The usually quiet summer months were interrupted this year by significant CJEU rulings affecting copyright, trade marks and SPCs.
Land Nordrhein-Westfalen v Dirk Renckhoff (Case C-161/17 ECLI:EU:C:2018:634) is the latest case to address the ‘making available’ and ‘communication to the public’ language in Directive 2001/29/EC. In a decision that favours copyright owners, the CJEU concluded that the concept of ‘communication to the public’ must be interpreted as meaning that it covers the posting on one website of a photograph previously posted, without any restriction preventing it from being downloaded and with the consent of the copyright holder, on another website.
The judgment in Teva UK Ltd and Others v Gilead Sciences Inc (Case C-121/17, ECLI:EU:C:2018:585) is the court’s latest attempt to clarify provisions of Regulation (EC) No 469/2009 on supplementary protection certificates (SPCs), and in particular what is meant by the phrase ‘product protected by a basic patent in force’ in Article 3(a).
The court has also published three significant judgments on trade mark law: Mitsubishi Shoji Kaisha Ltd, Mitsubishi Caterpillar Forklift Europe BV v Duma Forklifts NV, G.S. International BVBA (Case C-129/17, ECLI:EU:C:2018:594) on the importation into the EEA of de-branded/re-branded goods; Société des produits Nestlé SA and Others v Mondelez UK Holdings & Services Ltd (Joined Cases C‑84/17 P, C‑85/17 P and C‑95/17 P, ECLI:EU:C:2018:596) concerning an application for the shape of a four-finger chocolate bar and how to prove acquired distinctiveness in the EU; and Coöperatieve Vereniging SNB-REACT U.A. v Deepak Mehta (Case C-521/17, ECLI:EU:C:2018:639), which addressed two questions concerning when a brand owners’ association can bring IP infringement proceedings and liability for registering IP addresses linked to infringing domain names.
The IP/IT Briefing is part of the Bloomsbury Law Online Service. The full briefing is available here.