This week on MIP: Panasonic v Xiaomi, Tupac copyright row
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This week on MIP: Panasonic v Xiaomi, Tupac copyright row

Panasonic(パナソニック)
Moscow Kremlin and St Basil's Cathedral on the Red Square in Moscow, Russia.

We provide a rundown of Managing IP’s news and analysis coverage from the week, and review what’s been happening elsewhere in IP

UK judge slams Panasonic over ‘supra-FRAND’ royalty tactics

A UK judge had harsh words for Panasonic after suggesting the Japanese standard-essential patent owner wanted the ability to get Xiaomi “over a barrel” in royalty negotiations.

In an order issued on November 8, Mr Justice Richard Meade at the England and Wales High Court said he could not understand why Panasonic refused to promise it would not enforce a European injunction against the Chinese smartphone maker.

Click here to read the full story.

Finding a voice: IP boutique partners reflect on quitting ‘big law’

To mark the firm’s one-year anniversary, two partners at Groombridge Wu Baughman & Stone in the US revealed the biggest challenges of getting a new firm off the ground.

Nicholas Groombridge and Jennifer Wu spoke to Managing IP about what it’s like to work at their own IP boutique, the greatest challenges of forming the firm, what their hopes were for their first year and why a ping-pong table proved to be significant.

Click here to read the full article.

Other articles published by Managing IP this week include:

Move on up: Mintz IP head talks higher rates and raiding rivals

In or out? The perils of picking IP counsel

How firms stop departing partners from taking clients with them

Weekly take: INTA president tenure comes at critical counterfeits juncture

Too many cooks: inventorship an increasing problem for patent counsel

Five minutes with … Virginia Melgar, EUIPO Boards of Appeal

Elsewhere in IP

ADR in Alicante

The EUIPO launched an IP mediation centre that will provide free alternative dispute resolution (ADR) services on Wednesday, November 22.

The centre offers a range of ADR, including mediation, conciliation, and expert determination.

All parties involved in second-instance proceedings before the EUIPO can benefit from these services.

SMEs may, however, request ADR for first-instance proceedings, including oppositions, cancellations, and invalidations.

The EUIPO plans to gradually extend ADR services for first instance proceedings to all users in 2024 and 2025.

Growth survey

The UKIPO has asked businesses to explain how intellectual property can help them grow.

Businesses are encouraged to take part in asurvey published this week and submit their responses by February 2, 2024.

In an announcement on Monday, November 20, the UKIPO said it wanted to hear from businesses of all sizes, and from a wide range of sectors so that it can understand how to support them most effectively.

The survey also covers topics including how businesses raise external finance – such as leveraging their IP assets to secure funding – and explores awareness, perception, and use of IP litigation insurance products.

Dear Mama

A song by the late rapper Tupac is at the heart of a new copyright infringement lawsuit filed by a producer who says he is owed royalties for the track 'Dear Mama'.

Terence Thomas, known as Master Tee, claims Universal Music Group (UMG) “conspired” to withhold royalties from him.

“A self-serving group, led by an upstart music producer, Tony D. Pizarro, conspired with executives at Interscope Records and UMG, misappropriated Master Tee’s publishing copyright and master recording copyright and assumed the identity of writer/publisher of ‘Dear Mama’,” said a complaint filed on November 18 at the US District Court for the Southern District of New York.

Emotional Perception

Some patent attorneys think a decision by the England and Wales High Court on Tuesday, November 21, could make the UK an easier jurisdiction to protect machine learning technology.

“The UKIPO just got over-ruled in what I am taking as a major potential opening of the door to patenting AI related inventions in the UK,” wrote Ilya Kazi, founder of IK-IP on LinkedIn on Wednesday, November 22.

The court overruled the UKIPO hearing officer’s finding that an artificial neural network is not a computer program per se, in a win for Emotional Perception AI.

Philip Cupitt, partner at Marks & Clerk, wrote: “Assuming that the UKIPO follows this decision rather than appealing it, the UKIPO will become a more favourable jurisdiction than the EPO in which to prosecute patent applications for many machine learning inventions. These could be interesting times.”

UK R&D

The UK government will give tax relief to more SMEs that can prove they are sufficiently R&D-intensive, it was confirmed on Monday, November 20.

The changes, outlined in the government's Autumn Statement, mean SMEs with a qualifying R&D expenditure of 30% will qualify for tax relief, compared to the current rate of 40%.

According to the government, the policy will provide £65 million ($81.5 million) of support to around 5,000 extra SMEs.

That's it for today, see you again next week.

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