SpicyIP Weekly Review (24th – 30th April, 2016)


SpicyIP Highlight of the Week

Our SpicyIP Highlight was definitely Prateek Surisetti’s two-part post submission for the 2016-17 Fellowship. In the first part, he chronicles the issues associated with permitting companies to trademark colours having extensive uses in the light of the 2013 Nestle v. Cadbury judgement. He then looks into the basis of the Sieckmann Criteria and explores the ‘ideal threshold’ pertaining to the clarity and precision required of applications seeking registration of color marks.
In the second part, Prateek comprehensively reviews the concerns associated with trademarking colours in general. He writes that colours are in some cases capable of fulfilling the role of trademarks, but also considers certain arguments that justify caution in this regard. He finally observes that although Indian courts tread gingerly when it comes to the question of trademarking colours, they tend to restrict themselves to only considering whether the colour mark fulfills the role of a trademark, without taking into account other conflicting reasons for rejecting the mark.

In our first post for the week, Balu Nair, another of our Fellowship applicants, profiles the recipient of the National Intellectual Property Award, 2016,Ganesh Hingmire and his phenomenal contributions to the field of Geographical Indications.

Next, we had Rahul Bajaj, who in the light of the Stairway to Heaven copyright infringement case, explores the question as to whether in the musical industry, where a few musical notes “suit the infantile demands of the popular ear”, any attempt to draw inspiration from previous works amounts to plagiarism irrespective of the differences in their contextual significance.

This was followed by Rajiv’s post where he scrutinized the Delhi HC’s April 22nd order in the Xiaomi-Ericsson matter where it partly conceded to Xiaomi’s assertion that Ericsson had deliberately concealed information relating to two of its 3G patents. It accordingly vacated the first order to the extent that it pertained to the two patents. Rajiv concludes by noting that the case brings to the fore the issue of injunctions becoming the norm in patent matters, and the need for owners to by and large prove infringement on a claim by claim basis for each patent, and in such course, batlte their way through tests pertaining to validity and enforceability.

Then, Gopika put together an account of a rather unfortunate instance of an IP lawyer plagiarizing the work of another IP lawyer. In this case, Ms. Leila Amineddoleh, partner, co-founder and IP specialist at Galluzzo & Amineddoleh LLP had the displeasure of discovering that portions of her paper entitled ‘Purchasing Art in a market full of forgeries: Risks and Remedies for buyers’ had been lifted and used by a copyright lawyer in an article that the latter claimed to have written for the Tehelka, entitled ‘The Rise of Fakes and False Attribution in the Art World’. With this, Gopika sought to highlight once again the grim issue of academic plagiarism and the imminent need to adopt a no-tolerance policy towards it.


1.Louis Vuitton Sues Fried Chicken Restaurant for Trademark Infringement

2.Adidas Sues Ecco for infringement of three stripe trademark

3.Geoblocking is not copyright infringement: Productivity Commission

4.Linking to pirated content is not copyright infringement, says EU court adviser

5.Fitbit scores against Jawbone in patent infringement lawsuit

6.Paice Suing Volkswagen, Audi, Porsche Over Hybrid Patent Infringement

Kiran George

Kiran Mary George is a Third Year student at ILS Law College, Pune. Her first stint in the world of Intellectual Property law was an internship with a registered copyright society that granted her an insight into the world of copyright in music. Since then, her interest in IPR has taken strong hold, and she enjoys keeping close tabs on developments in the field. She is still discovering her interests, but so far takes a special liking to open access, copyright and trademarks.

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