Chinese Law Prof Blog

Editor: Donald C. Clarke
George Washington University Law School

Saturday, February 18, 2012

The Proview vs. Apple dispute over the iPad name in China

The right to use the letters IPAD (regardless of upper- or lower-case) has been the subject of recent litigation and enforcement actions in China in which Apple is (so far) losing. I am by no means an IP expert, but I recognize sound analysis when I see it, and so recommend that any one interested check out the series of posts on this topic by Stan Abrams at the China Hearsay blog. Just go to the blog address and search for "Proview", then start from the earliest post. For the back story, first see these two stories (first | second) from the Financial Times.

Brief takeaway: This is not a story about China's failure to protect intellectual property. It's much more likely a story of bad lawyering and careless due diligence on Apple's part. (Likely, but not definitely - we don't know all the details yet.)

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It is interesting that in most cases the American company is the plaintiff complaining an Asian company violating the plaintiff's rights. In this case, it is the reverse. More significantly for this case, there will be comparison how a Chinese court decide on the issues different from the American court. One of my former law student from China is a prominent IP judge in shanghai. I may ask her how she would have adjudicated the issues

Posted by: Frankie Fook-lun Leung | Mar 8, 2012 11:18:18 AM

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