods or their packaging or the combination of thereof. Since Trademarks are directly associated with the… Read More »