By John Wilks
This year’s conference of Marques, the European brand owners’ association, took place in the European Union’s most troubled and ancient capital, Athens, under the lamentably resonant strapline “Sign of the Times”. Among the many interesting topics shoe-horned under this banner, one theme seemed to keep resurfacing: the challenge of locating internet infringers.
This is by no means a new problem: IP infringers have for obvious reasons always sought to cover their tracks. But the advent and continuing expansion of the internet and social media have dramatically increased the scope for anonymous infringements from cyberspace. The impending arrival of over 1,000 new gTLDs- including many for common generic terms, threatens to further expand the possibility for anonymous infringement.