The Obscure Consumer in the Chinese Intellectual Property Law
European Intellectual Property Review, Volume 42, Issue 1, 2020
12 Pages Posted: 6 Dec 2019 Last revised: 6 Mar 2020
Date Written: December 4, 2019
Conventional wisdom suggests that an ideal intellectual property (IP) regime should consider various interests, such as incentives for creators and inventors, social access to creative works, market competition, and economic development. Nevertheless, the interest of consumers has long been neglected in IP policy-making. This article systematically reviews recent Chinese court decisions on IP and explores their implicit consumer policy implications. The article reveals that the Chinese courts have occasionally embedded consumer policy considerations when applying the Copyright Law, Patent Law, Trademark Law, and the Anti-Unfair Competition Law. Moreover, this article illustrates how policy goals underlying the IP regime and consumer protection law are consistent or supplementary with each other in the implementation of different categories of IP laws.
Keywords: China; consumer policy; copyright; design right; patents; trade marks; well-known marks
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