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As broad as it is long: CJEU rules that trade mark owners need not amend broad specifications

On 29 January 2020, brand owners across the EU were reassured in relation to the content of their trade mark specifications following the decision of the Court of Justice of the EU (CJEU) in Sky v SkyKick (C-371/18). The CJEU provided welcome confirmation that trade mark registrations with specifications comprising of broad terms such as … Continue Reading

Data Security Ignoring the PCI Data Security Standard Could Cost You!

Is compliance with payment card data security standards being ignored? The recent £500,000 fine, levied by the UK Information Commissioner on DSG, the owner of Currys PC World and Dixons Travel stores, highlights a worrying trend of non-compliance with payment card security standards. Our Security & Privacy Team has prepared a full blog post on … Continue Reading

Coronavirus and Contractual Penalties

We recently considered the issue that the Coronavirus outbreak may result in an upsurge of force majeure related claims under commercial contracts. A further risk now coming to light is customers seeking to enforce contractual fines, penalties, “service credits” or “liquidated damages” (collectively referred to for ease of reference as “Penalties” although all slightly different … Continue Reading

Coronavirus and Force Majeure

Usually found towards the end of a commercial contract, a force majeure provision seeks to exclude the liability of one or more parties for events beyond their reasonable control. Often (and mistakenly) overlooked as “standard boilerplate”, the increasingly apparent and potentially extensive impact of the Coronavirus outbreak on global supply chains is likely to bring … Continue Reading

A Win for Patent Inventors: 13 Year Battle Between Shanks and Unilever Draws to a Close

In a landmark decision delivered recently by the UK Supreme Court, Professor Shanks, an inventor, was awarded £2 million in compensation for a device he created. Professor Shanks developed the technology while he was employed by a Unilever company and the invention has proved lucrative for Unilever in many jurisdictions.  Background In the early 1980s, … Continue Reading

Not So Hot: Challenger Bank Fails in Attempts to Register “Hot Coral” Colour Mark

There are some colours that consumers associate with particular brands. For example, EasyJet is known for its distinctive orange livery, while Cadbury is known for the dark purple colour which it uses on the packaging of some of its chocolate bars and in its advertising. However, it is far from straightforward for brands to register … Continue Reading

Buy Now, Pay Later – New Compliance Rules Coming into Force

It was recently reported that Marks & Spencer is to offer a ‘buy now, pay later’ option on its website for online customers. The company  is modernising its services with the introduction of this payment scheme. Marks & Spencer joins the likes of ASOS and H&M in offering buy now, pay later (“BNPL“) services. How … Continue Reading

Lottery Tickets: It’s On The House?

Property firm Savills recently estimated that the UK housing market is at its weakest point since the global financial crisis of 2007/2008 and it is perhaps unsurprising, therefore, that in recent years sellers have increasingly resorted to listing their property in a lottery or raffle. However, running a property lottery whilst simultaneously staying compliant with … Continue Reading

How Harmful do Gender Stereotypes Need to be? Ads Banned in UK Following New Rule

As we reported earlier this year, a new rule dealing with the depiction of harmful gender stereotypes, was introduced into the BCAP and CAP Codes as of June 2019. The first decisions under the new rules have been released and we have seen two separate ads by Volkswagen and Philadelphia banned by the Advertising Standards … Continue Reading

Before The DST Settles: United Kingdom Pushes Ahead With Digital Services Tax

On Thursday 11 July 2019, the UK government confirmed that it will bring forward legislation for a new Digital Services Tax (DST) to take effect from April 2020. Squire Patton Boggs’ Tax team have prepared an alert, analysing the proposed legislation and assessing its possible impact and wider implications, which can be downloaded here. For more information, please contact Jeremy … Continue Reading

“It’s Unbelievable Jeff” – The ASA Overturn Sky Bet’s ‘Request a Bet’ Ad Ruling

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) recently announced that it has overturned its original ruling published on 13 March 2019 relating to a Sky Bet TV ad promoting their ‘Request a Bet’ service. As reported by Carlton Daniel in this blog and in Law360, the ASA had previously found that the advertisement contravened the advertiser’s duty … Continue Reading

But life isn’t fair….

Anyone who negotiates contracts for a living has their own personal war stories of dealing with other parties whose significant negotiating leverage meant they ended up accepting terms which in an ideal world they wouldn’t. But could having the upper hand and using that to extract the best possible deal come back to haunt you? … Continue Reading

You could be a celebrity without knowing it if you have 30,000 followers on social media

In a landmark decision, the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) in the UK recently ruled that, for the purposes of the CAP Code at least, a social media user may be considered a celebrity where they have 30,000 followers or more. In this case, the ASA found that an influencer breached the CAP Code when she … Continue Reading

Hungry for change: ASA and Government target junk food ads

With childhood obesity rates in the UK among some of the worst in Europe, the Government has set a national target to halve childhood obesity by 2030. Whilst the Government acknowledges that this is a multi-faceted problem, it has reported that evidence suggests that children’s exposure to advertising of products that are high in fat, … Continue Reading

Digital Copyright Directive published…and already the subject of complaint

The Directive on Copyright in the Digital Single Market (the Directive), has now been published in the Official Journal, and entered into force on Friday 7 June 2019. EU member states have two years in which to transpose the Directive (which is now officially Directive (EU) 2019/790 on copyright and related rights in the Digital … Continue Reading

ATB Sales Limited v Rich Energy: A ‘Staggering’ Use of Court time?

The recent judgment in ATB Sales Limited v Rich Energy Limited [2019] EWHC 1207 (IPEC) illustrates the difficulties parties will have in defending copyright infringement claims over artistic works, if they can only provide limited documentary proof of the creative design process. Background ATB Sales Limited (“Claimant”) brought the action against three Defendants: Rich Energy … Continue Reading

Check In On Your Terms

  The Competition & Markets Authority (CMA) has recently launched its “Small Print, Big Difference” campaign which encourages travel businesses to be upfront and clear with consumer customers. Although the campaign has been launched with a holiday and travel focus (following the CMA’s investigation into online hotel booking websites), and is supported by ABTA, many … Continue Reading

The future is…female sports sponsorship

With womens’ sporting events becoming increasingly popular with tv and live action crowds, brands searching for new sports sponsorship opportunities are turning to womens’ sports. Squire Patton Boggs’ Sports Shorts blog considered the advantages of such deals for brands in a recent post, which also looks at some high value sponsorships in the area.  … Continue Reading

Squire Patton Boggs Celebrates World Intellectual Property Day

The theme for this year is “Reach for Gold: IP and Sports.” Accordingly, the Global Intellectual Property & Technology Blog would like to acknowledge the contributions of all innovators and creators involved in sports, as well as the commitment of the professionals who help secure and enforce their intellectual property and resolve intellectual property issues. … Continue Reading

Employment Adverts – making sure you have the right tools for the job

Advertising agencies aren’t often employed to create interesting concepts for job adverts and it is easy to forget that, just like any other advertisement, job ads must abide by the rules of the CAP Code (the Code). In fact, there is a whole section of the Code dedicated to marketing communications for employment, business opportunities … Continue Reading

Scripts and Copyright: Application ‘Pitched’ Out of Court

Seeking an interim injunction to protect against copyright infringement can often run into difficulties, as demonstrated by the recent judgment in Happy Camper Productions Ltd v British Broadcasting Corporation [2019] EWHC 558 (Ch). The dispute centred on the script for an episode of ‘Pitching in’, a comedy-drama programme by the BBC about a widower in … Continue Reading

European Parliament Adopts the Copyright Directive

Despite the consistent and continuous opposition to the controversial Article 13, the European Parliament has adopted the ‘Directive on copyright in the Digital Single Market’ (the Directive). MEPs debated and subsequently voted in favour of the Directive, 348 votes to 274 (36 MEPs abstained). The Final Wording of the Directive The latest version of the … Continue Reading
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