IP News March 2019

Welcome to IP News This Month, your monthly round-up of intellectual property developments, culled from news reports around the globe. Please send any comments toJeff—and tell your friends to subscribe here

Top 3 Stories

The Copyright Directive Cometh: European Parliament passes controversial proposalto create “link taxes” and “upload filters.” The directive, cheered by publishers and jeered by the tech industry, will take effect in two years

SCOTUS ruled 9-0 that copyright plaintiffs must wait until the Copyright Office has approved a registration before bringing an infringement action

Oh, the Copyright Places You’ll Boldly Go! Judge cites Annie Leibovitz case to rule a mash-up of Star Trek and Dr. Seuss is a highly transformative fair use


Ottawa’s plans for a national pharmacare plan appear to have stalled, frustrating provincial governments that are facing sky-high costs for patented “orphan disease” medications

Google’s recent praise of Canada’s AI achievements, many of which the company has commercialized, underscore how the country’s academic sector may be transferring valuable IP to foreign multinationals

Companies are ignoring recent changes to the Copyright Act intended to prevent abuse of Canada’s notice-and-notice provisions

United States

The dimwit daughter of a celebrity caught up in the U.S. college admissions scandal recently had a trademark application rejected on the grounds of poor punctuation

Bank of America has 82 patents and patent applications related to blockchain, but a senior executive admitted she is not sure if the technology will ever catch on

Apple-Qualcomm is the new Apple-Samsung as the two companies remain locked in a global patent death match

Rapper Cardi-B has filed to trademark the word” “Okurrr!”—described in the application as ”a proprietary pronunciation of the word ‘Okay’”—but some say the sound is already in wide use by other celebrities

Expanded IP protections for so-called biologic drugs—which Democrats call a hand-out to Big Pharma—remain a sticking point in the Trump Administration’s efforts to get a revised NAFTA deal through Congress

Peloton will pull hundreds of songs from its interactive workouts following a $150 million copyright suit that alleges the bougie bike company streamed unlicensed works by Drake, Lady Gaga and others


Reports say Germany agreed to support a hard line version of Article 13 in exchange for France backing controversial gas pipeline to Russia

Leaders of Poland’s controversial Law and Justice party hinted they will not fully implement the new EU Copyright Directive, saying the rules stifle free speech


In a potentially landmark automotive IP case, a Chinese court ruled against a firm that sold a knock off version of Jaguar’s Evoque model for a fraction of the price

China keeps touting recent copyright victories by the UK owners of Peppa the Pig as evidence it is taking foreign IP rights seriously 

The music industry in New Zealand is pointing to the EU Copyright Directive as a model for updating the country’s own copyright laws

An Australian law firm created a replica of “Fearless Girl” but has since agreed to stop displaying the statue at events after receiving copyright complaints from a U.S. investment bank

This content has been updated on May 3, 2019 at 16:35.