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This week's IP news round-up

22 February 2005

Before we get started this week, Own It would like to welcome Google News users to our weekly IP round-up party.

That’s right! Everyone’s favourite news portal has finally got round to linking to us! Hurrah! And so with standing room only, let’s get on with the show…

First up, we are slightly amused to find the notoriously litigious easyGroup on the other end of a passing off suit for a change. The group, which owns a whole load of easyBrands including easyJet, is being targeted by mobile phone operator Orange after easyGroup announced plans to launch a rival phone service. Orange claim that easy’s use of the colour orange in their logo is likely to lead to confusion amongst customers. Both companies have been trying to find an amicable solution over the past few months but have failed to reach agreement. According to the ipKat, Orange are now launching an action for passing off to prevent easy launching their orange-branded service next month.

And so to Australia where the Attorney General is considering allowing people to make private copies of copyright material for their own use. According to, he proposed new law is intended to allow purchasers of products like CDs and DVDs to transfer their purchases on to MP3 players and digital video recorders for their own use. However, the law may be scuppered by a US-Australian trade agreement to ban the use of software that breaks copy protection on copyrighted works. Watch this space for updates.

And finally to Saudi Arabia, where medical experts are growing increasingly concerned about the availability of counterfeit Viagara. “The danger of these counterfeit medications is in not knowing their source, contents, production process, storage and shipping conditions in addition to their health effects,” Dr. Magdi Mohsen, told “Even those medications carrying the same logo and packaging of Pfizer imported from other countries might not be authentic or approved by the Ministry of Health [in Saudi Arabia].” You have been warned.

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