Copyrights Netherlands - Protection of a concept / format

It is not possible to protect an idea, however, it is possible to protect the idea in its realized form. Because copyright is obtained automatically, it is sometimes unclear which part of an idea / format is protected. Knowing what part of a product is or is not protected may be vital if you intend to base your own products on someone else’s.  

BuurtKadoos sends new residents a box of vouchers from various companies. This way companies can easily introduce themselves to new residents. One of the suppliers discontinues their work with BuurtKadoos and introduces its own (similar) box.
Is this allowed, because a box of cards is after all a common marketing tool? The judge does not agree. He argues that the idea behind BuurtKadoos is a very detailed concept. The concept is realized in a certain way (maps in color, by category, with map and a hole), which leaves other options open. However, not only the box, but the whole concept around it is copyrighted. The defendant copied not only the look of Buurtkadoos, but also its visual elements. Both formats have therefore the same overall impression. Result: infringement.


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MENTOS has been selling chewing gum under the name MENTOS PURE FRESH for several years. In order to protect her rights MENTOS has registered the following trademarks: the logo MENTOS PURE FRESH, the logo MENTOS PURE FRESH 3 and a figurative depiction of the word PURE. Defendant sells chewing gum under the trademark DENTYNE PURE and has registered its logo as a trademark. Infringement or not?
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