Trademark Law

Golden bears: the trademark struggle between Haribo and Lindt

The two world famous confectionery producers, Haribo and the Swiss chocolatier Lindt & Sprüngli, are locked in a bitter struggle over golden bear trademark rights. An appeal has now been lodged with the Cologne Higher Regional Court. More →

Can smartphone app names infringe German trademark law?

The High Court of Justice in Berlin has handed down a ruling in which it discusses the possibility of smartphone app names infringing trademark. The case concerned the name “Stadt Land Fluss”. More →

The trademark dispute between VW and BILD

In a trademark dispute between Volkswagen AG and the online edition of Germany’s BILD-Zeitung, Germany’s Federal Court of Justice had to decide whether an advertising campaign by the BILD infringed VW’s trademark rights. More →

Euro symbol not registrable as a trademark

The European Union’s General Court reached a judgment in July 2013 that the Euro symbol (€), is a protected symbol under EU law and cannot be registered as a trademark by businesses. More →

Twix or Raider? Legal tips on registering a trademark

Businesses sometimes succeed in shaping a generation with their brand-named products. Many remember fondly the chocolate bar Raider, while others prefer to devour a Twix. But aren’t they the same? This seems a good opportunity to discuss the legal steps involved in registering a trademark. More →

Ensuring SEO techniques comply with trademark law

The aim of search engine optimisation is to improve the ranking of a website in free search engine results. Fraudulent methods to manipulate rankings, such as using inappropriate search terms are becoming more popular, but they carry severe legal consequences. More →

Use of Google Adwords can breach trademark law

Germany’s Federal Court of Justice (Bundesgerichtshof, BGH) has decided that using a competitor’s brand name as a keyword in a Google Adwords list can breach German trademark law (Az. I ZR 172/11). More →

Microsoft to change name of Skydrive

After losing a trademark dispute with the British Sky Broadcasting Group plc, Microsoft has agreed to change the name of its Skydrive cloud service. More →

German government proposes amendments to Designs Act

The German government has published proposals to amend Germany’s Designs Act. The language of the current act will be adapted to international parlance and a new procedure for challenging the validity of designs will be introduced.

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Victory Outreach accuses Twitter of trademark infringement

The international ministry, Victory Outreach International, has accused Twitter of contributing to the infringement of its trademark rights by refusing to delete the username @VICTORYOUTREACH. The civil action has been brought before a court in Missouri USA. More →