Barroso praises Zombie journalists

Thursday, February 03, 2011 | 4 comments »

Rumours of their death have been greatly mispronounced

Hats off to the Brussels Press Club, a new meeting point, press conference venue, and most importantly, bar for the international hacks at EU HQ.

A committee of journalists and the Belgian political authorities is not the most obvious recipe for getting something done. But here it is.

There are no chesterfield armchairs, white-tunicked serving boys, or local girls of questionable morals (and gender) lounging around. But maybe that'll come.

They even got European Commission president Jose Manuel Barroso to find a gap in his busy schedule selling hooky designer gear from his car boot to attend the launch.

And full of kind words was he, for the ragtag "pillars of democracy" surrounding him.

Except when he intoned triumphantly from his prepared notes that "the Brussels press corpse is alive and well."

As one wag noted, "the 'P' is silent. As in 'swimming baths.'" (thank you Tippler)


Corporate colours

Thursday, January 06, 2011 | , , | 0 comments »

Campest trademark battle ever reaches EU courts

Deutsche Telekom, owner of the T-Mobile networks, is continuing its ten-year legal battle to protect the colour of its logo with a case before the European Courts against its Scando rival TeliaSonera.

The German company lays claim to the colour magenta, having put its towel down on 'RAL 4010 Telemagenta’ as an EU trademark in 2000. Since then, it has had a drawn-out, litigious history of taking issue with anyone who dares encroach on its trademarked patch of the spectrum.

The latest legal volley at the EU courts follows several years of efforts by Deutsche Telekom to browbeat TeliaSonera into surrendering its particular shade of pink.

Deutsche is disgruntled the EU's trademark office didn't reject outright a TeliaSonera challenge against DT's colour trademark '212787', but just closed the case when the Scandinavian rival withdrew its complaint. DT had been holding out for something more definitive to weild in its ongoing case in the Danish courts against TeliaSonera.

But DT isn't the only company with legal protection for its corporate hue.
The EU's trademark database lists hundreds of 'colour' registrations, alongside the usual brand names and logos.

Among the colour registrations, fellow telecoms company Telefonica has lodged for European intellectual property rights on three delicate nuances of turquoise, while O2 has a graded blue trademark.

It's enough to make you see red. That's if your specific shade of fury isn't already trademarked by Deutsche Bahn or Banco Santander...