Tuesday, January 31, 2012
chasing the bad guys
An IP attorney’s life is peppered with dodgy outfits that try to trick unsuspecting clients into parting with their money. Trolling through the notices of acceptance in the official trade mark journals of government registries worldwide, these outfits gather up the addresses of brand new brand owners and send them official-looking invoices for “registration” or “publication” or some other official-sounding but nebulous service.
The government registries carry warnings about this. IP attorneys repeatedly warn their clients not to pay. Some years ago, it was even rumoured that Interpol was investigating. The bad guys expanded their net to encompass sham domain name conflicts in China. Attorneys and trade marks registries continued to warn brand owners. And still the con artists proliferated.
An enterprise in the USA offering publication of new trade marks in a “catalog” hit on the wrong guys recently, when they sent a solicitation to pay a fee to an attorney firm, Leason Ellis of White Plains, New York. Leason Ellis decided to take them on, and are suing for false advertising and unfair competition. Read about it here on The Trademark Blog.
Kudos, Leason Ellis. We’re right behind you on this one.