The team is joined by Guest Kats Rosie Burbidge, Stephen Jones, Mathilde Pavis, and Eibhlin Vardy, and by InternKats Verónica Rodríguez Arguijo, Hayleigh Bosher, Tian Lu and Cecilia Sbrolli.

Monday, 20 November 2017

EMA relocation: and the winner is...

Voting has been taking place today by EU affairs ministers to decide the forum for the relocation of the European Medicines Agency.  The results are in, and the winner is Amsterdam.

The Dutch have beaten off stiff competition from 18 other candidate cities in a complex voting procedure, where each member state had the same input as any other.  Votes were cast by secret ballot, where it is reported that Milan had 12 votes, Amsterdam 9 and Copenhagen 5.  When Copenhagen was knocked out, its votes went mostly to Amsterdam (feels a bit like Eurovision, no?)
At which point Amsterdam and Milan tied at 13-13.  The final decision was taken by pulling a name out of a hat.   Actually.

So how did Amsterdam do in the EMA's relocation staff retention survey in September 2017?  In summary, Amsterdam received a glowing "green" rating (meaning equal or greater than 65% staff retention).  They also did well for location accessibility and access to labor market, medical care and social security.  Detailed results of that survey can be found here.

The UK will say goodbye to 900 people who are employed by the EMA in London.

Congratulations to our Dutch friends - our loss is your gain!

In memoriam: Azzedine Alaïa, the King of Cling (and what it tells us about the fashion industry)


There is probably no word less apt to be associated with this Kat than “fashion.” That does not keep him from taking an interest in the industry and the larger-than-life figures that populate it. In the fashion world, none was more idiosyncratic about his craft than the late Azzedine Alaïa, who passed away on Saturday at the likely age of 77. His improbable rise to the top, his long-life commitment to the “Sinatra doctrine” –he did things “his way”, and what his life story tells us about the fashion industry, merit recollection by the IPKat.

Alaïa was born in Tunisia, the son of a wheat farmer, an unlikely environment from which to climb the ladder of fashion success. How he left the farm, secured a place at the École des Beaux-Arts in Tunis, found a series of skill-enhancing sewing and clothing-related endeavors in Tunis, leading to his relocation to Paris, is testimony that luck is often central in life, but even more so how one takes advantage of such luck.

Once in Paris, he worked at Dior for a brief time, moving to Guy Laroche [Mrs. Kat reminds that this Kat has some Guy Laroche-branded pants in his closet; maybe he does not give himself enough fashion credit?], and Thierry Mugler, until he set up his own workshop or, as called in Paris, an “atelier”, in a smallish flat in Paris. From there he specialized in discretely designing clothes for the elegant and notable (Greta Garbo was said to have come for his services incognito). Over the years, his customers are reported to have included Grace Jones, Tina Turner, Raquel Welch, Janet Jackson, Naomi Campbell, and Shakira.

Alaïa came to the forefront in the 1980’s; he was the master of designing clothes in a clinging style that earned him the sobriquet, The King of Cling. His ability to do so with leather was the stuff of legend. It is said that anyone could recognize an instance of Alaïa-designed, body-con clothing. All of this took place against the backdrop of his unique view as to how clothing design should be carried out. As noted by The New York Times, he—
"… dedicated his life to belief that fashion was more than just garments; to him, they were as much an element of the empowerment of women and a broader cultural conversation."
Stated otherwise, "[h]e used leather and knits to shape and support the body, transforming it into the best version of itself."

His design approach dovetailed with the rise of the supermodel in the early 1980’s, such as Naomi Campbell (he was notably much shorter than they), which in retrospect was, in a consummate example of a double entendre, a perfect fit (another instance of making his own luck). Vogue.com wrote of his design work for these supermodels as follows:
“Seemingly destined to wear and inspire his clothes, these Amazonian-like heroines were custom-built for a bold era of exaggeration and excess. Not only could they handle the curves of the fast-paced times, but could throw some themselves.”
He did all this while remaining his own man. It began with his usual attire, a black, high-necked Chinese garment. In particular, he was known for not playing by industry rules, whereby one is expected to deliver in accordance with a predetermined schedule. This was not for Alaïa, who would only present when he felt he was ready. It is said that he resisted the expectation to produce collections, this despite his commercial relationship with the Prada group (in 2000) and later with the Richemont group (in 2007). Against that background, Wikipedia reports that Catherine Lardeur, the former editor-in-chief of French Marie Claire, is quoted as saying that—
"Fashion is dead. Designers nowadays do not create anything, they only make clothes so people and the press would talk about them. The real money for designers lie within perfumes and handbags. It is all about image. Alaïa remains the king. He is smart enough to not only care about having people talk about him. He only holds fashion shows when he has something to show, on his own time frame. Even when Prada owned him he remained free and did what he wanted to do."
Whether this is a compliment, a criticism or merely an observation about Alaïa is left for the Kat reader to decide. Surely the tension between creation and commercialization lies at the heart of fashion. Whether or not "fashion is dead" would seem to depend on where one places himself or herself on the continuum between these two competing poles. [This Kat recalls a recent meeting with a young designer, who wanted to hear about what she could do to protect her creations. After an hour of conversation, she looked at this Kat with a sense of resignation, stating that "really all I want to do is design."]

In considering Alaïa, one must also ask: should the fashion designer be measured only in terms of his or her ability to get the most sartorially out of his supermodel client? This Kat discussed a while ago the fashioning challenge in meeting the needs of women who are not models ("The illusion of design and design of illusion"). What was suggested was that a different approach to the fashioning craft is called for. This Kat wonders whether Alaïa, as the King of Cling, should, could and/or would ever have taken part in such a conversation.

Photo on upper right by ellenm1 is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 license

Photo on bottom left by Gaz is licensed under GNU Free Documentation license

By Neil Wilkof

Athens Court of Appeal applies CJEU GS Media linking decision and interprets 'profit-making intention' restrictively

Linking after GS Media, available here
Last week, while I was attending the REDA [as Regulation and Enforcement in the Digital Age, not MEP Reda] 2017 Conference in Nicosia (Cyprus), I found out that after Sweden [herehere, and here], Germany [here, here, here, here, and here], the Czech Republic [here], and the UK [here] [have I missed something? Are you aware of other national courts’ decisions on linking? Please let me know!], also a Greek court has had the chance to apply the reasoning of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) in GS Media, C-160/15 [Katposts here].

The Greek decision is extremely interesting because it contains a rather narrow interpretation of what qualifies as profit-making intention. 

As I also discuss more at length here and here, when one reads the GS Media decision it is not self-evident whether the presence of a profit-making intention should be assessed in relation to the specific act of communication at hand, or the broader context in which such act is performed. Although both alternatives may be plausible, consideration of the context in which the relevant link is provided appears more in line with existing CJEU case law, both preceding and following GS Media

However the Athens Court of Appeal opted for the former as the correct interpretation of the profit-making intention of the defendant/link provider.

Katfriend, fellow blogger (iprights.gr), attorney and post-doc researcher Dr Theodoros Chíou (Dr. Theodoros Chíou & Partners, Intellectual Property and Internet Law Office), explains what happened.

Here's what Theodoros writes:

“A new episode on the pan-European saga of hyperlinking cases is added by the decision No 1909/2017 of the Athens Court of Appeal [a summary in English can be found here]. By applying the CJEU GS Media judgment for the first time in Greece, the court ruled on second instance in the livemovies.gr case and offered some insights on the determination of the profit-making character underlying the provision of relevant hyperlinks.

Background

The website www.livemovies.gr (no longer active) was an online inventory for, mainly, Greek TV series episodes, TV programmes and films. The website contained several hyperlinks (deep-links) that directed users to third-party websites and usually (but not always) towards rightholders’ websites or other official web locations (such as official YouTube channels), where the works were freely available for online streaming, without any technical or other restrictions (paywall or others).

The major Greek collecting society in the music sector (AEPI) made several attempts to conclude a licence for the communication to the public of musical works through the website. However, in response to that, the administrator of the website filed an action against AEPI, in order to, among others, have judicially recognized the absence of any licensing obligation for the website’s activity.

The Multi-Person Court of First Instance of Athens (Polimeles Protodikio Athinon, decision no 5249/2014) [already reported and commented on this blog] sided with the administrator’s request, and held that, on the basis of the Svensson decision [Katposts here], the mere provision of hyperlinks to freely available protected works does not constitute a new act of communication to the public (thus: no licence is needed and no copyright infringement is involved), and that is so irrespective of the lawful or unlawful character of the initial communication. 

Both the administrator of the website and AEPI appealed the first instance decision to the Athens Court of Appeal.

livemovies.gr when it was still active
The decision

The Court of Appeal confirmed the conclusion of the appealed decision (and rejected both appeals) and concluded that the posting of hyperlinks would not be an act of communication to the public. As a consequence, the administrator of the website did not had the obligation to obtain licensing and pay the relevant remuneration for such linking activity.

The Court rooted its decision within a different reasoning than the one used in the appealed decision, by making reference not only to CJEU decisions in Svensson and Bestwater [here] but also GS Media (the decisions in Filmspeler [Kartposts here] and Ziggo [Katposts here] had yet to be issued at the time when the Athens Court of Appeal's ruling was published).

The judgment was based on the following findings (the original order of argumentation is kept):

-       No primary liability detected: “As it has been proved, the plaintiff, as administrator of the website, had not stored on a server nor had provided the possibility for users visiting his website to watch audiovisual works that contained musical works […]. The user, after selecting the desired work from the website’s archive, was redirected through a hyperlink to a third-party website, where free access to the work was available.” 
-       The requirement of new publichas not been met: “Moreover, it was not the case of bringing new public to these third-party websites, but about free accessing of users [to the freely available targeted works], without technical or other restrictions.”  
-       No awareness of the unlawfulness of initial communication: As it has been proved, the plaintiff did not know and could not have known whether the third-party websites, to which the user was redirecting to […] had obtained a lawful licence from the respective authors and representative organisations for the transmission of such works
-       No profit-making purpose of hyperlinking:  But even in the very few cases where the websites, to which the user was redirected to through the use of hyperlinks, had not obtained a lawful licence, the plaintiff has not acted with profit-making intention, since it has been established neither any involvement of the plaintiff in these third-party websites nor reception of any profits generated from the unauthorised transmission of protected works.

The homepage of livemovies.gr today
Comment

A prima facie observation that should be underlined is the inversion of the GS Media assessment criteria. In fact, the court examined the knowledge criterion first and then the for-profit character underlying the provision of hyperlinks. However, according to the GS Media judgment, the pursuit of financial gain is the first determination that has to be made, before assessing the knowledge factor.

The most interesting part of the decision resides in the interpretation of the profit-making character. Indeed, the Court seems to ascertain the pursuit of financial gain in the context of hyperlinking in two cases: a) where the hyperlink provider is involved (under a scheme whatsoever) in the targeted transmission and b) where the hyperlink provider makes profit that derives from the unauthorized transmission of works per se.

According to this approach, a distinction should be made between, on the one hand, the profits made by the hyperlink provider that are connected to the (unauthorized) retransmission of targeted works and, on the other hand, the profits generated from the provision of hyperlinks as such, within the framework of the operation of the website. 

As a consequence, the criterion of the pursuit of financial gain by the linker, as introduced by the GS Media decision, should be satisfied only in the former case and not in the latter. 

This means, among others, that the mere lucrative character of a website that provides hyperlinks (e.g. because of ad revenues) would not amount to a pursuit of financial gain.

This is definitely a restrictive interpretation of the GS Media ruling, especially if one takes into account the circumstances of the case, where the main objective of the website was to provide hyperlinks, while several advertisements banners figured therein.”

Sunday, 19 November 2017

Sunday Surprises

The Online content regulation at the crossroads of automation and injunctions: the way forward event is taking place on 20 November 2017 at the University of Southampton. The speakers are Dr. Micheál Ó Floinn, Dr. Sophie Stalla-Bourdillon, Dr. Eleonora Rosati, Dr. Luke McDonagh and Karmen Turk. Among other topics, it will discuss the international challenges regarding online enforcement, illegal content and human rights, online courts, and intermediary IP injunctions. More details, here.

A kitten in a box
The FAST (Federation Against Software Theft) Legal Advisory Group Meeting will take place on 28 November 2017 at the Palace of Westminster in London. The theme of the meeting is Copyright enforcement and the law: two subjects that will not go away quietly. The event is hosted by The Right Honourable Earl of Erroll and will have Dai Davis, Kieron Sharp, and Eleonora Rosati as speakers. It will consider the criminalization of copyright law, illicit streaming and the legal implications for makers and users of Kodi boxes. More information, here.

IP/IT Law Lecturer vacancy. The Faculty of Law of the University of Brussels is looking for an Adjunct Lecturer in International Law of IP/IT and Data Protection for the LL.M. in the International Business Law program. The position involves two teaching periods and thesis supervision. Applicants should hold a Ph.D. in Law and demonstrate outstanding teaching competency through relevant working experience and publications. Apply before 1 December 2017 by sending a cover letter and CV to the Academic Coordinator of the program (pmeisel@ulb.ac.be). More information, here.

Internship at the European Parliament. Marietje Schaake, member of the European Parliament Foreign Affairs, Trade, and Tech, is looking for an intern to start on 29 January 2018. Applicants should have good English (both spoken and written) and be a student at the end of the BA or at the beginning of an MA program, preferably in the field of foreign affairs, international trade or digital issues. The position will last five months. Apply before 11 December 2017 at 12:00 by sending a cover letter and CV in one pdf file to marietje.schaake@europarl.europa.eu. More details, here.

Image credits: Matjaž Skrinar

Friday, 17 November 2017

Birss J in Accord v Research Corporation Technologies attempts to cut the red tape on the right to claim priority

The AmeriKat reaching for an earlier priority date
Oh, priority.  You very important, but often (very) dull beauty.  For patent litigators, we (and our experts) step back in time to the priority date - often the filing date of the application - to assess validity.  However, applicants can claim an earlier priority date than the date of filing.  This is called the "right of priority".  To do so, certain conditions have to be satisfied, but if you meet them you can claim an earlier priority date, with the benefit that you kick out a bunch of often unhelpful later dated prior art. So if you can maintain priority - great - but if you lose it - hold on tight.  The Patents Court has been wrestling with priority in judgments, seemingly more frequently lately (although, it may be that we are just paying more attention).  Tristan Sherliker (Bird & Bird) reports on a recent decision of Mr Justice Birss in Accord Healthcare Ltd v Research Corporation Technologies Inc [2017] EWHC 2711 on the issue.  Over to Tristan:

"Despite the formal processes behind it, IP is a pretty forgiving area of law. The English Chancery courts have existed for centuries specifically to avoid the bureaucracy and inequity found in other parts of the judicial system and, true to form today, they are not known for letting red tape get in the way of a good monopoly right. So what then of the forgotten child of patent law, the right to claim priority? A mere formality, it risks undermining the validity of an entire patent or patent family. So can we cut the red tape and make it good in equity? Finally we have an answer.

The problem

The position following Edwards v Cook [2009] FSR 27 is this: When an applicant claims priority from a patent filed by a third party they must, at the time of their patent filing, own the substantive right to make that priority claim. The red tape comes in partly because nobody except patent lawyers cares about this right, but significantly also because there’s no takesy backsies: you can’t make good on it afterwards by subsequently acquiring the rights. Either you have the substantive right at the relevant date, or you’ve lost the priority claim.

Since inventors rarely sit silently for a year after their initial filing, loss of priority claim normally brings in a wealth of new prior art leading to the patent’s invalidity. This bites most often (but not always) when an employer is claiming rights from the invention of their employee, where the employee was the original applicant. It is especially common where the priority document is a patent filing (or provisional filing) in the USA, where the practice was a baited trap for priority applicants: it used to be that only the inventors themselves could apply for patents.

It’s a quick fix to clear the problem:  it is now well understood by those who care about it that a short assignment document recording a transfer of rights is a good plan, complying with any additional national laws that apply.  Unfortunately, though, patent law is retrospective and this whole issue wasn’t really on anyone’s radar until 2010 when Edwards v Cook was confirmed on appeal. I also understand that US practice continued baiting the same trap until 2012. So bearing in mind the duration of patent protection, the issue is likely to keep popping up for another decade or more before we clear the backlog and may still continue in future.

In the balance between red tape and equity, who will win out?

Cliffhanger: Gilead

The Court of Appeal left us a cliffhanger on this point last year in Idenix v Gilead [2016] EWCA Civ 1089 (see IPKat post here) where it was alleged that a patent was invalid over its own priority document, for anticipation. The reason? That’s right – it was argued that there was a mistake when assigning the substantive priority right.

It was discussed obiter whether the assignment had to be made good in formal law, or whether a simple equitable transfer could be implied to cure the red tape. This was not immediately clear because the point arises from the Paris Convention, which may or may not permit of equity. Answering the points argued, Kitchin LJ (who sat at first instance in Edwards v Cook) gave a “provisional view” that the equity was good enough; and that the Paris Convention leaves the mechanism for transfer of title to the relevant national law. However, he stopped short of making any finding of substance on this, saying:
“nevertheless, it emerged during argument that there may be other materials and decisions which bear on this issue and to which our attention has not been drawn. Accordingly… it seems to me that it is better left to be decided in another case.”
After that cliffhanger, the next instalment is now here, and the questions can be resolved.

The resolution?

For the patent in suit in Accord Healthcare Ltd v Research Corporation Technologies Inc , there was a valid assignment of the relevant rights in 1997, the month before the claim to priority was made. On its face therefore, the rights were assigned.

Normally the right to claim priority analysis would stop there, but an interesting argument was run by the claimant, Accord. They said that the document was limited to an assignment of the bare legal right; and that the equitable right to the invention was owned by another entity – in this case, the University of Houston. The “substantive” right, Accord said, was the equitable right and not the mere legal title. The patent was therefore invalid over its own priority document, which of course disclosed the same invention.

Breaking down not one but two formalistic barriers, Birrs J both agreed and disagreed with Accord. He held that the term “substantive title” in the case law did indeed refer to the division between legal and equitable title, saying:
“When the cases refer to the applicant holding the substantive right and title to the invention, they are referring to this legal/equitable distinction.  
“In my judgment Accord is right in law that following from those principles, a person who at the relevant time and under the relevant applicable law, acquired only the bare legal title to an invention and not the equitable title, when the equitable title is held by another, does not then hold the substantive right and title to the claim to priority.” 
However, on the facts he found that the problem had been overcome: under the US laws governing the rights of a bona fide purchaser for value (35 USC §261) and taking into account the circumstances at the time, on those facts the title had passed and the priority claim was still valid.

Leaving it open for a sequel

True to type, the (Chancery) judge found a way to make things right and avoid the red tape. He was however unsatisfied with the way of things, and said as much, giving two suggestions as to how the higher courts might address the matter:
1. Institute a sui generis law for priority rights in Paris Convention countries equally, regardless of whether those states recognise a legal/equitable distinction. In this proposal, flaws in the title still could not be fixed retrospectively. However, the judge acknowledged that this suggestion does not sit happily with the equitable/legal distinctions made in the later cases following Edwards v Cook
    2. Alternatively, another suggestion was to apply the same approach and the same applicable law to the priority claim as applies to ownership of the invention and the right to the patent. In a case in which there is some doubt about the claimant’s title to the patent itself, the suggestion is that title has to be perfected by the judgment of the court – for example, ensuring that the legal owner must be joined to the proceedings (see Baxter v NPB [1998] RPC 250). For this suggestion, the judge commented that "[t]he moment the title to the patent matters is judgment. In this case the moment the priority claim matters could be said to be the judgment." It therefore seems that this suggestion may permit the patentee to repair a position after the event if to do so would be equitable, so long as done before judgment.  
    The judge offered these proposals as mere suggestions - he was clear that in coming to his decision he applied the law as already settled (albeit with some new explanation of matters not previously explicit). Yet given his dissatisfaction, perhaps things are not quite so settled yet, and we might find more interesting developments if this goes through to an appeal."

    Thursday, 16 November 2017

    Speech from European Judges Forum: But Sir Robin, let's be frank, we will put (just to be short), in Milan the Central Court...

    The AmeriKat enjoying the closing lines of
    Mario's speech at the European Judges
    Forum in Venice
    Every year, usually in October, a gaggle (or is it a judgment) of patent judges amass in San Servolo (Venice) at the European Judges Forum where they discuss the latest goings-on in European patent law and practice.  San Servolo is a secluded island close to Venice, but not easily connected to the city (making it difficult for anyone to escape).  Nobles who were declared to be mentally unsound resided here, away from the rules and forms of Venice.  It is therefore the natural location to to hold a forum where patent judges and lawyers can exchange ideas and experiences.  Some say that the acknowledgement that European patent judges give to decisions of their fellow European judges stem from this forum.

    This, the 12th year of the conference, saw 35 judges of 15 nations (Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom) pull together.  They were joined by 31 European lawyers and seven officers of the EPO.  This year, the forum debated SEP and FRAND, discretion on injunctive relief under the UPC, case law on damages and an update on the UPC from Alexander Ramsay.  The focus of the forum was a mock trial decided by judges from the Netherlands, Sweden, Italy and Germany.

    At the Forum dinner, this time held in the city of Venice,  Mario Franzosi (Franzosi Dal Negro Setti) delivered a wonderful speech  - partly in English, partly in the langue d’ oil - with contributions from Judges Marina Tavassi, Gabriella Muscolo, Klaus Grabinski and Sir Robin Jacob.  The speech was too good not to share with the IPKat readers (for which the AmeriKat thanks Mario and his contributors).

    So, now imagine you are in the wonderful city of Venice, dining by candlelight (with a bunch of patent lawyers) and Mario stands up....:
    "Ladies and gentlemen.  
    After Brexit, we have to decide which language to use. Some European countries have English, but not as the first language.

    Charles the fifth said that there are four languages to consider. “I speak – he said – Spanish to God, French to men, Italian to my lovers, and German to my horses”. What to choose among these four?

    The problem of language is serious. For instance, Robert van Peursem wrote a beautiful report on Equivalents, but unfortunately in Dutch.
      Robert, do you have a translation in one of these four languages? (Van Peursem answers: Yes, German).   
    So Robert, please send it to me and I will give it to my horse. Better, you may send it directly to horse@franzosi.com. 
    I think the most appropriate (to stay closer to our evicted British friends) would be Anglo-Norman, a dialect of the langue d'oïl, that was spoken in Normandy in 1066. 
    There is a poem that wonderfully describes our situation:
    Halt sunt li pui e tenebrus e grant, 
    Li val parfunt e les ewes curant. 
    Sunent cil graisle e derere e devant 
    E tuit rachatent encuntre l’olifant.
    (High are the mountains, dark and majestic;deep are the valleys and the waters running. Sounds are heard here and there, but the Oliphant of Angela Merkel answers to all of them). 
    Here we are, at a turning point of our enterprise to set up a truly European patent judicial system. When judge Scuffi had the idea (to which I most humbly participated) of creating a forum for European judges, so that they could make their systems converging, we thought that the establishment of a Unified Patent Court would had been the crowning of this initiative, but also the end. Therefore, we considered the attainment of the UPC with mixed feeling, as an exaltation, but possibly a termination, of our Venetian venture. I am happy to say that the mission of our Venetian enterprise, as a preparation of a future European patent court, will continue for decades and decades.

    But first: do we really need a unified patent court? It was said (by a most experienced authority) that in America 10% of the patents granted are litigated; while in Europe 2 out of 1000. Therefore, on the basis of this authoritative data we can make a simple calculation. According to these numbers, that I do not dare to question, in America there are about 30,000/40,000 patent cases every year. Since the average cost of a patent case is (AIPLA data) 5 million dollars per party, namely 10 million dollars, patent attorneys receive about 300 billion dollars. This is a little more than the gross national product of Croatia, Slovenia and Czech Republic combined. I esteem an additional number of 500.000 attorneys is needed in America. This is why I personally got the green card. Nevertheless, America still needs 499.999 attorneys.

    By contrast, it is said, in Europe only two patents per thousand are litigated. This means that in Europe there are about 140 patent cases per year, which is the number of patent cases in Milan. Therefore, it is clear to me that we do not need the UPC, since everything is dealt with in the Court of Milan. I would suggest to pack up and go home.

    Ladies and gentlemen. I will handle a subject where probable truth will hardly gain assent. I know that the bosom of the earth (the humble soil here corn grows together with weeds), is the proper ground of illustrious men, the most clever and proud, and of those who cultivate philosophy without enervating the mind. I have the earth in high consideration. Therefore, if the UPC does not go to the sky and is interred, instead, in the earth, then it will have the destiny of even the most illustrious men.
     
    In the soil, either the spirit is annihilated, and has no sensation of anything, or death is a certain change of status, a passage to a better status. I believe so, and I believe the UPC will live with Orpheus and Musaeus, with Hesiod and Homer: most noble companions. It will live with Ajax, the son of Telamon and all the others that had lived a life of honor, and have died of an unjust sentence. If so, the UPC will remain a bodiless dream of nature, living in a more dignified and noble ether. I am sure the UPC will discuss with Ajax of the difference between Kort geding, Einstweilige Verfuegung, Procedure en Référé, Anton Pillar Order, Misure Provvisorie.

    Which status is better, either to drag a useless life of useless preparation, or live in the world of the dead, with Orpheus and Homer, is unknown to everyone but God.

    Ladies and gentlemen. We have undertaken a mission for which we had no allies but our good will and our valor. Our cause was and is just. Even if our resources are limited, our will is unconquered. Nothing is lost, apart from our patience. As it is said in the Chanson de Roland:
    Li empereres chevalchet ireement 
    E li Franceis curuçus e dolent; 
    N’i ad celoi n’i plurt e se dement,
    E prient Deu qu’il guarisset Rollant
    (Angela Merkel rides furiously, and the French army sad and worried, and everybody cries and loses head, and ask God to save the UPC). 
    For the UPC there is a sumptuous variety of meditation, something that compels the strangers’ admiration, and regret. We have counted in the course of the years several variations of humor in relation to the system: each which a simple version and with a complex version. There are several versions of the Rules of Procedure: eighteen, if I correctly remember, or are they eighty? I think it will make the fortune of the man who really wants to investigate the human mind.
    Josque il vengent el camp cumunement   
    Ensembl’ od lui i ferrunt veirement.  
    De ço qui calt ? car ne lur valt nient.  
    Demurent trop, n’i poedent estre a tens. 
    (At the battlefield, they will fight furiously. But all this is vain, all is useless. Too much they delayed: they cannot arrive on time. China and India are pressing.)

    Ladies and gentlemen. Patent people are by nature patient and forbearing. Do not despair, also because you do not know how the world changes. You have no vision of the future, and do not even know what the weather is going to be.

    If one could look into the seeds of time  And say which grain will grow and which will not,
    There is no substitute for wisdom, and the second best after wisdom is silence. 
    Therefore, I take a seat and do not utter further words. But first, let me recite a sonnet that I have written when travelling on the vaporetto tonight, going from Venice main island to San Servolo (a small island, the place of the hospital – in the old good time- for insane persons, but only of noble descent) and that I have finished only a few moments ago. It was written with the help of judge Marina Tavassi, President of the Court of Appeals of Milan; Gabriella Muscolo, of the Italian Competition Authority; Robin Jacob, who you know well; Klaus Grabinski, of the German Bundesgerichtshof (somehow unhappy with the initial consideration of the German language by Charles the Fifth, but cooperative, nevertheless). Here is the result of our brains:
    Noble Britain, proud and wise  
    Do not trade your life with dice  
    Take it easy, take a sit
    And don’t do, don’t do Brexit. 

    No, my Britain wake you up  
    Stay with us, and raise the cup.  
    Take it easy, take a sit  
    And don’t do, don’t do Brexit.   

    Choose Venezia, and not May  
    It’s not time to run away  
    Like brave soldiers, close the rank.

    But Sir Robin, let’s be frank  
    We will put (just to be short) 
    In Milan the Central Court. "

    Subscribe to the IPKat's posts by email here

    Just pop your email address into the box and click 'Subscribe':