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Posted: February 2, 2012 in Uncategorized

P111

Thursday morning exercise done!

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Pod Legal Lawyer Jamie White

Pod Legal Solicitor Director Jamie White argued that the ‘Nuckin Futs’ trade mark is not offensive. Picture: Supplied Source: news.com.au

A SNACK called Nuckin Futs will go on sale after a lawyer’s successful argument that the word “f…” is a normal part of Australian speech and so cannot be deemed offensive under trademark rules.

The trademark application for “Nuckin Futs” was at first rejected by the register as being scandalous and offensive due to its similarity to the phrase “f…ing nuts”.

The Trade Marks Examiner ruled that “Nuckin Futs” was an “obvious spoonerism” and deemed it ineligible for registration under section 42 of the Trade Marks Act.

Under the law such terms must be rejected if likely to be regarded as shameful, offensive or shocking to the ordinary person.

But solicitor Jamie White, Director of law firm Pod Legal, who submitted the application on behalf of his Gold Coast client, argued that “Nuckin Futs” was not offensive because it was commonplace in everyday Australian language.

In a five-page legal document, seen by news.com.au, which catalogues the history of controversial product names, Mr White argued the words “f…” or “f…ing” were “now part of the universal discourse of the ordinary Australian”.

“We submit that whilst there may be a mere sentimental objection or mere distaste to NUCKIN FUTS, this is not a sufficient ground for rejection of the Trade Mark, particularly since a substantial number of people would not find the words shocking,” the submission to the Examiner says.

Mr White told news.com.au: “Over the passage of time, certain words which may have caused major offence in earlier times would now be acceptable as trade marks in certain markets, namely, the Australian market.”

Almost a year after the initial application was rejected, the trademark examiner has agreed to accept the “Nuckin Futs” trademark – on the condition that the owner would not market it to kids.

Mr White assured the Examiner that the product, mostly comprising of edible nuts, would not be marketed to children as his client only intended to sell it in pubs, nightclubs and other entertainment venues.

The trade mark is due for registration in April 2012.

With great curiosity I’ve been following the extradition battle of Mr. Julian Assange, including everything directly/indirectly related to it. Mr. Assange’s attempt to affect the general opinion about the extradition proceeding he is made subject to is not bordering on surreal anymore. This is because it is surreal.

It appears that Mr. Assange has orchestrated a massive campaign, which is split into two overlapping paths – both lacking any merit. The first one concentrates on the alleged flaws in the extradition proceeding that being the mechanism of the European Arrest Warrant (“EAW”). The second one brings up the alleged “conspiracy” behind the request to get him to face rape allegations in Sweden.


1st PATH

Mr. Assanges publicity attack against EAW appears to be mainly based on the fact that he is not “charged of anything” per se. Mr. Assange’s error of judgment is probably in that he is interpreting “charged” under the laws of UK. This is a moot point due to the differences in legal systems within Europe. Mr. Assange must be very well aware of this and so must, at least, all the lawyers supporting him.

Mr. Assange also seem to claim that there is something “wrong” in an extradition mechanism in which the courts of the requested country cannot review the merits of the case presented by the requesting country. Again, Mr. Assange’s argument is empty and is not supported by single authority. Extradition is not about innocence or guilt. The merits of the case are for the requesting country and its courts to determine. Very recently, the Court of Appeals (2nd circuit) in the USA stated among others, “It is not the business of our courts to assume the responsibility for supervising the integrity of the judicial system of another sovereign nation. Such an assumption would directly conflict with the principle of comity upon which extradition is based.” (citing Jhirad, 536 F.2d at 484–85) and “… U.S. courts are strongly discouraged from reviewing whether the demanding country has complied with its own law and, indeed, it is error to do so except to the limited extent necessary to ensure compliance with the applicable extradition treaty …” Even though the case cited is not directly a binding authority for Mr. Assange’s process, some analogy (which goes against him) can be drawn from it to his position.


2nd Path

Secondly and unsurprisingly, there is zero evidence of the alleged “conspiracy”. For some unexplained reason it has always been part of Mr. Assange’s defense that the allegations of rape are the first step in a mysterious “conspiracy” steered by some 3-letter American organization which first wants to get him to Sweden. Mr. Assange’s imaginary theory continues that it would then somehow be very easy to get him to America, where in turn he would then be charged, tried and even face the death penalty. This “conspiracy” is a fantasy not born in a rationally thinking brain. While it might be quicker to get someone extradited from Sweden than from UK (due to the differences in the legal systems), it cannot be said that the difference is that great that it would (rationally thinking) make any sense to create the alleged very complex conspiracy with fake allegations of rape and fake EAW’s issued by the Swedish prosecutor.

What the public would like to know is: who is paying for the legal teams fighting for Mr. Assange? Could it be Wikileaks? If yes, why?

Merry Christmas

Posted: December 24, 2011 in Uncategorized
On 19.12.2011 an article was published in Sydney Morning Herald, which refers to an open letter directed to the Australian Foreign Affairs Minister Mr. Kevin Rudd. It appears that the Minister is being urged to "help" alleged rapist and sexual predator Mr. Julian Assange currently on bail in the UK, where he is waiting to be extradited to Sweden.

In the letter, signed by among others numerous lawyers, concerns are being expressed by stating that "… should Mr Assange be placed in Swedish custody, he will be subject to the process of "temporary surrender", enabling his removal to the United States without the appropriate legal processes that accompany normal extradition cases …"

This "concern" is unfounded, lacks any substance and is completely without merit. The relevant Article VI of the supplement to the Treaty for extradition between the USA and Sweden which is applied in any extradition between Sweden and the USA reads as follows:

"If the extradition request is granted in the case of a person who is being prosecuted or is serving a sentence in the territory of the requested State for a different offense/ the requested State may:

b) temporarily surrender the person sought to the requesting State for the purpose of prosecution* The person so surrendered shall be kept in custody while in the requesting State and shall be returned to the requested State after the conclusion of the proceedings against that person in accordance with conditions to be determined by mutual agreement of the Contracting States."

As anybody (in particular lawyers who went on to sign the above mentioned letter) can see, the so called temporary surrender does not enable Mr. Assange's removal "… to the United States without the appropriate legal processes that accompany normal extradition cases …" Before temporary surrender can even be asked it requires (i) an extradition request and (ii) a decision granting that extradition. It is not the case, as the letter in question appears to suggest, that with the use of temporary surrender normal procedures could be bypassed. In addition, before that extradition request from Sweden to the USA could be granted, it would require consent from the UK in accordance with Article 15 of the European Convention on extradition concerning so called re-extradition to a third state. 

This big publicity campaign for Mr. Assange raises some further thoughts to consider. It turns out, that one could easily draw conclusions that Australia is steered by some kind of double-standards in relation to extradition matters. The above mentioned concerns for Mr. Assange were raised simply because the question is about an Australian citizen subject to extradition proceedings overseas. At the same time, in fact since 2005, an American citizen has been in custody in Australia pursuant to an extradition proceeding to the USA. To cut the story short, in this case Australian authorities together with Dutch and Americans wanted to ensure that the said American individual could be extradited to the USA. As it happened, this American was originally arrested in Holland. However, the Dutch prosecutor advised that his extradition could not be granted to the USA due to statute of limitations. After this, Australian, Dutch and American authorities made an agreement that if he was to be extradited first to Australia, Australia would then extradite him to the USA – assuming, of course, that Holland would grant this re-extradition. Needless to say, Holland granted re-extradition and Australia is happy to extradite him. The case continues.
Optrix HD Sport Mount

 

Remember when you were thinking you really wish you could film your bicycle courier route so you can watch it again from home to see if you can improve your delivery time? Have at it. Optrix has unveiled the weatherproof HD Sport Mount, which turns your iPhone 4, 4S and iPod touch into an action sports camera. Combined with the iPhone 4S image stabilizing capabilities, Optrix captures “… stunning video in all environments possible, from extreme racing to a relaxing day at the pool.”

And maybe even extreme racing in the pool, if that’s your thing.

Tough enough for military use, Optrix’s patented design securely houses the iPhone 4 or iPod Touch while allowing users easy access to its interface, enabling instant playback, video editing or even uploading.  In addition, the ability to see a full-screen image of the framed shot, coupled with its one-hand quick release design makes adjusting shooting angles fast and painless, eliminating the out of frame videos that plague current market options.

Perfect for any sport, including snowboarding, skateboarding, mountain biking, racing, and more, the HD Sport Mount comes with a variety of base mounts that safely and securely adhere to any surface.  Spill, splash, bump and drop proof, the casing is made of high quality, military grade materials utilizing ultrasonic welds and silicon gaskets designed to keep moisture and dirt at bay.

Optrix HD Sport Mount

 

The Optrix HD Sport Mount for iPhone 4, iPhone 4S and iPod Touch can now be pre-ordered for $79.99. Optrix will be releasing accompanying video recording apps that will measure lay speed, g-force, lap-time and more right onto the videos.

Product [HD Sport Mount.

Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson should be hawking headphones. That’s why he’s sitting in the mixing booth at Engine Room Audio in Lower Manhattan at 9:40 a.m. Instead, though, the Jamaica, Queens-bred rapper is talking about his next Silicon Valley investments–and Sean Parker.

“I think Sean Parker damaged the music business with Napster,” Jackson says. “Now he’s trying to fix it.”

In a charcoal gray suit with a wine-red handkerchief, Jackson looks more Gordon Gekko than chart-topping rockstar. Then again, what’s a modern rock star if not a branding machine. For 50’s part, he’s moved on from hit singles to hit investments. Jackson runs his own label under Interscope Records; he’s built successful sneaker and clothing lines; he’s starred in movies and video games; and he’s injected capital in everything from 3-D glasses startups to energy drink companies. In 2007, an early investment in Vitamin Water-maker Glacéau proved prescient when Coca-Cola bought the company for $4.1 billion, an acquisition that earned 50 Cent a reported $100 million. Today, he’s technically here to promote his next business venture, SMS Audio, makers of high-end headphones. “The category is huge,” he says. “These headphones are definitely going to be the biggest stocking stuffer.”

But first, let’s talk about Spotify. Jackson has invested mainly in physical products so far–vitamin drinks, fashion, headphones. But he’s looking to invest in tech startups. “I have some ideas now,” he says. “I don’t want to discuss the deal until the papers get signed because everyone else will get excited–and then we get scattered.”

When pressed, Jackson flashes a knowing grin. I ask him whether he’s investing in a small music-related startup. “Well, they’re really well established companies that I’ll end up being involved in,” he says. Like Spotify? “Those are the kinds of guys I want to hang out with, down there in Silicon Valley,” Jackson answers coyly. He says he knows Parker but declines to go into anymore detail. But clearly he’s impressed by streaming services like Spotify, which he says, “are the future of music. The experience with Napster gave them the insight–all the information [they needed].”

Jackson ticks off characteristics that he learned from finding new talent and producers in the music industry and says it’s not so different looking for successful entrepreneurs. It boils down to four traits, he says: quality of material, performance, appearance, and personality. It was those qualities that led him to Brian Nohe, founder of KonoAudio, which SMS Audio acquired in August to support its sound technology. “Ultimately the vision is not just a headphone company,” says Nohe, now SMS’s president. “I mean, 50 wants to create an audio company. You will see us move into laptops, speakers, and home entertainment.”

Jackson and Nohe say you might expect them to partner with device makers like HP, but it’s SMS’s technology (not to be confused with the alternate name for text messaging) that they feel, that will help distinguish them from competitors. Jackson is well aware he’s entering a saturated market, introducing yet another offering of celebrity endorsed headphones. Ironically it was 50 Cent’s bosses, Dr. Dre and Interscope chairman Jimmy Iovine, who sparked the craze with their line of Robert Brunner-designed Beats by Dr. Dre headphones, from Monster, which led to similar cross-branding deals with Lady Gaga, Ludacris, P. Diddy, Justin Bieber, Daft Punk, and even Quincy Jones and Miles Davis. But Jackson believes SMS’s wireless technology will help it stand out–technology, he adds, that’s even impressed Dre and Iovine. “It uses Kleer technology, which is a higher level of technology than what’s presented with BlueTooth,” he says. For his Sync headphones, for example, up to four headphones can be wirelessly synced to one single source, enabling users to hear CD-quality music as far as 50 feet away, be it from an iPhone or stereo system.

Jackson also looks forward to the challenge, especially with his mentor Dr. Dre. “[Dre] is so competitive,” he says. “They’re not offended by me [doing this]. This project allows me to show you from my perspective what the best quality is. [Beats by Dre] are all over the place. It’s just time for a new version.”

Finally, he’s excited about the new headphones project–not the first time he’s been charged up by a new venture. When 50 Cent tweeted to his 3.8 million followers about H&H Imports, a company his G-Unit label owns 30,000,000 shares of, the company’s stock nearly quadrupled, earning the rapper an estimated $8.7 million overnight. Trouble is, the self-promtion ran afoul of financial authorities. “I tell you that was a nightmare,” Jackson says, laughing. “I had some conversations with the SEC.”

Before the meeting draws to a close, 50 and Nohe want me to try out a pair of the new Sync headphones. I slip on a pair, and wait for the music to come on. Moments later, a song begins playing, magically streaming into my ears. It’s “Disco Inferno.” By 50 Cent.

Clearly he’s still capable of some self-promotion.