The Battle Over Chocolate Bunnies
from the seriously? dept
It may be surprising to learn that, in this age of automated vehicle assembly and supersonic flight, crafting a hollow, mass-produced chocolate bunny is no mean feat. There are considerations of structural integrity, and the performance capabilities of high-speed foil-wrapping devices....Of course, as other chocolate bunny makers have also noted, making chocolate bunnies of a similar size and shape has happened for many, many years in Europe -- long before Lindt claimed a trademark on the shape earlier this decade. And, so, for the past decade, there have been numerous lawsuits (with all different kinds of decisions) over the legality of trademarking chocolate bunnies -- eventually reaching Europe's high court today. At issue was whether or not Lindt's decision to trademark the shape was done in "bad faith" and the court has now sent the case back to an Austrian court, saying that they should consider a variety of factors in determining whether or not the initial trademark registration was done in bad faith.
In court in Austria, Hauswirth called to the stand witnesses from the makers of chocolate-casting machines and foil-wrapping machines.
They testified, said Mr. Schmidt, that "there are certain limits" to the "radius of the ears and so on." You can't just make a bunny any old way you wish.
So, rest assured, we still have a few more absurdist acts as we find out whether or not chocolate bunnies are truly trademarkable.