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Old 28.07.2018, 13:29
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passing off (equivalent)

Anyone here have experience / knowledge around Swiss laws to do with passing off or equivalent?

Having seen McBoard, a snowboard shop cheekily borrowing the branding of a popular industrial waste retailer, and easyHair, cheekily borrowing easyGroup's branding, I have formed the impression that the natives have a lax approach to trademarks in general.

Passing off (as we'd call it in a common law jurisdiction) is a more serious matter. I would like to know the basics of equivalent Swiss law in this area.

In this case we have tonerpartner.ch calling a non-Brother, (and not Brother TZE355 at that) product "Brother TZE335 P-Touch Farbband weiss auf schwarz 8,75 CHF 8,75 CHF Laminat 12mm x 8m Kompatibel".

By leading with "Brother TZE335 P-Touch" (Brother not being the name of the manufacturer of this product, but being the company name and trademark of the company with whose product compatibility is targeted here; P-Touch also being a Brother trademark; and TZE335 being Brother's model name for their product), and only introducing the tell-tale term "Kompatibel" at the end, after a lot of other info, TonerPartner would undoubtedly be passing off in jurisdictions with which I'm familiar.

Is there a relevant section of the Swiss civil code, or some legislation, that I would benefit from reading here?
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Old 28.07.2018, 13:32
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Re: passing off (equivalent)

tonerpartner.ch is playing the fool ("Passen die Artikel nicht in das Gerät?" - doesn't it fit?).
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Old 28.07.2018, 13:50
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Re: passing off (equivalent)

Have a look at https://www.tonerpartner.co.uk/brother/

Quote:
Compatible Cartridges for Home Use

Inkjet printers from Brother are ideal for use in the private sector, since the ink for Brother printers tends to be much cheaper than for laser printers. You can find all of the printer cartridges that you need, including the original ink cartridges from Brother, at very low prices in the TonerPartner online. Toner and matching drum kits, which are also known as drums and drum units, for the range of Brother laser printers are also available as original and compatible products from TonerPartner.
Even with the cheapest Brother printer model available it is possible to produce excellent colour copies and photo prints. In addition to the original printer cartridges for your Brother printer, you can also purchase compatible cartridges that come as rebuilt toner and toner refills in the dedicated TonerPartner online shop
Text on the .ch site is pretty much 1:1.

Looking at https://www.tonerpartner.ch/brother-p-touch-1000/ they very clearly differentiate between "Kompatibel" and "Original".

Did you buy "Kompatibel" or "Original"?
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Old 28.07.2018, 14:03
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Re: passing off (equivalent)

Tja, "deutsche Sprache, schwere Sprache" but of course when in doubt it's definitely fraud.
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Old 28.07.2018, 14:42
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Re: passing off (equivalent)

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Have a look at https://www.tonerpartner.co.uk/brother/
[..]
Did you buy "Kompatibel" or "Original"?
You are missing the point, the point being that "Brother $brother_model_name $other_brother_trademark [...] [...] Kompatibel" is a misleading product name for the non-Brother product, in exactly the same way "Mercedes-AMG S 63 4Matic+ [...] [...] Kompatibel" would be a misleading product name for, say, an equivalent Skoda vehicle in the same category.
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Old 28.07.2018, 14:49
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Re: passing off (equivalent)

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You are missing the point, the point being that "Brother $brother_model_name $other_brother_trademark [...] [...] Kompatibel" is a misleading product name for the non-Brother product, in exactly the same way "Mercedes-AMG S 63 4Matic+ [...] [...] Kompatibel" would be a misleading product name for, say, an equivalent Skoda vehicle in the same category.
No, you are completely missing the point.

XYZ compatible only means that it will work/fit on a XYZ or can replace it and says absolutely nothing about the brand, nor does it promise equal quality.
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Old 28.07.2018, 14:51
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Re: passing off (equivalent)

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You are missing the point, the point being that "Brother $brother_model_name $other_brother_trademark [...] [...] Kompatibel" is a misleading product name for the non-Brother product, in exactly the same way "Mercedes-AMG S 63 4Matic+ [...] [...] Kompatibel" would be a misleading product name for, say, an equivalent Skoda vehicle in the same category.
So... did you buy "Original" or not?

If you buy non OEM stuff, which is clearly marked as such, then you can hardly claim it is fake.

(It may be crap, but that is a different matter.)

WADR, you're missing the point. How else would you expect them to label the printer cartridges: "Suitable for use in some unnamed model of printer produced by an unknown manufacturer"?
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Old 28.07.2018, 15:01
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Re: passing off (equivalent)

I don't know about your 'compatible with' part of the question. But the other two examples I see no problem with.

In both cases they are trading in different categories.
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Old 28.07.2018, 15:13
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Re: passing off (equivalent)

Wonder why none of these printer-producers ever took the toner-people to court?

I don't know anybody who buys original toner. Hell, I used to sell printers (when they were not yet on the Media-Markt shelfs) and I sure do know where the money is there.
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Old 28.07.2018, 15:25
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Re: passing off (equivalent)

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You are missing the point, the point being that "Brother $brother_model_name $other_brother_trademark [...] [...] Kompatibel" is a misleading product name for the non-Brother product, in exactly the same way "Mercedes-AMG S 63 4Matic+ [...] [...] Kompatibel" would be a misleading product name for, say, an equivalent Skoda vehicle in the same category.
There seems to be a common trend in most threads you open - a belly ache about how some product or service does not work as you expected.
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Old 28.07.2018, 16:51
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Re: passing off (equivalent)

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Wonder why none of these printer-producers ever took the toner-people to court?

I don't know anybody who buys original toner. Hell, I used to sell printers (when they were not yet on the Media-Markt shelfs) and I sure do know where the money is there.
We do (as do many others given they are in so many stores)

On the big toner cartridges the price difference is nowhere near as huge as on the inkt when it comes to original or not.

Anyway, OP is not talking about toner or inkt
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Old 28.07.2018, 17:14
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Re: passing off (equivalent)

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Wonder why none of these printer-producers ever took the toner-people to court?
Here is an example of a product name that's absolutely fine, picked semi-randomly from Amazon: "LINKYO Compatible Toner Cartridges Replacement for HP 85A CE285A (Black, 2-Pack)"

A misleading product name for the same thing, based on the example under contention here, would be "HP 85A CE285A (Black, 2-Pack) compatible".

Quote:
I don't know anybody who buys original toner. Hell, I used to sell printers (when they were not yet on the Media-Markt shelfs) and I sure do know where the money is there.
In my various my IT jobs over ~15 years, the IT department always used original toner, but yeah that is beside the point here.

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[...] But the other two examples I see no problem with.

In both cases they are trading in different categories.
Well, they're not hugely problematic, because no big risk of confusion (bigger for easyGroup, as they offer a more diverse range of services including easyCinema, easyGym, easyValue, easy4Men). I merely mentioned them incidentally as amusements. Perhaps a look at the logo styling helps illustrate why "cheeky", I say no more than "cheeky" and "amusing" about these two.




Last edited by armed_neutrality; 28.07.2018 at 18:53. Reason: extra mcboard logo
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Old 29.07.2018, 01:05
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Re: passing off (equivalent)

What exactly is cheeky about McBoard? Same question WRT easyHair.
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Old 29.07.2018, 02:47
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Re: passing off (equivalent)

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What exactly is cheeky about McBoard? Same question WRT easyHair.
Nothing, nothing at all!

BTW, I'm opening a new mountain bike rental shop, called Bikea, you're invited to the opening party! What? No! Different category!

Logo:



What do you mean? What's cheeky about this, exactly? Exactly? That's just you with a belly-ache silly, because something doesn't work as you expected!

We have a device on our countertop to capture signatures of Dutch and Belgian customers at the outset! Why exactly? Because they always try to renegotiate the price when they return the bike, at the end, after they've already gone and used it! True story! No, we don't have this problem with Swedes, Brits, or even people from Luxembourg. Don't know, we just don't.

Last edited by armed_neutrality; 29.07.2018 at 03:25. Reason: add belly-ache section; categorise some of northern europe into those who basically understand contracts, and those who don't
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Old 29.07.2018, 03:43
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Re: passing off (equivalent)

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There seems to be a common trend in most threads you open - a belly ache about how some product or service does not work as you expected.
Yes, Jim2007, indeed.

Looking at all those thread titles made me wonder, armed_neutrality, what your motivation could possibly be. Are you perhaps collecting ideas for a consumer-complaints magazine? That's not a "belly-ache" question, just me genuinely wondering why your threads have that common trend. Sure, I'm also occasionally dissatisfied with products and services, but I couldn't imagine devoting quite that much energy to the disappointments.
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Old 29.07.2018, 08:22
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Re: passing off (equivalent)

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Nothing, nothing at all!

BTW, I'm opening a new mountain bike rental shop, called Bikea, you're invited to the opening party! What? No! Different category!

Logo:



What do you mean? What's cheeky about this, exactly? Exactly? That's just you with a belly-ache silly, because something doesn't work as you expected!

We have a device on our countertop to capture signatures of Dutch and Belgian customers at the outset! Why exactly? Because they always try to renegotiate the price when they return the bike, at the end, after they've already gone and used it! True story! No, we don't have this problem with Swedes, Brits, or even people from Luxembourg. Don't know, we just don't.
Considering their logo is trademarked then you can't do what you are planning. But there is no reason why you can't call your shop Bikea.

McDonalds doesn't own 'Mc' for bikes and easyjet doesn't own 'easy' for hair dressers.

Not sure what your true story has to do with trade names.
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Old 29.07.2018, 11:28
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Re: passing off (equivalent)

What do you make of this?


Anywhere, compare
Brother TZE335 P-Touch Farbband weiss auf schwarz 8,75 CHF 8,75 CHF Laminat 12mm x 8m Kompatibel.
with
Brother <cartridge description> Kompatibel.
Seems innocuous enough to me.

However, I have seen images of Her Majesty Queen Elisabeth the Second's being used in Swiss billboards. Now, that, is a disgrace and the UK should invade.
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Old 29.07.2018, 11:31
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Re: passing off (equivalent)

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However, I have seen images of Her Majesty Queen Elisabeth the Second's being used in Swiss billboards. Now, that, is a disgrace and the UK should invade.
Aren't they here already?
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Old 29.07.2018, 14:28
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Re: passing off (equivalent)

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What do you make of this?


Anywhere, compare
Brother TZE335 P-Touch Farbband weiss auf schwarz 8,75 CHF 8,75 CHF Laminat 12mm x 8m Kompatibel.
with
Brother <cartridge description> Kompatibel.
Seems innocuous enough to me.
Okay, this is the core disagreement here, and the point that JahWaugh and others missed. It's not a question of whether some other document explains it all, it's a question of whether the product name itself is okay. Interesting you think it is. Fine.

In other news, I've been working on the branding and product list for my bike company. We're now going to be called "Bike AG".

Logo:



We'll be selling some components and consumables too, such as Shimano 105 FC-5800 (172.50mm, 53+39+ x) Kompatibel, DMR Plattformpedale V8 Kompatibel, Brooks England B 67 Kompatibel and Muc-Off Dry Lube Bike Lubricant Kompatibel.
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Old 29.07.2018, 14:40
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Re: passing off (equivalent)

Stop making a joke off yourself, and get out of the sun since you clearly are suffering a heatstroke. You say you worked 15 yrs in IT, yet you have not the slightest clue what "Compatible" means.
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