Region: Australia

Anti-ambush marketing legislation – does it work?

The Australian government recently released a report on the effectiveness of specific legislation enacted to enhance protection against ambush marketing associated with the staging of the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne in 2006 and in relation to Australia's ongoing participation in the International Olympic Committee.

25 February 2009

Is the presence of overseas trademarks on the shelves enough to constitute use?

A recent Federal Court decision that a small number of sales of a particular wine did not constitute adequate use came as a shock to many international trademark owners and has led them to question whether the use of their trademarks in Australia would be sufficient to overcome a potential non-use action.

21 January 2009

Innovative inventions? Obviously!

Australian law provides for a two-tiered patent system: the standard patent and the innovation patent. Innovation patents not only are useful to protect those incremental inventions that cannot be protected under the standard system, but can also be wielded as a powerful tool by the patentee when faced with an allegedly infringing product of a competitor.

17 December 2008

How to cut the budget without losing the intellectual asset farm

In these times of financial uncertainty, many enterprises are obliged to review costs, minimise expenditure (at least in the short term) and try as best they can to preserve the strategic assets of the business for better times. Intellectual assets are not immune from these demands.

19 November 2008

High Court considers contributory infringement provisions of Patents Act 1990 for the first time

The recent decision of the High Court of Australia in <i>Northern Territory of Australia v Collins</i> provides guidance as to the meaning of the contributory infringement provisions under Section 117 of the Patents Act 1990 in patent infringement proceedings. Through the decision, a controversial issue of Australian patent law has been laid to rest.

05 November 2008

Implementing the Cutler Review recommendations in the current economic climate

The recently published Cutler Review made many recommendations regarding the Australian innovation economy, including that IP policy making should form part of the general economic policy-making process. However, as the government has just allocated A$10 billion to “pump prime” the national economy, it is unclear whether the Cutler recommendations will be taken forward.

22 October 2008

Impact of showing at trade exhibitions on design novelty

It is not unusual for companies to display new developments at trade shows and exhibitions as early as possible in order to showcase their latest products and technology. However, unless such exposure is planned to fit in with a formal IP protection strategy, it can raise questions over whether the product remains novel for the purposes of patent or design protection.

01 October 2008

Climate change: opportunities and challenges for patent owners

Although there is often talk of the challenge posed by climate change, it also presents an opportunity. One key indicator of the amount spent on research and development in the area of wind energy over the past decade is the number of patent applications filed – and these have increased significantly in recent years.

17 September 2008

Harmonisation: are we one step closer?

The Australian Patent Office (IP Australia) and the US Patent and Trademarks Office (USPTO) have reached an agreement whereby IP Australia will act as an international search and examination authority for international patent applications filed with the USPTO via the Patent Cooperation Treaty.

13 August 2008

Patentable subject matter under review

The Advisory Council on Intellectual Property is conducting a review of patentable subject matter in Australia. The most fundamental threshold for granting a patent involves the basic question of whether an innovation relates to the kind of thing for which patent protection should be granted in view of the policy objectives of the patent system.

30 July 2008

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