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____/ Homer on Friday 19 Aug 2011 11:46 : \____
> Verily I say unto thee that Roy Schestowitz spake thusly:
>> ____/ bbgruff on Thursday 18 Aug 2011 17:23 : \____
>>> The reason I was asking was because I'm a bit puzzled by the Apple
>>> approach of applying for an injunction because something is "too
>>> similar" to their own product.
>>> This is very different from their approach in the U,S.
>>> Therefore, I assume that laws are somewhat different.
>> Yes, IANAL either, don't know how to answer that.
> AFAICT Apple's approach is the same wherever they go: racketeering.
> There's nothing new here, indeed Apple have been launching "looky-feely"
> litigation attacks since at least the 1980s:
> "Look and feel" is a bizarre form of "IP", unique to the US, called
> "trade dress", the purpose of which is essentially the extension of
> trademarks to physical objects, rather than names and symbols ("marks").
> Outside the US, the nearest equivalents are laws designed to address the
> fraud of "passing off", i.e. pretending to be another company, but
> wouldn't actually prohibit one selling functionally and aesthetically
> similar goods that were clearly branded differently. There may be other
> laws that would, but such cases must be considered separately and on
> their own merits. "IP" laws have "harmonised" in the US to the point
> where a single "product" may be covered by several forms of "IP" law at
> the same time, thus making competition virtually impossible.
> This report provides an overview of the current legal framework of Trade
> Dress in the EU, EU Member States, and elsewhere in Europe. Trade Dress
> is regarded as product design and packaging together with product
> configuration and shape. As a rule, relevant legislation does not
> provide a statutory definition of Trade Dress, and although definitions
> arise from case law these definitions vary from jurisdiction to
> jurisdiction. Another factor leading to dissimilar definitions is the
> applicability of various relevant laws such as Trademark Law, Unfair
> Competition Law, Copyright Law and Design Law. An essential question
> deriving from that is whether Trade Dress should be, or is sufficiently,
> protected under Trademark Law and whether additional explicit rules on
> Trade Dress protection should be introduced especially with regard to
> the possibility of harmonization on the European level.
> As of 2011, there is still no "trade dress" law in the EU.
> However, when Apple uses the term "look and feel" they may be referring
> to either trade dress or design patents, depending on the context (i.e.
> whichever works for them in any given legal jurisdiction). Apple can't
> file for trade dress infringement in the EU, since it has no such law,
> but they can file for community design patent infringement. Whether or
> not the patent for a "rounded rectangle" can actually be upheld, is
> another matter, especially given the vast volume of prior art.
> Personally I think Apple has overstepped the mark by trying to enforce
> US "IP" extremism in the EU, using an extremely weak pretext, and
> they're going to fail badly. We better hope so, because if they win
> it'll mark the end of all competition in both the US and EU, if
> something as simple as a "rounded rectangle" can be monopolised.
Don't forget that they faked their 'evidence', too. They should be sued/banned
for trying to ban rivals based on a lie.
~~ Best of wishes
Dr. Roy S. Schestowitz (Ph.D. Medical Biophysics), Imaging Researcher
http://Schestowitz.com | GNU/Linux administration | PGP-Key: 0x74572E8E
Editor @ http://techrights.org & Broadcaster @ http://bytesmedia.co.uk/
GPL-licensed 3-D Othello @ http://othellomaster.com
Non-profit search engine proposal @ http://iuron.com
Contact E-mail address (direct): s at schestowitz dot com
Contact Internet phone (SIP): schestowitz@xxxxxxxxx (24/7)
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