Newspaper article International New York Times

Needling Amazon in Name Game

Newspaper article International New York Times

Needling Amazon in Name Game

Article excerpt

A cosmetics company that has just won a legal battle with Amazon over intellectual property rights is naming a product after Amazon's top U.K. executive.

Christopher North, Amazon's top executive in Britain, might soon be able to buy toiletries that carry his name.

An independent cosmetics company called Lush that has been locked in a three-year legal battle with Amazon has just taken out a trademark for "Christopher North" and created a shower gel with the tagline: "rich, thick and full of it."

Lush is trying to make a point in its legal dispute, in which the company contends that Amazon is infringing on its trademark by using the word "lush" to direct customers to rival cosmetic products on its site. This past week a British court ruled in Lush's favor.

Lush says its does not sell its products on Amazon, because it strongly disagrees with the company's tax practices. Amazon has been criticized for minimizing its taxes in Britain by routing sales to British customers through Luxembourg.

In ruling for Lush on Monday, Judge John Baldwin of the High Court said the right of the public to benefit from retail technologies did "not go so far as to allow a trader such as Amazon to ride roughshod over intellectual property rights. …

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