Hong Kong Judge sides with Apple over Proview

“A Chinese court is leaning in favor of Apple in a convoluted case over who holds the right to use the term ‘iPad’ in that country,” Meghan Kelly reports for VentureBeat.

“Chinese manufacturer Proview Technology had owned the trademark, but it failed to transfer the trademarks for ‘iPad’ to Apple, which claimed to have purchased the product name years ago,” Kelly reports. “‘We bought Proview’s worldwide rights to the iPad trademark in 10 different countries several years ago,’ according to a statement from Apple. ‘Proview refuses to honor their agreement with Apple, and a Hong Kong court has sided with Apple in this matter.'”

Kelly reports, “Judge Hon Poon of the High Court in Hong Kong, however, formally disagreed with [Proview]…”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Fred Mertz” for the heads up.]

11 Comments

  1. … ethical. Or should that be “honest”? Whatever. Quite a few cultures feel it is acceptable to judge in favor of “the home team”, even when they are patently wrong. Take the sheriffs in New Mexico or in Worcester, MA as examples in the US. Or the government of Israel, or – regarding Ireland – Gt. Britain. Makes for excellent horror stories – mostly true.

    1. As I commented in a different MDN article, Hong Kong is part of China but a separate jurisdiction, so its legal decisions might have not be binding on the mainland.

      Hong Kong of course was heavily influenced by western ideas while it was a British colony, before it was returned to China in 1997. There has been growing animosity between Hong Kongers and visiting mainland Chinese who are seen as unkempt/uncivilized and don’t respect local customs and rules, as a recent viral video of a heated argument demonstrates… in it, a young girl in a tour group from China was eating hot noodles on the train, despite the “no food no drink” rule. Even that *might* have been overlooked except she kept spilling it onto the floor and making a mess. After a lot of yelling between her mother and other passengers, someone pulled the emergency stop and officials had to step in.

    1. The problem is the guy who runs Proview, who sold the trademark to Apple and now is trying to say that it was his other office that owned the trademark. Hopefully China/Hong Kong incorporate the “loser pays” trial system so that this guy has to pay Apple’s legal fees for being such a putz.

    2. The problem isn’t the HK judge, but the local Chinese judges in Shenzhen.

      EXACTLY. That court was itself criminal for even hearing the case. Every other court outside of Hong Kong that hears and judges on this case is also acting outside the law.

  2. I thought this was the kind of corruption the Chinese government has been publicly trying to clean up. Oh, well I guess it’s business as usual. I would hope the government isn’t so shortsighted that they don’t realize how much damage this could do to future business with foreign companies.

  3. The source article says:
    “A Chinese court is leaning in favor of Apple in a convoluted case over who holds the right to use the term “iPad” in that country.”

    WRONG. The Hong Kong RULED in Apple’s favor on JUNE 28, 2011. In Apple’s sales contract with Proview, Hong Kong is listed as specifically the ONLY jurisdiction where court cases regarding the contract can be heard. Hong Kong ruled against Proview. It’s over. Proview’s counter suits against Apple outside of the Hong Kong jurisdiction are irrelevant and illegal as are those courts’ willingness to hear and judge upon those suits.

    IOW: It’s WAY over.

    You can read the entire Hong Kong court ruling, from last June (!) here:

    Here’s the Chinese Court Ruling Backing Apple in iPad Trademark Tiff

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