Author: Hayleigh Bosher

I work in advertising –what do I need to know about IP?

The most important intellectual property (IP) rights applicable to advertising are passing off, trade marks, and copyright. Passing off Advertisers should be careful not to ‘pass off’ a client’s goods or services as those of their client’s competitors. This may occur if an advert misrepresents the client’s goods or services as those of a competitor in such a way that it may confuse that competitor’s actual or potential customers or tarnish the reputation of the competitor’s products. Passing off may also occur if a celebrity is used in such a way that it may imply the celebrity has endorsed...

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Licensing: The Basics

What is a licence? A licence is a limited permission for another person to use your IP rights. It is a contract between the rights holder and the licensee whereby the rights holder consents for the licensee to do certain acts in exchange for some form of remuneration. Licensing is a very flexible way of exploiting IP because the parties to a contract are generally free to agree the terms they choose, depending on their commercial objectives. It is prudent to have these terms in writing so that both parties can be certain of the rights and obligations that...

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What is Confidential Information?

In order for information to be protected as confidential two conditions must be fulfilled: (a) The information must have the necessary ‘quality of confidence’. It must not be information, which is in the public domain. With the exception of trivial, immoral and vague information, no restrictions are placed on the subject matter that is protected by the law of confidence. (b) The information must have been imparted in circumstances importing an obligation of confidence, as for example, where you emphasise that the information is to be kept confidential. If the information does not fulfil the first requirement you cannot make it...

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How can I protect my ideas when meeting prospective clients?

It is important before entering into negotiations with any third parties or prospective clients to be aware of how your work or idea is or might already be protected by the various intellectual property (IP) rights which exist. Confidential information Your ideas may be protected under the law of confidential information. Information about your idea will be considered to be ‘confidential information’ if: it is of a confidential nature: This means that your idea must be non-trivial, have commercial value and not already be public knowledge before you go to any meeting; and it is communicated in confidence: This...

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Using Other People’s Trade Marks in Your Film or Performance

Introduction Whether you are an independent film-maker, a big-budget studio or a theatre production, careful consideration must be given to any content which may infringe the intellectual property rights of others. Since we live in a commercially orientated society, companies often go to great lengths to protect their brands, products and reputation. In particular, content in a film or performance featuring another party’s “trade mark” may result in a lawsuit unless the necessary clearances have been made. The use of trade marks A trade mark is the legal equivalent of a potter’s stamp and is what allows someone to...

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