iPhone Trademark Dispute Goes Canadian

In an update to our January 11, 2007 posting on Apple Computer Inc.’s troubles with it’s proposed iPhone trademark in the U.S. and Canada, Toronto based Comwave Telecom Inc. is continuing with it’s opposition to Apple’s application to register the iPhone mark in Canada on a proposed use basis. Even though Comwave filed its application to register the mark in Canada after Apple did, Comwave claims to have used its iPhone mark in Canada since 2000 in association with local and long distance telephone services and VoIP telephone services. Under Canadian trademark law, it appears to have the upper hand if it can prove its prior use claims.  

Comwave is also threatening to go after Cisco for promoting its iPhone products in Canada. However, if Cisco’s claims are true that it has no sales of those products in Canada at this time, Comwave’s threats appear to be more of a shot over the bow.

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Glen Breton vs. Scotch Whisky – Round 1

In a follow up to our posting of December 20, 2006, the Trade-marks Opposition Board has now sided with the Nova Scotia distiller of GLEN BRETON whisky.  In the Opposition Board’s view, members of the public who purchase GLEN BRETON whisky will not be confused into thinking that they are buying Scotch Whisky.  The Scotch Whisky Association has indicated that it will appeal the decision to the Federal Court, so stay tuned for Round 2.

More Olympic Trade-mark Issues

Protecting the official trademarks of the Olympic Games is proving to be an ongoing challenge for the organizers of the Beijing 2008 Games, as well as the Vancouver 2010 Games. We reported some time ago regarding possible new Canadian legislation. Beijing organizers are now threatening legal action against pranksters that are using the Internet to poke fun at several of the official marks of the Beijing Games.

The website of the Vancouver Organizing Committee includes a 36-page list setting out the official marks of the Vancouver Organizing Committee and the Canadian Olympic Committee, including the Beijing Games marks that are currently being targeted. A portfolio of that size will likely generate some interesting new developments in trademark law as we draw closer to the 2010 Games.

About the Blog

The authors of the Canadian Trademark Blog are all members of the Canadian law firm Clark Wilson LLP, based in Vancouver, Canada. Each author's practice focuses–either in whole or in substantial part–on Canadian intellectual property law. Together, they manage the trade-mark portfolios of local, national and international brand owners in nearly all industries and markets.

The Authors