Fight over a cats basket

Copyright does not only apply to art with the capital A. Also daily used articles are covered by its protection. However, the product (a work) must be an original creation. In short, creative choices have to be made. If another company launches a very similar product, this can be a copyright infringement.

A Dutch wholesaler creates a special kind of cat basket. A basket made of straw in the shape of a teepee. Another Dutch company launches a virtually identical basket, the Boony basket. According to Boony, that is no problem, because a pet basket cannot be protected by copyright. The court disagrees. Never before have there been cat baskets in a teepee shape made out of straw. This basket therefore is a copyrighted work. Both the original and later Boony basket have a teepee shape, are made of rattan and the color is identical. This makes the overall impression the same. Consequence: infringement, a sales ban and a product recall (in addition to the paying legal costs of claimant, amounting to almost € 13,000). Source image: LegalTree


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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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