Assignment 8 — IP

In 1879 the US Supreme Court threw out federal trademark law on the grounds that, unlike patents and copyrights, trademarks were not covered by the “progress” clause of the constitution (article 3, section 8). Trademarks, the court argued, were quite distinct from patents and copyrights, which the Court grouped together, although the Statue of Anne, the first copyright law, had been designed to separate copyright from earlier patents. In France, by contrast, trademarks are grouped together with patents as “propriété industrielle” whereas copyrights are seen as part of an entirely separate branch of intellectual property. Looking at the US, UK, and French approaches, which do you think is the appropriate grouping–or is there another that is more logical–and why?