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E-Books Series is a concentration of the most relevant information on e-commerce and Internet laws and regulations around the world. Conveniently divided in sections consisting of articles on specific topics, supplemented with links to the sources of law and regulations, e-Books provide an excellent and quick resource of knowledge on Internet and e-commerce issues and applicable principles of law. Electronically accessed supplemental materials are provided to enhance a dynamic informative process. E-Books are conveniently accessible online or through a downloadable version. A pocket size version of eBooks is also available. IBLS e-Book Series reserves all intellectual property rights. Any re-distribution of this material without appropriate license will be prohibited. For license inquiries write to e-books@ibls.com



 

Internet Search - Public Domain v.  IP Rights

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Internet Search - Public Domain v. IP Rights

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 Introduction
 Chapter 1: Section one: Search Engine and Copyright Laws
arrowLOUIS VUITTON PUSHES GOOGLE ALMOST TO THE LIMIT
arrowTHE INITIAL INTEREST CONFUSION THEORY: THE BEGINNING OF LIABILITY FOR SEARCH ENGINE COMPANIES
arrowSEARCH ENGINE COMPANIES MAY BE LIABLE UNDER THE LANHAM ACT AND THE INITIAL INTEREST CONFUSION THEORY
arrowGOOGLE MARKETS BOOK SEARCH TO UNEASY EUROPEAN EDITORS
arrowSEARCH ENGINE LAW THRIVES
arrow“USE IN COMMERCE:” POSSIBLE DEFENSE FOR SEARCH ENGINE COMPANIES
arrowSCOPE OF PUBLIC DOMAIN INFORMATION THROUGH THE INTERNET
arrowEXPERT: SEARCH LAW IS NOT UNIFORM; SEARCH ENGINES ARE NOT NEUTRAL
arrowGOOGLE: BEWARE OF UNETHICAL SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZERS
arrowSAFE HARBOR PROVISIONS FOR INTERNET SERVICE PROVIDERS UNDER THE ONLINE COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT LIABILITY LIMITATION ACT (OCILLA)
 Chapter 2: Section two: Search Engines and Intellectual Property Litigation
arrowFAIR USE DEFENSE UNDER COPYRIGHT LAW
arrowPROOF OF COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT
arrowSEARCH ENGINES AND INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LITIGATION
arrowKEYWORD DISPUTES
arrowSEARCH ENGINES - INFORMATION AT YOUR FINGERTIPS
arrowIMAGE SEARCHES AND THE ISSUE OF COPYRIGHTS
arrowPAGE JACKERS
arrowAPPLICATION OF THE FAIR USE DOCTRINE IN INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY AND SEARCH ENGINES LITIGATION
arrowDOES THE USE OF THUMBNAILS BY SEARCH ENGINE COMPANIES CONSTITUTE FAIR USE?
arrowDEEP LINKING AND POSSIBLE CAUSE OF ACTIONS
 Supplemental Documents
arrowMay broadband providers control what you see on Internet?
arrow Another Fine Line: Civil Liberties and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act
arrowWhat Laws Apply to Intellectual Property Cybercrimes?
arrowThe Information Technology era is Showing its Prominence: Social Media is Seeking Patents for its Innovative Business Models
arrowCusto Barcelona to sue eBay for allowing the sale of false designer items
arrowCourts Split on Trademark-Triggered Internet Ads
arrowYahoo China Wins Lawsuit against Chinese Search Engine
arrowTemporary Restraining Orders in Online Advertising Cases must be Obeyed Immediately
arrowVideo-Sharing: may this new Internet Phenomenon Violate Copyrights?
arrowWebsite Vandalism and Legal Issues to Address: Copyrights, Cyber-crime, Jurisdiction and much more!
arrowThe new face of Copyright law in Australia
arrowViolation of Intellectual Property Rights on the Internet: for Digital risks, Digital Solutions
  
 

Abstract:

Search engine companies follow highly technical procedures to increase search capability and offer better service, yet, violation of intellectual property rights may be at stake. Intellectual property laws and principles have been widely used in search engines companies' lawsuits. This e-book covers a majority of the legal issues such as: copyright infringement, trademark violations, keyword and meta tags disputes and image searches, the use of thumbnails, deep linking, image infringement, the Initial Interest Confusion Theory, page-jacking OCILLA's safe harbor, a new copyright third party liability doctrine among others.   

 

 

  

 
CHAPTER 1: Section one: Search Engine and Copyright Laws

 
arrowLOUIS VUITTON PUSHES GOOGLE ALMOST TO THE LIMIT

A French court has ruled for the second time against Google and in favor of Louis Vuitton. Three years ago, the French handbag maker sued the U.S.-based search engine company for allowing third parties to use Louis Vuitton registered trademarks as key words for ads placed in Google. Last year, a Paris court ruled Google must cease the practice of showing competitors ads when people searched for “Louis Vuitton,” as well as pay Louis Vuitton damages for its previous actions. Recently, an appeals court upheld that decision and raised the damages Google must pay Louis Vuitton. Google is said to be in the process of reviewing the latest decision and deciding whether to appeal to a higher court. Court rulings such as this one are fundamental. They not only set the standards for lawsuits pending against Google for similar practices in other countries, but also make statements on highly crucial issues, including the powers and limitations of search engines and jurisdiction over the global digital world.
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arrowTHE INITIAL INTEREST CONFUSION THEORY: THE BEGINNING OF LIABILITY FOR SEARCH ENGINE COMPANIES

Search engine and internet advertisers have found technological systems to provide ‘better location’ and visibility for their patrons’ advertisements (ads). One of these inventions is Meta tags. In simple terms, Meta tags are HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) codes incorporated to an advertisement or webpage that depict that website content and will increase visibility for those searching the web. There are two types of Meta tags, ‘description’ and ‘keyword’ Meta tags. The main objective in using description Meta tags is to describe the website content. At least at its inception, keyword Meta tags intended to use common words or sentences found in a specific website to trigger visibility of the Ads. No doubt Meta tags are an excellent tool for search engine patrons and for Internet surfers. It is an excellent marketing strategy for search engine patrons and time-efficiency instrument for Internet users. Yet, search engine companies turned intense in helping their patrons. They embarked on the sensitive journey of using trademarked terms in Meta tags. But, is this use legal? May search engines be liable for the use of trademarked terms in keyword Meta tags? May this violate the trademark laws and unfair competition rules? The answer to these and other related questions follow.
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arrowSEARCH ENGINE COMPANIES MAY BE LIABLE UNDER THE LANHAM ACT AND THE INITIAL INTEREST CONFUSION THEORY

The Lanham Act is the applicable trademark law in the United States (15 USC) and it is similar to most developed countries’ trademark laws (they mostly followed the World Intellectual Property Organization – Wipo- rules). The Initial Interest Confusion Theory was first used in the Internet context in Brookfield Communications, Inc. v. West Coast Entertainment (Brookfield). There, the Court of Appeals considered that diverting consumers’ initial interest in a specific company’s product through the use of trademarked terms in Meta tags may create confusion actionable under the Lanham Act. After Brookfield application of the initial interest confusion theory in Internet grounds, Playboy Enterprises, Inc. v. Netscape Communications Corp. (Playboy) came to complement the issue of liability for the use of trademarked terms. Yet, this time the liability was held to exist on the search engine company as opposed to the advertisers’ company. Playboy ruling makes a search engine either directly or contributory liable for the use of trademarked terms in the search engine keying practices. How did the Court reach this conclusion? What is keying? Are there limits to the liability of a search engine accused of trademarked infringement through its keying practices? What could search engine companies assert as defense for this liability? These questions may have some answer in the Playboy case analyzed in this summary.
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arrowGOOGLE MARKETS BOOK SEARCH TO UNEASY EUROPEAN EDITORS

Goggle has embarked in an international public relations campaign to sell Google Book Search in Europe. The program, which allows search engine users to locate the full text of books and identify where to buy or borrow these publications, has triggered alarms throughout the continent, where editors and publishers are worried the digitization of books would pose flagrant copyright violations and a decrease in sales, while politicians and private investors rush to build a search engine and digital library to keep these processes in-house. Google, meanwhile, is trying to convince the European editors that the search program does not violate copyright because it only showcases books with the permission of authors and publishers, and that it is an excellent marketing tool because books remain accessible through the program longer than in print form.
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arrowSEARCH ENGINE LAW THRIVES

In a recently published paper, Professor Urs Gasser of the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland evaluates the evolution of search engines and the laws regulating these companies and their Internet-search programs. According to Gasser, court cases have focused on trademark disputes, privacy concerns and freedom of expression issues, while regulations have addressed content and its limits; immunity from liability for copyright infringement; legal responsibility for the publication of content; as well as consumer protection. Emerging law, the professor adds, will focus on regulating search engine infrastructure, indexing, content and security; the protection of privacy and intellectual property rights; as well as ethical issues.
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arrow“USE IN COMMERCE:” POSSIBLE DEFENSE FOR SEARCH ENGINE COMPANIES

A trademark infringement case in the United States (U.S.) for registered trademarks (15 U.S.C.S. § 1114) or unregistered trademarks (U.S.C.S. § 1125(a)(1)) requires a plaintiff the prove five elements among others: First, that it has a valid mark protected under the Lanham Act; Second, that the defendant “used” the mark; Third, that the “use” was “in commerce”; Fourth, that it was in connection with the sell or advertisement of goods or services; Fifth, that it was without the plaintiff’s consent. Besides the above elements, a plaintiff in a trademark infringement case must prove “likelihood of confusion.” The U.S. Courts interpreting the Lanham Act have long established that likelihood confusion must be present in a granting of trademark infringement claim. Thus, it is fair to say that “use in commerce” and “confusion” are two key elements in a trademark infringement case in the U.S. Counsels draft pleadings and defenses as to best suit their clients’ needs. For instance, plaintiff counsels may want to first focus on the likelihood of confusion theory to defend their client’s claims of trademark infringement. On the other hand, defense counsels may want to argue that there was no “use in commerce” in the defendant’s actions as the Lanham Act requires. In the 1-800contacts, Inc. v Whenu.com, Inc., a U.S. (hereafter “1-800 case”) case against an internet advertisement company, Defendant’s argument that its advertisement practices did not constitute “use in commerce” as required by the Lanham Act was upheld by the Court of Appeals. Thus, it may be reasonable to say that in some specific instance “use in commerce” may constitute a defense for search engine or internet advertisement companies.
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arrowSCOPE OF PUBLIC DOMAIN INFORMATION THROUGH THE INTERNET

“Public domain information” is information that is lawfully available for public use, free of charge, and is not protected by the intellectual property laws of the United States of America or any other country. It includes works and/or other information such as music, invention, artwork, writing, movies, photographs and technology. Governments’ websites and some non-profit organizations offer public domain sites as well. Indeed, many people are using the Internet to contribute to the public domain, or make works in the public domain more accessible to the community. Public domain sites or public domain materials can be copied or used by thousands or even millions of user without any immediate cost. This summary addresses the issue of public domain content under the United States legislation, which will have the same treatment if displayed on the internet. Several questions and answers are provided as the starting point of this discussion.
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arrowEXPERT: SEARCH LAW IS NOT UNIFORM; SEARCH ENGINES ARE NOT NEUTRAL

The emergence of a neutral search engine or a unified search engine law is highly unlikely, according to Stefan Bechtold of Germany’s Max Planck Institute for Research on Collective Goods and Stanford Law School. What we have and will have, Bechtold predicts, are a diversity of programs and legal decisions on search engine matters unless self-regulation kicks in. Best practices may also be used to tackle anti-trust and censorship issues linked to search engines, according to Bechtold. Search engines, Bechtold explains, are not neutral because they use pre-determined factors to set up algorithms and therefore produce certain search results. Several search engines, he adds, have been forced to comply with local censorship laws to stay in business in economic powerhouses such as China. Search engine law, Bechtold says, is disparate and stronger (or weaker) depending on the jurisdiction. To illustrate this situation, Bechtold uses several examples. U.S. law determines when a search engine is liable for copyright violations. European courts are increasingly interpreting national laws to prevent said violations, as well as to prevent access to racist results. U.S. courts, meanwhile, describe the use of thumbnails as fair use, while a German court rules it is a copyright violation. French courts do not allow the use of trademarks as search terms for products from third parties while U.S. and German courts have found no harm in these types of claims. One way to tackle these issues, Bechtold says, is to encourage search engines to engage in self-regulation. Standards could also be used to discourage search engines from engaging in practices to protect their databases that are anti-competitive, as well as to stay in business that may strengthen repressive governments, Bechtold adds.
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arrowGOOGLE: BEWARE OF UNETHICAL SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZERS

Google has guidelines in place to keep companies from falling victims of rogue search engine optimizers. SEOs are consultants that work with companies to improve their search engine rankings. The higher your listing is the more traffic your site will likely receive. Google warns companies to stay away from SEOs that send spam; fail to explain clearly their services and guarantee high rankings. Companies should also stay away from SEOs offering to use shadow domains and doorway pages. These domains mislead users and these pages do not ultimately increase traffic. Other practices to shun are using key words in the address bar because their use requires special software rarely downloaded by viewers; ranking through the use of long, convoluted phrases and getting traffic through false methods. Companies should avoid doing business with SEOs that are not listed or have had domains removed from Google; as well as those that use multiple aliases and falsify domain information. If all else fails, Google advocates reporting rogues to law enforcement authorities and consumer protection agencies.
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arrowSAFE HARBOR PROVISIONS FOR INTERNET SERVICE PROVIDERS UNDER THE ONLINE COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT LIABILITY LIMITATION ACT (OCILLA)

The Online Copyright Infringement Liability Limitation Act (OCILLA), 17 U.S.C.S. §512, established four Safe Harbor provisions for Internet service providers (ISP’s) sued for copyright infringement. Internet service providers have been sued of copyright infringement in the North American Courts based on three main theories, (i) direct copyright infringement, (ii) contributory copyright infringement, and (iii) vicarious copyright infringement. OCILLA’s safe harbor provisions have proved to be a resourceful defense for Internet service providers. Next, we will explore each of these provisions and their relationship with other rules according to courts’ interpretation
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CHAPTER 2: Section two: Search Engines and Intellectual Property Litigation

 
arrowFAIR USE DEFENSE UNDER COPYRIGHT LAW

The fair use doctrine is a defense available when a prima facie case of copyright infringement is proven. The infringer is able to argue that his infringement is acceptable based on certain legal factors. Some of the factors to be considered when presenting a fair use defense are, the nature and purpose of the use, the amount of the copyrighted work that has been used, the nature of the copyrighted work, and the market effect of this infringing use on the copyrighted work. These factors may give the infringer a potential mechanism to avoid liability.
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arrowPROOF OF COPYRIGHT INFRINGEMENT

Copyright laws confer exclusive rights to copyright holders to prevent others from using their works without some written permission in the form of license or assignment. In a copyright infringement case, the copyright holder bears the burden of proof. Copyright holders must persuade the trier of fact that there has been copying and an unlawful appropriation of their copyrighted work. The copyright holder is not required to prove the violator’s mental intent or association to present its infringement case. How is the infringement of the copyright proven; does mere access to a copyrighted work prove copying element; are only the copyrightable elements examined or is the infringing work considered as a whole to prove the unlawful misappropriation? These and other questions are unraveled in this article.
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arrowSEARCH ENGINES AND INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LITIGATION

Search engines find information available on the World Wide Web and provide it to internet users. As search engines evolve, more and more lawsuits claiming infringement of intellectual property rights emerge because that information is sometimes subject to intellectual property rights such as copyright, trademark, etc., and is not available for use by others without permission. This article presents an overview of search engines and the initial intellectual property infringement claims against them.
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arrowKEYWORD DISPUTES

The infringement of trademarks through the use of keywords is quite common in the area of online advertising. It is possible that your competitors use your company’s name, trademark or service mark as a keyword. Thus, if certain other requirements are met, an actionable infringement case arises. Search engines such as Google have been responsible for intellectual property infringements originated on the use of trademarks as keywords. The action is typified by allowing advertisers to purchase company and product names federally registered as trademarks, and use them in “pay-per-click” campaigns as keywords. Using other’s trademarks in keyword searches facilitates diverting potential customers from their competitors. Frustrated by this advertisement practice, trademark owners began challenging search engine companies with the legality of selling their brand names to their competitors. Most of these lawsuits have focused on intellectual property violations but some torts actions have been filed as well.
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arrowSEARCH ENGINES - INFORMATION AT YOUR FINGERTIPS

Search engines use software known as “robots” (also called bots, spiders or crawlers). This software converts search engines in a paramount research tool; it searches out billions of pages on the World Wide Web in seconds. A robot is a computer program that automatically gathers and categorizes information on the Internet and allows users to promptly access any area of information with a single click.
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arrowIMAGE SEARCHES AND THE ISSUE OF COPYRIGHTS

Image search engines are software engines that find images on the web and make them available for the general public. Many Internet users and web site owners copy such images for their personal use. Nevertheless, such copying breaches intellectual property rights and property interest of the image owners unless they authorize such use. Using someone else's work, including images, without the author’s express permission is not permitted under most countries' copyright laws. Internet search engines that help web users find pictures on web are winding up in court on copyright infringement charges. This article addresses the issue of image searches and its treatment under copyright laws.
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arrowPAGE JACKERS

Copyright disclaimers on the Internet are usually ignored by both innocent users and intentional page-jackers. Intentional Page jackers, or simply, page jackers, are individuals engage in creating or developing new websites by copying from others. They concretely copy pages from popular and legitimate websites and later post them to their intended sites. Due to the fact that the jacked pages are identical to the originals, search engines direct unwitting users to the fake sites. This involuntary (or voluntary in certain cases) re-direction to fake WebPages by search Engine Companies may carry legal consequences for search engines. There are two motivations for page jacking; First, additional themed content can increase a site’s overall ranking and result in increased site traffic. Second, these hijacked sites lead search engines to the stolen pages, which can thus earn money through increased product sales.
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arrowAPPLICATION OF THE FAIR USE DOCTRINE IN INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY AND SEARCH ENGINES LITIGATION

The United States (U.S.) Copyrights Legislation appears in title 17 of the United States Code (17 U.S.C.S –The Copyright Act). Title 17 U.S.C.S. §107 establishes the doctrine of Fair Use as a limitation to the exclusive rights conferred by copyrights laws. The Fair Use doctrine states that the “Fair Use” of a copyrighted work is not an infringement of a copyright. People may use copyrighted materials without the consent of the copyright holder as long as that use is “fair”. Courts have developed this fair use concept and held that the Fair Use doctrine “creates a limited privilege in those other than the owner of a copyright to use the copyrighted material in a reasonable manner without the owner’s consent. Fisher v. Dees, 794 F.2d 432, 435 (9th Cir. 1986). The fair use doctrine has been used as a defense in copyright infringement actions, including recent copyright actions against search engine companies. In January 2006, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Nevada made an inclusive analysis of the fair use doctrine in a copyright infringement case against Google, a well-known search engine company.
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arrowDOES THE USE OF THUMBNAILS BY SEARCH ENGINE COMPANIES CONSTITUTE FAIR USE?

According to 17 U.S.C.S. § 106, a copyright holder has the exclusive right to reproduce, distribute, and publicly display copies of his work. Yet, the doctrine of fair use establishes a limitation to the exclusive rights of a copyright holder. The purpose of the fair use doctrine is to foster a less-rigid application of the copyright laws that would stifle creativity. Copyright infringement litigation against search engine companies has frequently focused on the doctrine of Fair Use under 17 U.S.C.S. § 107. Search engine companies have invoked this doctrine as a defense and in many copyright infringement cases they have succeeded. For instance, search engine companies like Arriba Soft Corporation (currently known as Ditto.com) have been sued for copyright infringement for their use of photographs or images in their searching database and they have successfully invoked the doctrine of fair use. However, other search engine companies like Google did not succeed in their fair use claim of thumbnails, although the cases where filed in the same California jurisdiction. This excerpt concentrates on the U.S. Court’s analysis of the fair use doctrine in infringement cases against search engine companies that used copyrighted photographs or images.
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arrowDEEP LINKING AND POSSIBLE CAUSE OF ACTIONS

“Deep linking” occurs when a search engine company or website transfers its internet users to interior web pages found in other websites. Usually, this process is performed by a ‘crawler’ or ‘spider’ automatic system that searches the web according to specific parameters. Once the crawler or spider detects the desired pages, the search engine stores the content of these pages in its Random Access Memory (“RAM”) for some few seconds while it discards copyrighted information and retains useful data. Litigation against search engine companies for deep linking practices is scarce. In the few cases about deep linking, plaintiffs have used copyrighted, contract and tort law to frame their pleadings. Yet a defined uniform rule against deep linking is still to come.
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SUPPLEMENTAL DOCUMENTS:

 
arrowMay broadband providers control what you see on Internet?

On June 19, 2006, a Canadian website published an article commenting on an interesting Canadian bill that just passed the House and is pending approval by the Senate, called “Communications Opportunity, Promotion, and Enhancement (COPE) Act of 2006.” COPE, the author said, contained no guaranties of Internet freedom or “equality,” despite its suggesting name. The Bill intends to eliminate what is called ‘Network neutrality” or “Net neutrality.” Net neutrality allows individuals to use any broadband to access internet and get the same content everybody gets or offers.
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arrow Another Fine Line: Civil Liberties and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act

The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), which was passed in 1998 in order to police online copyright infringement, has been widely criticized by civil rights organizations. Among other criticisms, civil rights organizations contend that the DMCA’s anti-circumvention measures stiffen free speech.
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arrowWhat Laws Apply to Intellectual Property Cybercrimes?

The recent actuality involving software piracy and the distribution of bootleg musical recordings and movies over the Internet is a clear sign that law enforcement authorities are putting a lot of efforts into fighting IP Cybercrimes. Because of the media attention surrounding these crimes and the considerable penalties involved, every organization should educate their employees about what constitutes an IP crime. Most rules regarding IP protection have been codified into federal legislation. In particular, federal legislation targets the use of the Internet and other communication devices used in reproducing/distributing IP material. Civil penalties have been strengthened, and new criminal statutes have been established providing penalties that include imprisonment and fines tied to the estimated value of infringed goods.
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arrowThe Information Technology era is Showing its Prominence: Social Media is Seeking Patents for its Innovative Business Models

The so-called social media or search engine companies are developing creative search methods that enhance search results. Yet, these companies do not want to share their inventions. They are now seeking patents for these innovative search methods.
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arrowCusto Barcelona to sue eBay for allowing the sale of false designer items

In the fight against counterfeiting, renowned clothing designer Custo Barcelona is following the footsteps of Louis Vuitton and Dior. The Barcelona-based company is filing a multimillion-euro lawsuit against an online operator – in this case eBay – for allowing third parties to sell thousands of false Custo Barcelona clothing items daily through the auction site.
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arrowCourts Split on Trademark-Triggered Internet Ads

U.S. cases are widely split on whether trademark-triggered banner ads or sponsored links constitute “use” under the federal trademark statute, whether this sort of usage creates likelihood of customer confusion, and whether the fair-use doctrine is applicable. Courts have struggled to apply traditional trademark principles to purchase of trademark-triggered ads, as well as use of trademarks in metatags or hidden text.
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arrowYahoo China Wins Lawsuit against Chinese Search Engine

Yahoo China, owned by Alibaba.com, won an unfair competition lawsuit against the Chinese search engine Qihoo; Beijing's Second Intermediate Court ordered Qihoo to stop competing unfairly and pay Yahoo $30,000 Yuan in damages and over $40,000 in legal costs. The unfair competition claim emerged when Qihoo, run by a former Yahoo employee, advised users of its 360-Software to uninstall Yahoo’s toolbar because, Qihoo said, Yahoo’s toolbar was “malware.” Qihoo is expected to appeal this decision some time soon.
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arrowTemporary Restraining Orders in Online Advertising Cases must be Obeyed Immediately

The United States Court of Appeals for the Eastern District of California issued a preliminary injunction and a temporary restraining order (TRO) against the defendant who was allegedly infringing plaintiff’s trademark (trademark owners) through online advertisement. Some weeks after the injunction and TRO were issued, defendant was still using plaintiff’s trademark on defendant’s website. Trademark owners moved for contempt for failure to comply with the Court’s order and the court held, “Persons subject to an injunctive order issued by a court with jurisdiction are expected to obey that decree until it is modified or reversed, even if they have proper grounds to object to the order.”
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arrowVideo-Sharing: may this new Internet Phenomenon Violate Copyrights?

Vide-sharing is the contemporary style of free speech. Users generate videos and upload them in video sharing websites. You may find videos on all subjects, colors, flavors, and for every one's taste. Indeed, CNN broadcasted last week an autistic lady who had uploaded her own video on You Tube and her intelligent comments on autistic communication surprised many. But video-sharing is not only a great way for people"s free expression; it is also a multimillion dollar industry vulnerable to lawsuits for copyright infringement. Last year, Google bought You Tube, one of the most famous U.S. video-sharing websites, for US$1.65 billion. You Tube ranked within the 10-most-visited websites last year and no doubt Google was aware of that given the high-purchase. But certainly, Google’s experience in defending from copyright infringement lawsuits will prove valuable for its new video-sharing industry.
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arrowWebsite Vandalism and Legal Issues to Address: Copyrights, Cyber-crime, Jurisdiction and much more!

The spectrum of internet law is getting wild. Traditional copyright infringements, neighborhood vandalism crimes, and jurisdictional questions are now being transferred to the internet all in one package: website vandalism. This phenomenon brings legal and enforcement challenges for governments, courts, and attorneys because in most cases the wrongful conduct is somehow atypical and involved parties may be in different jurisdictions. So, what is website vandalism, who are these criminals, and what law to apply?
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arrowThe new face of Copyright law in Australia

The Copyright Act 1969 (Cth) has recently been given an overhaul to implement the recommendations of a number of copyright law reviews and Australia's remaining obligations under the Australia-United States Free Trade Agreement. The Copyright Amendment Act 2006 (Act) was passed late last year and introduces a number of changes to the Copyright Act, including new fair dealing defences, copyright infringement exceptions and offences and a new protection for technology protection measures. The government decided against introducing a broad 'fair use" provision, similar to the regime existing in the United States. Instead, a new fair dealing defence for parody or satire and specific copyright exceptions were introduced.
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arrowViolation of Intellectual Property Rights on the Internet: for Digital risks, Digital Solutions

Internet has made intellectual property (“IP”) rights more vulnerable to violations by every sector of society; business, students, and, of course, the committed copyright infringer. Thus, those directly affected by copyright violations have resorted to alternative methods to manage intellectual property rights. Those alternative methods are digital technology programs designed to control internet access and use of copyrighted material. There is a range of companies currently offering a variety of digital programs for IP management, this is not news. The extraordinary is the creativity found in some of these digital programs. For instance, Digimarc, an American provider of IP management solutions, created a program called “Digital Watermark.” This program is the digital equivalent of traditional chemical watermarks.
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