Here are some of the most interesting:
Brompton Bicycle: The CJEU ruled that copyright protection “applies to a product whose shape is, at least in part, necessary to obtain a technical result, where that product is an original work resulting from intellectual creation, in that, through that shape, its author expresses his creative ability in an original manner by making free and creative choices in such a way that that shape reflects his personality, which it is for the national court to verify, bearing in mind all the relevant aspects of the dispute in the main proceedings”. The questions arose in a copyright infringement case concerning the folding Brompton bicycle in Belgium (Case C-833/18).
CCB: The CJEU set aside the lower decisions in a dispute concerning likelihood of confusion between trade marks for CCB and CB, saying: “the judgment under appeal is devoid of an assessment of the reputation and distinctive character of the earlier mark duly carried out on the basis of the services designated by that mark in relation to ‘financial affairs’, ‘monetary affairs’ and ‘banking’, that broader spectrum of services designated by that mark nonetheless being … that on the basis of which it was appropriate to assess whether there is a risk that the public might erroneously believe that the services offered by CCB under the mark applied for come from the Groupement des cartes bancaires or an undertaking connected therewith” (Case C-115/19 P).
PLOMBIR: The CJEU upheld the General Court’s finding that the word mark PLOMBIR is descriptive for Russian speakers in Germany and the Baltic States as it is a transliteration of the Russian term for “ice cream” (Case C-142/19 P).
PRIMART: The CJEU set aside the General Court’s judgment in a case concerning likelihood of confusion between the figurative sign PRIMART and a Spanish trade mark for PRIMA. The lower court had upheld the opposition but the CJEU said: “the General Court made an error of law in … the judgment under appeal by declaring the appellant’s argument concerning the allegedly weak distinctive character of the earlier mark inadmissible on the ground that that argument had been put forward before it for the first time” (Case C-702/18 P).
WALLAPOP: Advocate General Hogan gave his Opinion in a case between the two signs shown here which raises the question: are online trading services relating to the operation of an online marketplace different or similar to retailing services? The Advocate General endorsed the finding of the General Court that “online services” etc and “retailing of sporting articles” in class 35 were at the very least similar to a low degree (Case C-763/18 P).
LVM: The EU General Court overturned a Board of Appeal decision to invalidate the figurative mark pictured, which was registered for goods in class 8, saying: “by choosing to examine only a small part of the evidence submitted by the applicant and to disregard the other numerous pieces of evidence, without providing any explanation for that choice, the Board of Appeal erred in law by making a partial assessment of the evidence … some of the evidence in the exhibits which the Board of Appeal did not take into account in the contested decision was potentially relevant for the purposes of assessing whether the mark at issue had acquired distinctive character through use”. The judgment clarifies the requirements for proving acquired distinctiveness following the Nestlé v Mondelez decision (Case T-105/19).
Air conditioning couplings: The EU General Court set aside a Board of Appeal decision concerning the validity of a registered Community design for a coupling for connecting refrigeration or air conditioning equipment to a motor vehicle (Case T-100/19, not yet in English).