The Guangzhou Intellectual Property Court (the GZ IP Court) recently made the first-instance judgement (not effective yet) for the two zipper patent infringement cases in which we r...
Introduction The two patents involved, namely, Method for Decoding Based on Intra Prediction and Apparatus for Decoding Based on Intra Prediction, are standard patents in the worldl...
We successfully invalidated a number of trademarks which infringed name right of famous artist

Case summary: Romero Britto is a famous pop artist around the world. His works are very popular among collectors as well as the public. A Chinese company preemptively registered Mr. Britto’s surname “BRITTO” in a number of classes in China. On behalf of the client, we submitted invalidations against these trademarks. We collected much evidence to prove that Mr. Britto is not only famous around the world, but also famous in China, the word “BRITTO” was directly referred to Romero Britto, and the Chinese company had bad faith in connecting their business activities with Mr. Romero Britto.

Our comments: It is relatively difficult to have support from authorities regarding preemptive registration against common surname of a foreign person in practice. The name right holder needs to prove the surname can be directly referred to the foreign person, and the trademark applicant has bad faith when filing the application. In these invalidations, we found the Chinese company using Mr. Britto’s photo, introduction and information of works in the online shops set up in JD and Tmall platforms, which showed clearly that the trademark registrant had intention to connect its business activities to Mr. Britto. Since Internet evidence is easily to be changed, we had the webpages notarized and submitted in the cases. The Trademark Review and Adjudication Board finally supported our claims and announced the “BRITTO” trademarks invalidated.

In addition, Mr. Britto’s works have been extensively commercialized and integrated with daily use products under operation by Mr. Britto’s company. These products are welcomed by consumers. To avoid other preemptive registration, the client adopted our advice and filed trademark applications for his name and some important works.

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