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Delhi HC Says ‘VISTARA’ Deserves to be a Well Known Mark

The Delhi High Court (HC) has recently restrained Pilot 18 Aviation Book Store, an aviation studies web portal, from permanently selling and trading products with the ‘VISTARA’ mark. The Court strongly believes that ‘VISTARA’ is worthy of being declared as a Well Known Mark. It has also directed the owner of the web portal to pay a compensation of Rs. 2 lacs to the operator of Vistara Airlines, Tata Sia Airlines Ltd.

The ruling was directed by a Single Judge Bench of Justice, Prathiba M Singh, in the lawsuit filed against the defendant by the plaintiff, Tata Sia Airlines. The plaintiff had taken the case to Court after coming across the fact that the defendant was offering various things like badges, mugs, name tags, etc., with the ‘VISTARA’ mark in an identical device mark or logo form. Moreover, the items were being sold on many E-commerce portals, including Snapdeal and Amazon.

In the complaint filed, the plaintiff stated that the ‘VISTARA’ mark was registered in many jurisdictions like in India, Singapore, etc. Additionally, the plaintiff also claimed that the defendant wrongfully asserted that they were supplying branded aviation products with the mark ‘VISTARA’ to the airlines. On the other hand, the defendant contended that it had never used the trademark and even said that the plaintiff had concocted a fake story. However, the defendant’s claim was found to be false as the Local Commissioner came across a large number of items with the mark ‘VISTARA’ in the inventory of the defendant. The Court recorded that the defendant’s statement was a ‘grave misstatement’ in the face of the Commissioner’s report. Furthermore, it asserted that the defendant was not just selling products with mark ‘VISTARA’ but also with the names of various other airlines, including Air India, SpiceJet, and Jet Airways as well.

According to the Court, merchandise of products with the name of various airlines not only violated the Trademark Rights of the parties involved but also posed a threat since some unauthorized people could have entered into the airport based on counterfeit merchandise illegally bearing the trademarks of the respective airlines.

The Court also stated that the mark ‘VISTARA’ is quite famous in India as it has acquired a unique status and enjoys an enormous reputation in the travel, airline, and tourism industry. The Court further said that the use of this mark in any other unrelated services would create immense confusion and deception in the minds of people. Because of all this, the Court believed that the defendant was liable to be permanently injuncted from using the ‘VISTARA’ mark and had to pay the monetary damages as well.

Consequently, the owner of the web portal agreed that he had made a false statement in the Court and regretted doing the same. The question of ‘further action’ against the owner will be taken in the next hearing. Nevertheless, the Court has ordered the defendant to pay Rs 2 lacs (monetary damages) to the plaintiff within one month from the date of order.

Apple’s New Patent Hints Face ID on Mac

The U.S Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has recently granted a new patent to Apple titled ‘Presence Sensing’ which details a smarter and better version of Face ID along with an auto-wake feature. As per the reports, MacBooks in the future could feature the face ID technology, presently found in iPhones, with some added features to make the usage even more convenient.


Besides unlocking the device, the new Face ID technology is likely to perform two additional features. The new technology on Macs will make sure that the laptop doesn’t go to sleep mode when the person or user is sitting in front of it. In other words, the Face ID will detect the presence of the person sitting in front of it by staying awake. Therefore, the users won’t have to face the hassle of logging in again once the device enters sleep mode. The smarter Face ID could also help the users in performing non-input based tasks on the Mac, such as listening to an audio or reading something. Another exclusive feature will allow a user to sign in to the laptop when its lid is raised or when the user is in front of the device, which is already unlocked. Moreover, this functionality will even work when the Mac is in sleep mode.

Although it sounds like a useful feature, there is absolutely no way of guaranteeing whether Apple will be implementing this feature in the future Mac systems or not. If it does, it will be very much like how Apple loves to add new functionalities and let them work like nothing less than magic in the background.

Apple had introduced the Face ID technology in 2017 with the iPhone X. Last year, Apple extended this exclusive feature to its premium iPad Pro lineup. After the USPTO has accepted Apple’s Patent Application for the same, the idea of Macs getting this biometric feature along with multiple other functions is not a distant dream.

tZERO Wins Patent for TOME Technique to Enable Exchanges on Public Blockchains

tZERO, the global leader in blockchain technology for capital markets, has recently announced that it has been granted a patent for TOME (Time Ordered Merkle Epoch) Technique by the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). The new patent shall allow data from transactions through private blockchains and traditional trading systems to be immutably anchored on public blockchain ledgers.

The tZERO TOME Patent

The technology behind the new TOME patent will be seen integrating traditional trading systems with blockchain technology. TOME, defined as a base-layer technology, uses digital signatures to record and verify time-series data to include executions, settlements, and trades. With this new technology, incoming trades could be recorded efficiently and quickly in a time-series by producing a hash at any time interval that could then be anchored on a public blockchain. By possessing such a capability, tZERO can substantiate the existence of previous trades. Additionally, it can also produce an auditable and immutable record of those transactions. In a nutshell, the technology behind TOME empowers low-latency systems to incorporate the traditional matching engines along with the private blockchain ledgers, to be immutably anchored to public blockchains.

tZERO, a technology firm established in 2014, aims to use blockchain innovation for transforming Wall Street and wants to support and improve market integrity. Since its origin, the firm has pioneered the endeavors to carry out more efficiency and transparency in the capital markets through the perfect blend of blockchain innovation. tZERO has expressed that TOME, in collaboration with another framework, previously patented by the firm, shall empower linkage of the settlement of tokenized blockchain stored securities on a public blockchain, with legacy trading systems. The company even claimed that the system would offer valuable functionality to trading venues and exchanges along with the regulators for audit purposes, needed to report the trading activity.

Remarking on the development, the CEO at tZERO, Saum Noursalehi, stated that the technology would also be licensed to other companies in different fields that wish to maintain a tamper-proof record of time-series-based data.


World’s First Patent Applications Filed for Designs Created By AI

Scientists at the University of Surrey have successfully filed the world’s first Patent Applications at the patent offices of the US, UK, and EU for the inventions created using Artificial Intelligence (AI). The applications filed on behalf of an AI inventor called Dabus (Device for the Autonomous Bootstrapping of Unified Sentience), is a machine that used AI to design two products. If the patent applications get accepted, it will be the first time a machine is recognized as a creator by the Patent Offices. However, presently the UK Patents Act of 1977 along with the European Patent Convention, grant ownership of patents only to “natural persons.” In the US, patent applications filed must be the inventions made by an “individual.”

Seeking Clarity on the Intellectual Property (IP) Laws Prevalent Globally

The applications filed by a group of scientists at the University of Surrey for the machine-designed patent was led by Ryan Abbott, who is the professor of law and health sciences at the University of Surrey. Abbott stated that the applications filed will seek clarity on the surrounding Intellectual Property laws and rules of AI-generated inventions. According to the reports, Abbott will be seen filing a further Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) application through the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) in Geneva. This application will allow him to seek Patent Protection for the designs in a large number of countries.

Patents Should Recognize the Achievements of AI Developers

The machine named Dabus has created the products of a food container that can change shape, and a flashing light designed to attract attention in an emergency. Stephen Thaler, who is an AI expert living in Missouri, created Dabus. He used images and words for teaching the machine on how to produce complex items.

By filing these patent applications, Abbott is hopeful about the fact that people and machines will get the appreciation and credits for their work.

Legal IP Laws Don’t Allow Inventorship to AI Systems

No country across the globe has IP laws specifying how such cases should be handled. While AI has been a creative force since quite a long time now, it has never been credited as an inventor of a patent. In a report on inventorship in inventions involving AI activity presented to the European Patent Office (EPO), the deputy head of the centre for commercial law studies at Queen Mary, University of London, Noam Shemtov, stated that the current legal system doesn’t allow AI systems to be considered as inventors. He also thinks that the same won’t change in the future as well.

Patent Applications filed on behalf of Dabus are currently pending in the US and elsewhere.

Odisha Gets Much-awaited GI Tag for its Rasagola

Odisha has been recently blessed with a sweet victory as it has finally got the Geographical Indication (GI) tag for its very own Rasagola. This much-awaited GI recognition comes a year after West Bengal victoriously walked away with the GI tag. Now, the Odisha Small Industries Corporation Limited (OSIC) and Utkala Mistanna Byabasayee Samiti (Utkala Sweetmakers Business Body) will be recognized as the registered proprietors of Odisha Rasagola’s GI tag and shall obtain all legal and Intellectual Property (IP) protection available for the product. Registered under GI of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act of 2019 as “Odisha Rasagola,” the granted GI tag certificate will be valid till February 22, 2028.

After West Bengal was successful in getting the GI tag for its own “Banglara Rasgulla” in November 2017, Odisha moved the GI Registry for its local version of Rasagola. The state had submitted several documents sought by the GI Registry office. The documents included the moisture and nutrient content of the sweet, its chemical composition, the practices generally adopted during the phase of production, along with the quality and hygiene standards at various stages of production.

Both West Bengal and Odisha have been bitterly engaged in a legal battle since June 2015 over the origin of the Rasgulla. The battle changed for even worse when Pradip Kumar Panigrahi, Odisha’s former Science and Technology Minister, had set up various committees to trace the origin of the sweet delicacy in 2015. To celebrate the origin of Rasagola, they even went further to declare July 30 as “Rasagola Dibasa.”

On the other hand, the Bengal government had also set up a committee and decided to fight the claims put forward by the government of Odisha legally. They even argued by saying that Nabin Chandra Das, a famous sweetmeat-maker, created this quintessential Bengali delicacy in 1868.

As it has been wisely said, “All’s well that ends well,” it is indeed a very proud moment for Odisha for receiving the GI tag. Naveen Patnaik, the Chief Minister of the state, also announced the victory on Twitter.

Oman – MoCI Urges Traders not to sell Counterfeit Products

Amid a rise in the issues of Trademark Infringement in Oman, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry (MoCI) has recently urged traders not to sell counterfeit products in the Sultanate’s markets. Not long ago, some of the traders in Oman were found dealing in counterfeit items including, watches, perfumes, shoes, bags, and telephones.  As per the MoCI, trademark infringement is illegal and leads to a violation of Intellectual Property Rights (IPR).

Ali Bin Hamad Bin Saif Al Mamari, the head of the Intellectual Property Rights Monitoring Department at MoCI, stated that the ministry had recently received several complaints about the counterfeiting of trademarks protected in the markets of the Sultanate. He further added that some traders who were involved in this unethical practice gave the pretext that they were unaware of the rights of the trademark owners. In response to such complaints and issues, the ministry carried out raids and seized a large number of counterfeit products.

Al Mamari said that as per the Article 16/2 of the Unified Trademark Law of the GCC countries, the trademark owners have the power to prevent others from using their trademark without any prior consent. According to Article 42 of the law, which details penalties and punishments for the infringers, trademark violators could be punished by imprisonment for a time of at least one month, and not more than three years; and a fine at the very least of RO 500, and not more than RO 10,000; or one of those two punishments. At last, he urged all the traders and importers to stop the trading and selling of counterfeit products for the protection of the Trademark Rights of the owners.

The Unified Trademark Law of the GCC countries including, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), provides ambit of protection to the trademark owners and also prohibits the registration of well-known marks.

Kanye West Files Trademark Application for his Sunday Service Clothing

Kanye West, an American rapper and fashion designer, has recently filed a Trademark Application for “Sunday Service” (church-themed merchandise) with the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). Sunday Service is the name of West’s weekly concerts where he gathers a group of singers to sing gospel versions of his songs. The musician and designer filed the trademark application on July 19, 2019, under Mascotte Holdings Inc., which is his intellectual holding company that has even filed trademark applications for “Yeezus,” “Red October,” “Kanye West,” to name a few on behalf of the hip-hop star. According to the USPTO, West has filed the trademark application for the phrase “Sunday Service” to use it in the apparel space consisting of shoes, dresses, bottoms, headwear, jackets, scarves, socks, loungewear, shirts, and tops.

West started his Sunday Service gatherings earlier this year by bringing the concept in April to the Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival for Easter Sunday. This weekly gathering has always included various high-profile guests like Katy Perry, the whole Kardashian-Jenner family, Orlando Bloom, and many others.

The rapper has consistently been a divisive figure in the fashion business. In 2015, he came up with his cult-favorite Yeezy collection by collaborating with Adidas and showed the first collection at the New York Fashion Week with a cast of 50 diverse models. His sneakers have gone for a great many dollars on resale sites and his looks made for spouse Kim Kardashian, have routinely been recreated by quick style fashion brands. West’s most infamous moment in fashion accompanied his Season 4 Yeezy Collection, where the audience got trapped in the scorching heat on Roosevelt Island, and many models even collapsed on the runway, due to which, the show received scathing reviews from the critics and editors.

The trademark for the phrase “Sunday Service” follows a host of others filed by the Kardashian and Jenner family, most recently one filed by Kim Kardashian West for baby Psalm West 2 weeks after he was born.


Apple Files Patent
Apple Files Patent Application for Mixed-Reality Headset

Apple, an American multinational tech giant, has recently filed a Patent Application for a mixed-reality headset that would offer 3D virtual views of a user’s environment augmented with virtual content. The patent describes the way an augmented reality headset could capture the real world with the help of outward-facing cameras and then present the same to the users on a display system. Apple had first filed this patent application earlier this year in March, but it got published only within the last week.

According to the application filed, the headset device includes a head-mounted display, collection of cameras, sensors that track the wearer’s eyes, and other sensors that track the external environment.  All these components work together to produce and display a virtual 3D image based on the real world. Additionally, there are a lot of potential variations. The headset could also include hand sensors to track position, movement, and gestures; head pose sensors to track the users’ orientation and motion; sensors that capture information about the real-world lighting conditions in detail; eyebrow sensors to track facial expressions; and lower jaw sensors for tracking movement of the mouth and jaw. Apple describes the VR system to be different from most AR glasses, and it could also use LCD or liquid crystal on silicon technology or might as well use a direct retinal projector system that scans left and right images, pixel by pixel, to the subject’s eyes.

As of now, it is not very clear whether Apple is building any product based on this patent or not. According to the rumors coming out of the supply chain, Apple has dropped its plans for the mixed-reality headset. However, the tech giant is yet to comment officially on its headset plans, including when it intends to come up with such a product.

Shinhan Card
Shinhan Card Patents Blockchain Credit System

Shinhan Card, South Korea’s biggest credit card company, has been recently granted a patent for a blockchain-based payment system. According to the reports, the company has developed a blockchain-powered credit transaction process that offers credit card functionality along with setting spending limits, making monthly installments, and carrying out payments. On this achievement, the company’s official stated that the services using the key features and functions of credit cards would be extended to this blockchain payments system. The official further mentioned that the blockchain payments system is a noteworthy advancement from the status quo, where most blockchain-based services were restricted to cash writing or user identification of online transactions.

The company has patented the blockchain system about 18 months after carrying out a feasibility study, which examined how efficient the technology would be in offering the kind of functionality sought initially.

As per the reports, the patent could soon permit cardless credit transactions that would see many users of this system in making payments via apps on their smartphones. With such kind of development, the traditional card system based on three intermediaries, namely, the credit card firm, value-added network service provider (VAN), and the payment gateway, would be disrupted immensely.

This technology has come on the heels of a new platform set up by the parent company to the Shinhan Card, known as Shinhan Financial Group. This year in May, they had unveiled a new blockchain-based platform speeding up the loan process by verifying the necessary terms to approve credit lending.

Shinhan Card is now expected to expand the patent beyond South Korea and has already filed a Patent Application the US, Europe, Vietnam, China, and Indonesia. However, the status of those patents at this point is still unknown.