Showing posts with label Global Economy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Global Economy. Show all posts

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Branding Snowden: Chinese tech firm wants to trademark NSA leaker

Branding Snowden: Chinese tech firm wants to trademark NSA leaker
Published time: August 16, 2013 14:53

A woman holds a portrait of former U.S. spy agency contractor Edward Snowden in front of her face as she stands in front of the U.S. embassy during a protest in Berlin.(Reuters / Thomas Peter)

A Beijing-based electric car technology company wants to use NSA-leaker Edward Snowden’s name as a brand for their new ‘secret technology’.

Electric car technology firm Hong Yuan Lan Xiang (HYLX) submitted an application to the Chinese authorities to register the “Snowden” trademark in both Chinese and English, manager Hefeng Zhu told the South China Morning Post.

“We are talking with China’s domestic carmakers, and we aim to launch cars equipped with our technology by the end of this year,” Zhu told the South China Morning Post in a telephone interview on Friday.

HYLX considers their new ‘top-secret’ technology to be as groundbreaking as Snowden’s leaks. Removable batteries, conversion from fuel to electric, and expedited charging are some of the new products the company is offering, Zhu said.

“Snowden”, a brand already registered by several Chinese companies prior to the famed NSA leaks, may be denied on the basis it is too “political” as the name is considered a “sensitive” subject to Chinese authorities, according to Wang Hao, manager of Beijing-based Baishifuda Times Intellectual Property firm, told the Post.

Experts believe it could take 12 to 15 months for the patent application to be approved, Wang Hao said.

Unlike other patent law, a trademark can be used for multiple products, as long as the industries don’t overlap.

But since firms are allowed to register the same trademark under different “categories” listed by the country’s State Administration for Industry and Commerce, the Chinese aren’t the only ones hoping to cash in on the former US intelligence agent’s name by registering it as a trademark.

Russian businessmen have attempted to register the image of the whistleblower’s face. Rospatent has three reported applications for the image of Snowden’s face, likely lifted from screen shots of his on-air interview with the Guardian.

"The desire of businessmen to make money on some media personalities is clear. If his portrait is recognizable, Snowden may challenge in court its commercial use and has all chances to succeed," Stanislav Kaufman, brand manager of ‘Putinka’ vodka told Russian Beyond the Headlines.

Celebrities often patent themselves to gain exclusive rights so their names aren’t used without permission in commercials or endorsements, but there have been no reports if Snowden filed a trademark for his own name.

Thursday, March 29, 2012


BRICS agree to local currency credits to ease dollar dependency

Published: 29 March, 2012, 14:56

Dimitry Medvedev (L) and Manmohan Singh during the BRICS summit in New Delhi on March 29, 2012 (AFP Photo / Prakash Singh)

The BRICS - Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa - have agreed to provide credit to each other in local currencies. Officials say the deal will facilitate economic growth in times of crisis.

The currency swap deal is aimed at promoting trade and investment in local currencies as well as to cut transaction costs. It’s also seen as a step to replace the dollar as a reserve currency in trade between BRICS.

“The idea is in line with many interests and economic exigencies in the world economy,” Yaroslav Lissovolik, the chief economist at Deutsche Bank told RT. “The euro and dollar are no longer seen as unquestionable monopolies in the role of reserve currencies. Clearly the world needs more reserve currencies.”

The deal would also increase the BRICS influence on the international arena and will make their cooperation less sensitive to sanctions from the West, experts say.

"The BRICS countries are in the first rank to do the job that international financial system now needs. What the BRICS said was a very welcomed wake up call," John Kirton, the Co-Director of the BRICS Reasearch Group told RT.

Russia and China have been trading in the rouble and yuan for several years, now Russia plans to expand local currency settlement with India.

“With China it took us three years to (evolve) from initial conversations to trading in local currencies,” Vladimir Dmitriev, the chairman of Russia’ s VEB told reporters. “I think we will meet similar terms with India”.

Meanwhile the swap requires a lot of technical work by each country such as the synchronization of national banking legislation, according to Mr. Dmitriev.

The BRICS countries are also going to announce plans on a joint development bank which is considered a possible rival to the World Bank and the IMF. If established, it would function as a lending agency and would provide finance for joint BRICS projects.

"They made it very clear it would be built to benefit not only BRICS countries themselves, but developing countries more broadly," said KIrton. "But the big message was to give the World Bank more resources, only then would they see how the BRICS bank would fit in the supplement what they’ve already got."