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Philippines: IPOPHL logo attacked

On September 22 2015, Kristian Kabuay, a blogger in the website accused the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IPOPHL) of having stolen its Baybayin logo. The controversial logo is shown.

Baybayin is an ancient Philippine script and not generally understood in the Philippines, but its characters are used artistically and part of Philippine heritage. For example, the Philippine banknotes issued in 2010 contained Baybayin characters. The graphic image contained within the circular device of the IPOPHL logo pertains to the Baybayin equivalent of the Tagalog word "una" meaning first. The bloggers claim that sometime in 2011, a certain John Leyson made a presentation to redesign IPOPHL's logo and came out with the above graphic image, with a description. They also claim that the use by the IPOPHL (which launched the logo some time in October 2011 but without acknowledging Leyson or paying him) is not fair use.

On September 23 2015, the IPOPHL reacting to Kabuay's article and those who posted their comments issued an official statement in its website: that it commissioned the Design Center of the Philippines to design the logo in consultation with IPOPHL officials in August 2011, and has used it since its launching; that it was only on May 25 2015 or four years from its logo launching, that the IPOPHL was made aware of the demands of Leyson and other entities in the Baybayin group, for payment in the amount of Ps500,000 ($10,500) as compensation for the design, concept and use of the logo, which the IPOPHL rejected during one of the meetings with said group.

According to the IPOPHL, it has never met nor transacted with any one of the members or officers of the Baybayin group from conceptualisation to completion of the logo. The IPOPHL also stated that Baybayin characters are commonly used on logos of several government agencies, and since the Baybayin is an ancient script, no one has an exclusive right to use it. On September 25, Kabuay commented on the IPOPHL's official statement, and warned of the bomb that Leyson would drop.


Editha R Hechanova

Hechanova & Co., Inc.Chemphil Bldg.851 Antonio Arnaiz AvenueMakati City 1223, PhilippinesTel: (63) 2 812-6561Fax: (63) 2

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