Trademarks and Brands

Renaming Projects: Swaziland Changes Its Name

by T+B BLOG TEAM on Monday, 9 July, 2018

Renaming a brand, a product, or a company is a huge, complex project. Have you ever thought about what happens when a country undergoes a name change?

The African nation of Swaziland is doing just that. It was announced in April that Swaziland was changing its name to "eSwatini," which means "home of the Swazi people." The new name eSwatini isn't completely "new" — a lot of the residents already use it locally — but the renaming announcement made by the country's King Mswati III on his 50th birthday, during the country's celebrations marking 50 years of independence from Great Britain,reportedly caught many citizens by surprise.

According to an AFP news agency report, the king said: "African countries on getting independence reverted to their ancient names before they were colonized. So from now on the country will be officially be known as the Kingdom of eSwatini." He also cited another reason for the name change: "Whenever we go abroad, people refer to us as Switzerland."

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Topics: naming, branding

OECD Report: Italy Loses Billions to Counterfeits

by T+B BLOG TEAM on Thursday, 5 July, 2018

Sales of counterfeit Italian goods are taking a 1%–2% bite out of Italy's GDP, according to a recent OECD report. These counterfeit and pirated goods (including luxury handbags, watches, car parts, and more) are estimated to total over €35 billion in 2013 — nearly 5% of global Italian manufacturing sales. The report, "Trade in Counterfeit Goods and the Italian Economy," found that Italian companies lost more than €25 billion in sales.

Imports of fake products into Italy are also an issue — with more than €10 billion worth of products in 2013 mostly imported from China and Hong Kong. High-tech electronic, electrical and optical products were the sectors most affected, with clothing, footwear, and leather products following.

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Topics: counterfeits, Brand protection

ISPs Win UK Case on Website Blocking Costs

by T+B BLOG TEAM on Tuesday, 3 July, 2018

The UK Supreme Court ruled that internet service providers (ISPs) no longer have to pay the cost of blocking websites that breach trademarks. The court's unanimous ruling, against French luxury goods maker Cartier means that companies that want to enforce blocks against, for example, companies that sell counterfeit goods, must now pay "reasonable costs" to ISPs.

Calling the ruling "a potential landmark win," Mobile News notes that the ruling raises questions in the legal community about whether the same principle could apply to illegal downloads of copyrighted music.

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Topics: counterfeits, trademarks

6 Key Features of a Comprehensive Trademark Search Report

by T+B BLOG TEAM on Monday, 2 July, 2018

When you're clearing trademarks, you need a truly complete picture of potential showstoppers or other problems. This is particularly true in the case of the USPTO, where trademark requirements must adhere to exacting standards in order to ensure a smooth application process.

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Topics: trademark clearance, trademarks, trademark search

Monster Energy Loses Trademark Case in Singapore

by T+B BLOG TEAM on Friday, 29 June, 2018

US-based energy drink maker Monster Energy Company (MEC) failed in a bid to stop Chinese investment company Tencent Holdings Limited from registering a trademark for Monster Castle in Singapore. Monster Castle is a "tower defense game" made by video gamemaker Sixjoy Hong Kong Limited. Tencent filed a trademark application in Singapore for the game's name in 2015.

MEC has eight registered trademarks in Singapore in Classes 9, 41, and 42, which include scientific, nautical, and digital media products; education, entertainment and sporting activities services; and scientific, technological services, and software and hardware design.

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Topics: names, trademarks

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