News & Cases from China: December 2018

三星诉华为4G通信标准必要专利侵权案开庭

 12月12日,北京知识产权法院不公开开庭审理了原告三星株式会社诉被告华为公司、被告亨通达公司侵害发明专利权纠纷一案。

本案与4G标准必要专利相关,涉及涉案专利是否属于标准必要专利、双方在许可谈判中是否存在过错、颁发禁令的适用规则等问题。华为与三星的专利纠纷由来已久。此前,针对本案已经召开了超过二十个工作日的庭前会议。此次庭审持续一整天,北京知识产权法院将择期作出判决。

 Samsung Sues Huawei for 4G SEP Infringement

 This SEP infringement case, Samsung Co., Ltd v Huawei Co., Ltd and Heng Tongda Co., Ltd, the latest in a series of disputes between Huawei and Samsung, involved more than 20 working days of pre-court meetings before a one day hearing in camera before the Beijing Intellectual Property Court on 12 December.

The case related to Samsung’s 4G SEP (Standard-Essential Patents) and raised issues in relation to SEPs, including whether Samsung’s patent was an SEP and whether the parties had engaged in wrongdoing in the process of negotiations, as well issues relating to the rules for issuing injunctions.

The Court’s judgment is expected soon.

法院判决光明牛奶标注 85℃”不构成侵权

12月14日,上海知产法院就上诉人光明公司与被上诉人美食达人公司侵害商标权纠纷案作出二审判决,驳回美食达人公司一审全部诉讼请求。

上海知产法院认为,美食达人公司将构成温度标准表达方式的“85℃”的各元素适用不同字体进行不同排列后,客观上增强了该标识的显著性而获得注册,但也限制了其受保护的范围。光明公司在商品外包装上使用标识“85℃”,并配以“85℃巴氏杀菌乳新鲜说”等文字,仅是为了向相关公众说明巴氏杀菌技术的工艺特征。另外,美食达人公司从未生产过被控侵权商品(牛奶),也未在牛奶商品上使用过涉案商标。相关公众也自然会认为“85℃”是光明公司采用的巴氏杀菌技术的温度,而不会产生与美食达人公司有关的混淆和误认。

因此,上海知产法院认为,光明公司在涉案被控侵权商品上使用被控侵权标识的行为,属于对温度标识的正当、合理使用,未造成相关公众的混淆和误认,不构成对美食达人公司涉案注册商标专用权的侵害。

Court Upholds Bright Dairy’s Appeal in relation to Infringement of Trademark ‘85°C’

On 14 December, the Shanghai Intellectual Property Court issued a second-instance judgment in the trademark infringement action brought by Gourmet Master Co. Ltd, alleging infringement of its ‘85°C’ trademark.  Gourmet Master had succeeded at first instance.  Bright Dairy had appealed. 

The Court held that the registered trademark  ‘85°C’ was an indication of temperature measurement and that Bright Dairy had used the term on its dairy product packaging to indicate characteristics of the product.  Given that, and the fact that Gourmet Master had never made any dairy products, members of the public would not be likely to be confused.  They would see the term as referring to a characteristic of the product.

The Court concluded that Bright Dairy’s behavior amounted to fair use, and that Bright Dairy had not infringed Gourmet Master’s registered trademark.

年份酒存在虚假宣传 消费者告商贸公司获退赔款278

2013年1月2日,张先生与被告北京丰盈兆业商贸有限公司签订《购买茅台酒》合同,购买了一批包括年份15年、30年的“茅台白金酒”,总价值为697,496元。2016年,张先生认为年份15年、30年存在虚假宣传误导消费者以及欺诈消费者的行为,以此向法院提起诉讼,提出了“退一赔三“诉求。

一审法院于2016年8月1日作出判决。法院认为,贵州茅台酒厂(集团)保健酒业有限公司作为生产厂家,成立于2005年3月,从时间上推断,该公司不可能于2013年1月生产出窖藏15年以上的酒类产品,判决丰盈公司退还张先生购酒款697,000元,丰盈公司支付张先生赔偿金2,091,000元。

2017年,丰盈公司将北京白金至尊酒业有限公司(简称白金至尊公司),以及茅台保健酒业告上法庭,请求判定被告赔偿2,788,000元以及利息、律师费等其他损失。

法院一审判决,白金至尊公司于本判决生效后七日内向原告丰盈公司支付赔偿款2,091,000元及其他损失309,104元,茅台保健酒业对白金至尊公司上述债务承担连带责任。

一审判决后,白金至尊公司以及茅台保健酒业上诉,2018年8月15日,二审法院判决白金至尊酒业向丰盈公司支付赔偿款1,548,048元及其他损失309,104元,茅台保健酒业对丰盈公司上述债务承担连带责任。

Drinks Manufacturers Ordered to Refund and Compensate RMB 2.78 Million (approx.. US$ 413,781) for False Marketing

This case related to the sale of liquor marked ‘Maotal Baijin Liquor 15 Years’ and ‘Maotal Baijin Liquor 30 Years’.  On appeal, the Court held that the labeling constituted a false representation as to the age of the liquor, and was likely to mislead consumers. 

The appellants, Beijing Baijin Zhizun Winery Industry Co. Ltd (Baijin Company) and Guizhou Maotal were found liable for false marketing.  Baijin Company was ordered to pay compensation of RMB 1,548.045 (approx. US$ 229,753) and other losses amounting to RMB 309,104 (approx.. US$ 45,875).  Guizhou Maotal was held jointly and severally liable.

滴滴被指利用市场优势地位不当得利等33项问题

 11月28日上午,交通运输部会同中央网信办、公安部、国家市场监督管理总局等部门,通报了网约车顺风车安全专项检查工作的有关情况。

检查发现,滴滴公司存在7方面33项问题,包括:涉嫌排除限制竞争行为和发布违法广告等行为、顺风车产品存在重大安全隐患、互联网信息安全存在风险隐患等。

联合检查组还分别向首汽约车、神州专车、易到用车、美团打车、曹操专车、高德、嘀嗒出行等7家网约车、顺风车平台公司反馈了检查情况和相关问题清单,提出了整改要求,并要求在两周内制定完成整改方案和具体措施。

Didi, China’s ride-hailing giant, Suspected of Obtaining Unjust Enrichment by Taking Advantage of Market Dominance

On the 28 November 2018, the Ministry of Transport, together with the Cyberspace Administration of China, the Ministry of Public Security, the State Administration for Market Regulation and other departments, notified the result of a safety inspection of China’s online car-hailing services

It identified 33 problems in seven areas of Didi’s operation, including: alleged exclusion or restriction of competition and release of illegal advertisements, major safety hazards in relation to its ride sharing products, and the risk of internet information security.

The joint inspection team also reported the inspection outcome in relation to seven online car-hailing platforms, including the Shouqi Limousine & chauffeur, UCAR, Yong Che, Meituan, Cao Cao, Amap, and Dida. A list of related issues and proposed rectification requirements were published.  These platforms were required to complete the rectification plan within two weeks.

You can see the November edition here.