Protecting and exploiting brands, design, innovation and creativity in Yorkshire and the Humber
Happy Yorkshire day!
To mark the day I should like to tell you about some of the things that have been happening in business, branding, design, technology and creative industries across Yorkshire and the Humber.
Bye-Bye Yorkshire Forward! Hello LEP!
Why we are interested in all of this
Our livelihood depends on helping businesses to secure and exploit their investment in branding, design, technology and new creative works. Like most other professional advisers and indeed many investors we relied on local Business Link advisers to introduce us to the entrepreneurs who need our help. Also, Yorkshire Forward and Business Link Yorkshire funded many of the services we supplied.
Now that the RDA and local Business Link services are going we have set up our own regional networks of professionals and have developed links with CDFI
and business angels
Equity investment usually requires due diligence, shareholders' agreements, assignments and licences of patents and other intellectual property rights, contracts of employment and advice on tax and pensions. I can do much of that work
and introduce colleagues from the Bar and other professions who can help with the rest.
TED stands for technology, entertainment and design. It is a forum for the exchange of ideas on those and other topics in 18 minute presentations at conferences in the USA and Europe. TEDx events are locally organized events using the TED format. I attended and reported the first TEDx event in Bradford at the Cubby Broccoli cinema in the National Media Museum - "TEDx Bradford - this is where we live."
TEDx Bradford was organized by Imran Ali. Imran has also brought us OpenCoffee Leeds, which usually meets on the first Tuesday of the month at the NTI at Old Broadcasting House, and Girl Geeks Dinner, which meets from time to time in Leeds.
Bmedia also holds OpenCoffee meetings in Barnsley and Bradford. If you want to know more about these events call me on 0800 862 0055
or use my contact form
How far can a trade mark derived from the white rose of Yorkshire distinguish your goods or services from those of your competitors? And in what circumstances does another Yorkshire business infringe your trade mark or pass his or her goods or services as yours if he or she also uses a sign based on the rose? These were the issues decided by Mr. Justice Arnold in Samuel Smith v Lee
. For answers to some of those questions see my blog post "Beer and Trade Marks - Samuel Smith v Lee".
If you have a question on trade mark registration, licensing or infringement or you require advice or representation before the Intellectual Property Office, OHIM (EU trade marks and designs office), Chancery Division, Patents County Court or some other tribunal, call me on 0800 862 0055
or use my contact form
Talking of roses, did you know that new plant varieties can be protected in the UK and also in the EU? They can be registered at the Plant Variety and Seeds office in England under the Plant Varieties Act 1997 or at the Community Plant Variety Office in France under Regulation 2100/04. I discussed plant protection in a reference to the Huddersfield Choral Society Rose while reviewing their Spring concert. You can learn some law as well as something about the concert in "The Huddersfield Choral Society Rose."
This picture of the daffodils at Farndale has nothing to do with plant protection or even intellectual property but it has everything to do with our beautiful county.
If you have a question about protecting plant varieties
or require advice or representation in a plant breeders'' case in the Patents or Patents County Court or before some other tribunal call me on 0800 862 0055
or use my contact form
A case from this county that shows the limits of unregistered design right protection is Albert Packaging v Nampak.
His Honour Judge Birss QC held that design right subsisted in the claimant's design and that it was probably one of the sources of ideas for the defendant. Yet it did not infringe. Why was that? For the answer, see my article "Design Rights: Albert Packaging v Nampak Packaging & Healthcare".
Design was the theme of this year''s World Intellectual Property Day. This is an international event to celebrate the formation of the World Intellectual Property Organization - the UN specialist agency for intellectual property - on 26 April 1974. Normally the UK keeps a low profile in these celebrations but not this year and not in Yorkshire. Leeds and Sheffield central libraries held a special exhibition and we ran morning and afternoon seminars in Leeds and Bradford which were picked up on the WIPO website and Facebook page. Here is our report
on the day.
Finally, the Digital Consortium, one of our longstanding friends in the Yorkshire design community threw a party. Lots of luscious dresses and even more luscious cakes. I blogged about it all in "Cascading Cakes and Style Sheets".
I do a lot of work for inventors. I run the NIPC Inventors Club
and keep its blog
. I also chair the Leeds and Sheffield Inventors Groups. Here are some recent presentations:
The Sheffield group meets at Sheffield Central Library on the first Monday of the month and the Leeds group at Leeds Central Library on the third Wednesday, I have mentioned them in "Inventors'' Resources in Yorkshire and the Humber" here.
A question that every inventor should consider is whether he or she needs a patent at all. Inventors, their backers and professional advisers may like to read my article "Do you need to patent your invention?"
Often they spend lots of money of patents that are never worked. Here is the "Inventor''s Bargain"
with the public.
Often a good confidentiality agreement is all you need. You certainly need a form like this if you have not yet applied for a patent for your invention. If you have any issue over patenting, collaboration, licensing or infringement call me on 0899 862 0055 or use my contact form,
Creative Networks meet at Leeds Art College on the last Tuesday of every month.
If you have found this newsletter useful I should appreciate your bearing us in mind next time you need advice on business transactions
or dispute resolution
in litigation, arbitration, mediation or negotiation. Here are the ways you can instruct us
and here is some information about our fees.
We look forward to hearing from you,
With best wishes,