Now that, for those of us in the Northern Hemisphere at any rate, the summer holiday season is actually or virtually over, the IPKat begs your indulgence for a moment and asks if he can take a few minutes of your precious time. First, we have some bits of IPKat news. Some IPKat weblog facts and figures: as of this morning, when the IPKat pressed the little button that caused this post to go live, this blog had a very gratifying 5,775 email subscribers and 2,664 RSS feeders. That's very gratifying when we consider that every one of these people is or was sufficiently interested in IP to want to receive news of all its posts. Also this morning, the IPKat's Twitter account at @Ipkat (http://twitter.com/#!/Ipkat) had 2,727 followers. There are currently 6,348 searchable items on the weblog, dating back to June 2003. The total number of site visits since the web counter was installed on 10 August 2003 is 3,099,974. Visitors have come via ISPs in 130 identifiable countries. Though the blog is UK and Euro-focused, 74.95% of site visitors whose origins can be identified are based outside the UK. Change: Annsley (the AmeriKat) Merelle Ward is now practising as a solicitor with London-based law firm Collyer Bristow, where she will be getting her claws stuck into some juicy IP and reputation management litigation. Not so very far away, Birgit Clark has just taken up her new position as a trade mark attorney in the London office of Chicago-based Baker & McKenzie. Jeremy Phillips has decided to step back from his lecturing and article-writing activities in order to devote more time to blogging and to editing the Journal of Intellectual Property Law & Practice (JIPLP) and the European Trade Mark Reports (ETMR) — but he will still be chairing events and participating in panel discussions. No change: Matt (Matt the Kat) Fisher and Neil J. Wilkof are, well, more or less the same today as they were last week … Departures: Mark Schweizer is taking a break from the blog team in order to pursue his judicial career and his research interests; Catherine (Cat the Kat) Lee is also taking a break from blogging while she takes up an exciting IP and litigation position with Gowlings. We look forward to welcoming Mark and Catherine back in due course. Arrivals: we welcome a brand new Kat — our good friend David Brophy from over the water in Ireland. David, as a patent and trade mark attorney, is a partner in FRKelly. We also welcome Tom Carver as a Visiting Guest Kat from now to the end of 2011. He is Director of Wragge & Co's China practice and his work will already be familiar to readers of this weblog — though he has been given a roaming commission which doesn't just confine him to China. The IPKat also begs to remind you of some of the other weblogs with which he or his team members are associated. Some of the blogs listed below are "IPKat-approved", which means not just that the IPKat approves of them but that (i) the Kat provides some technical and logistical assistance as well as content and that (ii) the blogs do not carry paid-for advertising, pop-ups, banners, small ads via Adsense and so on. In particular there's … The 1709 Blog caters for the copyright enthusiast and seeks to cover all aspects of copyright law and practice in all its rich and varied glory (http://the1709blog.blogspot.com). As of today, this blog has 942 email subscribers and a searchable database of 703 items. It has an international team of contributors and is always pleased to learn and report on interesting and copyright developments from around the world. The SPC Blog is a handy information source for anyone who is involved in the tiny world of supplementary protection certificates (SPCs) for pharmaceutical and plant protection patents, as well as other forms of patent term extension (http://thespcblog.blogspot.com). As of today, this blog has 1,173 email subscribers, many of whom have enriched the content of this weblog with their comments and through the provision of information concerning SPCs. PatLit tackles patent dispute resolution topics — principally litigation — not just from the UK but from wherever interesting news and comments emerge. This blog also closely monitors the developing role of the Patents County Court (PCC) in England and Wales (http://patlit.blogspot.com) and hosts, in its 'PCC Page' series, the continuing saga of Cautious v IPOff — a fictional action brought in respect of the infringement of rights in a robotic octpous, which highlights practical and legal issues which a litigant might expect to face in the PCC. As of today, this blog has 852 email subscribers and a searchable database of 451 items. IP Finance, which was launched in January 2008 response to the UNCITRAL initiative on security interests in intangibles, touches that delicate interface between intellectual property and the world of finance, addressing securitisation, valuation, royalty rates, assessment of damages and the evolution of new business plans (http://ipfinance.blogspot.com). As of today, this blog has 972 email subscribers and a searchable database of 779 items. Kats Neil and Jeremy write for this blog. Class 46, founded by friends of European trade mark organisation MARQUES and driven by a 13-strong team of international contributors, this blog delivers trade mark and brand-related news and developments from across Europe (http://www.marques.org/class46/). As of today, this blog has 2,260 email subscribers and a searchable database of 2,602 items — mainly relating to European case law and office practice but with coverage of plenty of other themes too. Jeremy and Birgit both contribute to this blog, as does Mark. Class 99, founded by patent and trade mark attorney and blogmeister David Musker, is dedicated to design law and practice in the UK, in Europe and beyond (http://class-99.blogspot.com/). As of today, this blog has 479 email subscribers and a searchable database of 282 items. jiplp is the blog of the leading Oxford University Press monthly publication, The Journal of Intellectual Property Law and Practice (JIPLP), which IPKat team member Jeremy (http://jiplp.blogspot.com) edits, with fellow Kat Birgit on the editorial board. As of today, this blog has 518 email subscribers and a searchable database of 201 items. This blog's content includes Current Intelligence notes, book reviews, requests for articles on specific topics and guidance as to how to write (or not to write) good IP articles. Afro-IP (http://afro-ip.blogspot.com), for which the blogmeister is Darren Olivier, deals with the IP scene in Africa. As of today, this blog has 563 email subscribers and a searchable database of 1,021 items. This blog offers the largest single searchable online source of recent African IP news and hosts a weekly A to Z guide to official IP websites provided by each African nation in turn. IP Tango (http://iptango.blogspot.com), which is a bilingual blog with contributions both in Spanish and English, covers the increasingly important developments for IP in Latin America. As of today, this blog has 331 email subscribers and a searchable database of 810 items. Art & Artifice (http://aandalawblog.blogspot.com). As of today, this blog, led by Simone Blakeney (Clifford Chance LLP) and Rosie Burbidge (Olswang LLP), has 231 email subscribers and a searchable database of 136 items. Its scope is broad enough to cover not merely intellectual property law but other areas of legal concern for artists and the art-driven industries. Bringing up the tail is SOLO IP, which reflects some of the interests, and the anguish, of those who practise IP by themselves or in small groups, or who work in environments in which they are the only IP people (http://soloip.blogspot.com). As of today, this blog — which is driven by blogmeister Barbara Cookson (Filemot Technology Law Ltd), has 158 email subscribers and a searchable database of 214 items. Would you like to be an IP blogger? Most of the weblogs listed above are hoping to recruit some fresh talent into their blogging teams, as well as to host more good guest items from occasional writers. If you (i) have something valuable to say about IP, (ii) have some experience of IP in one form or another and (iii) think that you may be able to turn your hand at blogging (or already have some experience), do email Jeremy here, attaching or linking to your CV, and explain why you think you might be a good blogger or contributor. It may be a few days before you get a response, so do be patient!
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