back to article Time to re-file your patents and trademarks, Britain

Businesses will likely need to re-file their patents and trademarks in the UK following the Brexit vote, leading intellectual property lawyers have warned. The decision to leave the European Union puts a big question mark over "automatic EU-wide IP protection," says patent law specialist Iain Connor of Pinsent Masons, writing …

  1. YetAnotherLocksmith

    That last paragraph is this whole f'd up mess in a nutshell.

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      But in this case it is also the ideal solution.

      The nice thing about the EPC is that it is ruled on by German judges who are also DipEng, rather than East Texas juries. Not changing that is a good thing.

      1. sabroni Silver badge

        re: also the ideal solution.

        " if the UK wants to ensure that it is not at a disadvantage in the global marketplace, it would likely need to adopt European rules wholesale, while not being in a position to influence their development."

        That's an ideal solution to what, precisely? Having some influence?

      2. Pat Att

        Do you mean the UPC? That will be (or would have been) German, French and English judges mainly, with the option of having local judges. If you do mean the EPC (European Patent Convention) then that is unchanged with Brexit, where only local judges are involved. UK patent judges are very switched on, and techically savvy.

    2. keithpeter
      Windows

      @YetAnotherLocksmith and all

      https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/131215

      Pissing in the wind, but l'd love to see this hit 10 million if it can just to cause Boris a little more discomfort. His face was a picture when he realised that he was holding the bag.

      Back on topic: what did people do before EU wide patents? File in all the most important markets?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        > Back on topic: what did people do before EU wide patents? File in all the most important markets?

        From what I recall (admittedly from quite a few years ago) in the company I worked for the rule was to apply in US, UK and Taiwan and then possibly consider other jursdictions and the "EU patent" which was being promoted at the time was not really worthwhile.

  2. Will Godfrey Silver badge
    Unhappy

    And so it starts.

    Apparently France want to have us maintaining our own channel tunnel border now - what a surprise.

    1. Martin Summers Silver badge

      Re: And so it starts.

      Oh noes! How scary!

    2. raving angry loony

      Re: And so it starts.

      I have no idea if your statement is true or not, but why would it be a surprise if it was?

      There was a warning prior to Brexit that the Calais border agreement would be jeopardized should the UK vote to leave. The arrangement, where the French allow British police to operate on French soil, is based on the UK being part of the EU. Since the UK will be leaving, it makes sense that all those refugee claimants be moved to the UK side. Not France's problem any more, why would they let a quitter operate on their territory?

      Unless there are treaties in place, countries are generally not responsible for people leaving their country, only for controlling who gets in. Let the UK deal with its own refugee claimants on its own soil, since that seems to have been one of the reasons they voted to leave the EU in the first place.

      1. Baldy50

        Re: And so it starts.

        Concrete, a shit load of it and problem solved!

      2. The Nazz Silver badge

        Re: And so it starts.

        Easiest of responses to France.

        Apply the law, international standards :

        Return those would be illegal immigrants to the last safe country they passed through ie France. By air if necessary, parachutes on request.

        It is perfectly clear from the results what the one overriding issue is.

        1. raving angry loony

          Re: And so it starts.

          Except the aren't "illegal immigrants". They're "refugees" (technically: asylum seekers). They therefore fall under the United Nations 1951 Convention & 1967 Protocol Relating to the Status of Refugees, where refoulement is specifically forbidden. Admittedly you wouldn't be the first to ignore that clause, but just thought I should point out that your attitude is contrary to the very laws you claim to be using to support your xenophobia.

          Meanwhile, the overriding issue seems to be a growing sense of xenophobia, ignorance, and fear in the UK which has been used by certain self-serving politicians to drive this particular issue. Good luck with that.

          1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

            Re: And so it starts.

            Except that "refoulement" in that sense refers to returning them to their country of origin, which generally isn't France. If the French applied international law, and abided by the Dublin agreement, they would require those asylum seekers to request asylum in France.

            Once the migrants/asylum seekers are in Europe, EU or otherwise, it's too late to deal with the problem anyway. The only real solution is to prevent them from leaving their own country, preferably by stopping that country from being a war zone. Encouraging them to run away from the problem and export it to Europe doesn't help.

            That solution, of course, is independent of the EU, and of UK membership of the EU, which is why the whole migrant issue is a red herring as far as Brexit was concerned.

            1. JEDIDIAH
              Linux

              Re: And so it starts.

              Weren't these people already in a save haven, namely Turkey? So "International Law" effectively gives anyone total freedom of movement so long as they can screech "refugee"? That seems a bit daft.

              It seems they stopped being refugees the moment they left Turkey.

              1. YARR

                After we leave the EU and have a points based system, the category of migrants in the Calais camp will be automatically refused entry, and will have to return to their own country to find work. The burden of our dysfunctional ultra-liberal border policy will be gone and the rest of Europe will probably demand the same system.

                1. Eponymous Cowherd

                  They are illegals you pillock. They aren't going to present themselves to immigration officers and ask to be let in.

                  At the moment trucks, cars, etc are searched on the French side of the channel. Catching an illegal on a truck on which he has to stay if he wants to get to the UK is a lot more effective than trying to catch them once they are this side of the channel and merely have to scarper as soon as the truck doors open.

      3. Disgusted of Cheltenham

        Re: And so it starts.

        No, there was a threat about Calais, until someone checked and found it was a bilateral and not EU agreement, similar to the position on the border between US and Canada.

        Just because we can now do stupid things doesn't mean that we will stop seasonal workers or make it harder for tourists. Our current mess is partly because of the refusal by the head of the civil service to allow it to consider plan B on the grounds that it wasn't government policy - ignoring the point that the government had, for better or worse, pushed this one over to the people. Of course we now hear that the Bank of England and Treasury have been working on it. But the last budget should have had in and out options.

        1. Richard 12 Silver badge

          The Budget did have In and Out options

          The Out option was 5% tax rise and even more cuts.

          Leave then complained that nobody knew what would happen and we shouldn't pay attention to any experts.

      4. disgustedoftunbridgewells Silver badge

        Re: And so it starts.

        It's not true. The Mayor of Calais is at it again, asking for the border to be moved back.

        He does this every 6 months, come rain, shine or Brexit.

        1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge
          Facepalm

          Re: And so it starts.

          He does this every 6 months, come rain, shine or Brexit.

          I think you'll find that Madame Natacha Bouchart is a she.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: And so it starts.

            To be honest, it's a tough call just from looking at her. (no offence intended, your worship).

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: And so it starts.

          "It's not true. The Mayor of Calais is at it again, asking for the border to be moved back."

          ... and the French President has issued a statement to say its a bilateral agreement and not affected by any EU decision. In addition, last week the French found the arrangement quite useful last week to stop the "aid convoy" in Dover.

      5. SundogUK

        Re: And so it starts.

        "The arrangement, where the French allow British police to operate on French soil, is based on the UK being part of the EU."

        This is simply not true. The agreement is specifically NOT EU based.

    3. King Jack
      Coat

      Re: And so it starts.

      That's a few new jobs created then.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: That's a few new jobs created then.

        Beware of Lawyers, Patent Agents & other IPR hangers-on bearing Invoices.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: And so it starts.

      "Apparently France want to have us maintaining our own channel tunnel border now - what a surprise"

      That border crossing in France is an agreement between France and UK and it's manned by UK staff. It is not an EU organized thing. So the only thing beginning here is the bullshit from the sky-falling crowd.

      European Patent office has long been a rogue element. Do you recall how they tried to change the law to support software patents, by applying caselaw from the European Patent Court (i.e. themselves) to re-interpret the treaty they exist under? There was zero input from ANY state into that too, that office has some serious issues.

  3. Dadmin
    Thumb Up

    Formula 1, now on here in the wwwebs

    "Italy looks like it might be in pole position although the Netherlands is also a good candidate"

    GO SCUDERIA FERRARI! And watch out for that Max Verstappen, as the article correctly points out!

    Way to go on Formula 1 coverage, elreg!

  4. tfewster Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Suck THAT up, James Dyson

    You wanted out, you got it.

  5. JeffyPoooh Silver badge
    Pint

    'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

    You shouldn't bother to change all the paperwork from 'EU' to 'UK', until you figure out if Scotland is leaving or not.

    P.S. - Anyone chosen a name yet? "England and Wales" isn't very imaginative.

    1. Mark 85 Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

      How about "The Magic Queendom"? err... might infringe a certain "Magic Kingdom" though.....

    2. raving angry loony

      Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

      P.S. - Anyone chosen a name yet? "England and Wales" isn't very imaginative.

      I don't know, "EW" has a certain ring to it.

    3. gerdesj Silver badge

      Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

      Just England will do the job 8) However NI would get a bit upset unless they depart the UK.

      An end result that will piss me off far worse than Brexit did.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

        Seems unlikely that NI would vote to leave the UK, since the Brexit leave vote was unsurprisingly strongest in the pro-union heartlands, and the remain vote strongest in the border counties. That closely matches the results of previous independence polls (with the notable exception of N. Down)

        1. MR J

          Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

          It might seem unlikely that NI would want to leave the UK, but now that the UK is out of the EU then they may well decide to go that path.

          The truth here is that no one will know what will happen until it happens.

          I love the talk tho, we are going to open up a "points" system so we can bring in people to pick the fruit and do other jobs that the UK people don't want to do. It's funny because a lot of the migration that was taking place was people moving to do this exact thing - without points!.

          Let us see just what happens over this next week. There will be a lot of economic shock taking place, things that will take a lifetime to recover from.

          At least Dyson is happy, probably because the first thing he'll push for is the UK Gov to remove the ban of 1.6kw vacs and get rid of that performance sticker (it is flawed, but it shouldn't be gone - just fixed!).

          My guess is that patents and trademarks will be a no-issue thing as it should be easy to add in legislation that will define specific dates for things as counting. Passed in EU in 2015, valid in UK, Passed in EU in EU in 2017, not valid for UK (go file).

    4. TJ1

      Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

      Sure have!

      Currently: The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

      After Scottish Independence: Little Britain and Northern Ireland

      After N.I. Border Poll is triggered and results in 'unify with Ireland' : Little Britain

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

        "After Scottish Independence: Little Britain and Northern Ireland"

        Little Britain = Brittany.

        Great Britain = Large island between mainland Europe and Ireland.

      2. CowardlyLion

        Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

        Except that Great Britain is the name of the island that comprises England, Scotland and Wales.

        So, if Scotland leaves we can't call what's left the UK (the union of the the kingdoms of Scotland and England) nor Great Britain, because we only have half the island.

        Not that only having part of the continent stops the USA referring to themselves as "America".

        1. Eddy Ito Silver badge

          Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

          Not that only having part of the continent stops the USA referring to themselves as "America".

          Huh, everyone I know here says "U.S." or "us". It's largely only the recent immigrants, folks across one pond or the other, songwriters, and political hacks that say "America" as far as I can tell. Most of us are far too lazy to use all those syllables.

          But if you're looking for a new name I actually think "Brex" is both short and catchy.

          1. Red Bren

            Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

            Poundland

            (As suggested by an audience member on BBCR4 The Now Show)

    5. PNGuinn
      Go

      Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

      The UK is the United Kingdom of Britain and Ireland. If Kiltland want to leave it still remains the UK.

      It's THEM as 'll have to think up a new name for 'emselves.

      Faced with the prospect of the "best" thing in Scotland - the road to England - ie the border being sealed / controlled - and if they go for SCENTRY (you read it here first, folks) it'll have to be - I wonder how many Scots will do to their glorious nationalist leader what the UK as a whole has just done to Davey Mc2face??

      1. Rich 11 Silver badge

        Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

        The UK is the United Kingdom of Britain and Ireland. If Kiltland want to leave it still remains the UK.

        Completely wrong. The UK is the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The 'United' refers to the Union of the Kingdoms of England and Scotland in 1707. If Scotland leaves, we've got to find another excuse if we want to keep 'United' in the country's name.

        1. Baldy50

          Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

          Ununited, silly!

          1. VinceH Silver badge

            Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

            We should just call ourselves the Land of Make Believe. Or Fantasy Island.

            51% of us voted on the basis of fantasy, so that makes sense.

          2. Stoneshop Silver badge

            Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

            Borisland

            1. zebthecat

              Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

              Dismaland?

          3. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

            Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

            Ununited, silly!

            Just make a small letter order change. The Untied Kingdom.

            1. Baldy50

              Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

              Love that one!

      2. JeffyPoooh Silver badge
        Pint

        Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

        PNGuinn "Kiltland" etc.

        Hey. Be nice. Scotland has nuclear armed subs. They'll be the nuclear superpower.

        They've also got Alex McIlveen, just as dangerous.

      3. This post has been deleted by its author

    6. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

      Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

      Think of a name for after London votes to become a separate city state so it can apply for membership of the EU.

    7. kmac499

      Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

      S'Obvious

      We start with The United KIngdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

      Less Northern Ireland = The United Kingdom of Great Britain

      Less Scotland = Little Britain (Yeah I know...)

      and if Wales gets pissed off = LIttle England

      Which I suspect is what some secretly wanted all along..

    8. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

      Shithole

      1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

    9. captain veg

      Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

      Singular Kingdom of Southern Britain and Northern Ireland (provisionally). Or how about Narnia?

      -A.

      1. captain veg

        Singluar Kingdom

        Or, given the profile of the Leave voters, how about Singular Kingdom of the Uneducated, Misguided, Bigots And Geriatrics?

        If that doesn't get at least 17 million downvotes, I shall be very disappointed.

        -A.

    10. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken Silver badge

      Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

      Anglia.

      Book tip: England, England by Julian Barnes

    11. Pat Att

      Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

      Wankland

    12. Disk0

      Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

      How about "Fomer United Kingdom" analogues to the FYROM: "Former Yugoslavian Republic Of Macedonia"

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

        I think Little Faragestan is the best option

    13. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

      Divided Kingdom seems quite fitting from a number of angles.

      I wonder if Denmark would be willing to give up DK?

      DV might have to do.

    14. ThreePointFiveInchFloppy
      Coffee/keyboard

      Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

      Wangland?

    15. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: 'EU' -> 'UK' -> 'K'

      Looking at some of those waiting in the wings to take over, I suggest "Airstrip One".

  6. Jeffrey Nonken Silver badge

    It sure looked easy when "leave" was just a tick mark on a ballot, didn't it?

  7. Vimes

    We're still full members of the EU until article 50 of the Lisbon treaty is used, so strictly speaking there is nothing currently stopping the new system from going ahead since it hasn't been invoked nor does it seem likely to be invoked in the near future?

    In any case the referendum itself was purely advisory and has no laws behind it that compel us to follow the result. IANAL but where the laws are concerned there would appear to be nothing to stop the government from simply ignoring the result entirely. Of course that would probably never happen & would also have other ramifications but that's a different matter: the only impact it has on how we proceed is whatever the government decides it should be.

    http://jackofkent.com/2016/06/five-legal-points-about-the-leave-victory/

    1. gerdesj Silver badge
      Linux

      "In any case the referendum itself was purely advisory"

      You have to accept the hand you were dealt. I voted "remain" but am fully resolved now to make the best of "leave". The thing about democracy is it *is* democratic (what we as people simply "do") and is probably able to write laws as it goes about its business. Sometimes the rule of law has to doff its cap to the way of things.

      If you are any good at international negotiation then I suspect there will be a few new jobs coming up for grabs soon.

      1. Pompous Git Silver badge

        The thing about democracy is it *is* democratic (what we as people simply "do")

        Democracy; I've heard of that! Leonard Cohen even wrote a song about it:

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DU-RuR-qO4Y

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          There's Leonard Cohen, and there's also (less famously)...

          Call It Democracy (Bruce Cockburn). Written 1986 about the International Monetary Fund, still as valid as ever.

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Fr6khzOskI (live, with subtitles)

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gfcfdt0jcWs (official, w 'interesting' video)

          Money talks. Mostly it says "fuck you, wage slaves".

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        don't blame me. I voted to remain

        but in my heart I knew that the sun/mirror/mail/express readers would vote us out.

        Like the Iraq war, there was no plan for the situation we are now in. The BREXIT people are leaderless and actually policyless on the subject of what to do now.

        If I were in No 10, I'd say to them, 'ok you take charge (Apart from Boris) tomorrow'.

        Personally, and as someone who is about to retire I am actively looking to ASAP. I was going to consider France but 'les Frogs' are really peed off with us, as are the Spanish so it might be Italy where I end up.

        IMHO, the result was wrong and those left behind (the lights won't be on) will have one god almighty mess to sort out. I get the feeling that a number of large companies will follow quit the UK within 2 years. Then it will be 3M unemployed yet with lots of jobs unfulfilled as the current migrant workforce go home and crops rot in the fields and no little englanders want to do the jobs they leave.

        What price then eh?

        My best guess is a 15 year depression. -ve interest rates, 10% inflation and 0% wage rises.

        Sad, rather sad really but what is done, is done. There is not going back.

        1. Baldy50

          Re: don't blame me. I voted to remain

          I didn't BTW, But look on the bright side of life we can sack the MEP's soon, Farage can go take a hike and the cherry on the top, moron's going too!

          Trump for president and Doris for PM, may as well have twin idiots eh!

          1. ecofeco Silver badge

            Re: don't blame me. I voted to remain

            Trump for president and Doris for PM, may as well have twin idiots eh!

            We did that already. Thatcher/Reagan. That's how we got to here.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: don't blame me. I voted to remain

              >"We did that already. Thatcher/Reagan."

              I bet you've used that line so often it's left a groove in your holster.

        2. Martijn Otto
          Joke

          10% inflation

          You mean that in a single stroke the UK achieved what the E.U. has been trying for many years now: Increase inflation. This is the magic bullet everybody has been waiting for.

        3. Chris G Silver badge

          Re: don't blame me. I voted to remain

          I am in the process of retiring and already live in Spain, Rajoy and a couple of other 'Know nothings' have made some unpleasant remarks but The Spanish People or at least the ones that I work with and live with on a daily basis have no problem with us expats. Besides, until the UK actually invokes and carries out Article 50, we are still in so get here before that happens and your rights at least will be protected by the Vienna Agreement. I have also made an unintentional killing on the pound taking a dive so I am a little better off and buying a few goodies that would have been expensive here anyway and are now even with shipping affordable from the UK.

          Personally it looks as though there may be enough pressure to force a second referendum or dicount this one, so leaving may not actually happen.

          Then the UK just needs to find some leaders who are Statesmen with balls who can stand up to Brussels and start politicking instead playing at it, to renegotiate the UK membership terms and tell Frau Merkel to wind her neck in.

          1. Baldy50

            Re: don't blame me. I voted to remain

            Ta! lived there for thirteen years and every local I spoke to didn't agree with joining the EU, no referendum the government just decided and the prices of stuff just went up and up and up, fuel especially but not wages!

            Literally in just two days you could add fifteen percent on anything you bought, for a while before you could choose to pay in Peseta's or Euro’s and if you took the time to do the maths, it was cheaper to use Peseta's so everyone new where this was going.

            Since the EURO is weaker without the UK as a member the bank of England should down grade the fooking EURO, don't ya think?

          2. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

            Re: don't blame me. I voted to remain

            Personally it looks as though there may be enough pressure to force a second referendum or dicount this one, so leaving may not actually happen.

            That would be the worst possible outcome. It would simply label the UK as a country that doesn't know what it wants, can't make it's mind up, and so can be completely ignored by the EU steamroller. We'd be stuck in the EU, with no credibility, and no power to change it (not that any individual country apart from Germany has any power to change it anyway).

            The only option we have now is to make exit work. The defeatists who won't do that, and who seem to want the UK to fail just to prove that they were right, have made themselves part of the problem.

            1. breakfast

              Re: don't blame me. I voted to remain

              We'd be stuck in the EU, with no credibility, and no power to change it

              Whereas in a post-Brexit agreement that gave us access to the free market, the legendary "Norway style" approach, we would not be in the EU, but we would still be bound by the majority of EU rules with no credibility and no question of having the power to change it. It's a little hard to see how that is better.

              Also if a substantial number of people voted based on claims that were immediately revealed to be simple lies ( almost everything the Leave campaign said ) then it doesn't seem as democratic as it might - a misinformed choice that goes against one's best interests puts one onto difficult ground.

      3. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        "You have to accept the hand you were dealt."

        OTOH Boris seems to be back-pedalling a bit, saying there's no hurry.

        1. Stoneshop Silver badge

          Boris seems to be back-pedalling a bit,

          Juncker suggests going ahead as soon as possible.

          1. Bob Rocket

            Re: Boris seems to be back-pedalling a bit, - Junkers

            Junkers is toast (along with quite a few self serving Eurocrats), he will be gone long before we get anywhere near the door marked EU exit.

            1. dajames Silver badge

              Re: Boris seems to be back-pedalling a bit, - Junkers

              Junkers is toast (along with quite a few self serving Eurocrats), he will be gone long before we get anywhere near the door marked EU exit.

              I'm not so sure ... and it'd be a bit late. I wish we could have been rid of all the federalist idealists (of whom Junkers is not the worst or the most extreme) long ago, then we might not have wanted or needed a referendum at all.

              I voted remain because I thought it better to reform from within than to run away, but I find I have little taste for reforming the EU now that we're going to be leaving, I just want to see it implode as fast as possible so that it can be replaced it with what it should have been all along.

      4. phil dude
        Joke

        distraction...

        My cynical side, can't help but think, that the entire panic this "vote" has generated is all a show - for the ringmasters.

        The legally binding point was almost completely missing from *both* campaigns, and since the current PM will not activate "$POKE 50,1", the new *Conservative* leader will be negotiating - and you want to bet that this panic, has made the *countries* of the EU look at the *unelected* commission and migrant volume think "this is a problem".?

        Oh and Bojo has been angling to be PM from before his mayoral campaign, I see this as his way of being the savior of the EU and winning a General election...

        Too soon?

        P.

      5. DavCrav Silver badge

        "You have to accept the hand you were dealt. I voted "remain" but am fully resolved now to make the best of "leave"."

        People have been saying this, but why exactly? Campaigns change things all the time, without recourse to the populous. Many EU referendums have been either repeated (France, Ireland) or ignored completely (Greece) so why is this one special? Especially since it is clearly causing catastrophic damage. Why should there not be a snap election and a political party runs on annulling the vote? If they are elected, they can do that democratically. Beyond a vague notion of Brexit, what is the mandate for the referendum? Leaving the common market, freedom of movement, EEA, EFTA, all trade at all, and many other partial options? Since the Leave option isn't a solid thing there is no mandate for any one of those things, and so the question is anything but resolved. Would the knuckle-draggers who want no Muslims (they do exist, and have been on the telly) be happy with EEA membership with freedom of movement? Or is that not an option because Leave promised them no people with funny accents living next door?

  8. Mark 85 Silver badge

    Nice of the patent lawyers to bring this up, this soon after the vote. I'm a bit miffed they didn't bring it up earlier, but not surprised.

    But then you won't have to deal with the likes of King Battistelli, either then. Or maybe you will as it'll be another layer of bureaucracy that a lawyer will need to deal with.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Never was so much lost by so many due to one stupid decision.

    1. PNGuinn
      FAIL

      "Never was so much lost by so many due to one stupid decision"

      That would be to have joined in the first place?

      Pollyticians and their bastard children diplomats (or is it the other way round?) never seem to have read or understood any history.

      Probably because they f*&%$ed it up in the first place.

      1. Martin an gof Silver badge

        Re: "Never was so much lost by so many due to one stupid decision"

        That would be to have joined in the first place?

        You can argue that, but you must realise that it is an entirely different thing to say that we should leave now.

        Had I had the vote in 1973 I may well have voted 'no', but then again with the mess the country was in and the raw memories of a war that had finished less than a generation previously, it probably seemed like a good idea at the time. It would have been a much more difficult decision.

        This one was a no-brainer. Pulling out now is a much more difficult and fraught process simply because we have had 40-odd years of integration in the intervening period. On top of that, much as I really don't agree with the amount of power the "financial markets" have over us, the fact is that they do, and because of that we are probably in for a five to ten year period of stagnation at best with those of us still with large amounts of working life ahead of us struggling even to do something as basic as obtain a mortgage. However "broken" the EU is, and however slowly reforms happen (and they did happen) it simply can't be better to run the risk of returning to the UK of the 1970s at best, or the 1920s at worst?

        Anecdotal evidence (i.e. a neighbour) from around where I live says that in the run-up to the vote people simply stopped looking at houses to buy. Estate agents' footfall fell to near zero. The evidence so far is that it isn't improving since the vote.

        I know several people who voted Leave. Some of them are beginning to realise what they did. There is far less "crowing" about the result than might have been expected.

        M.

        1. Nick Ryan Silver badge

          Re: "Never was so much lost by so many due to one stupid decision"

          I know several people who voted Leave. Some of them are beginning to realise what they did. There is far less "crowing" about the result than might have been expected.

          Quite possibly because other than the rabble-roused contingent (generally the readers of the press where absolutely everything is blamed on whatever bogeyman is currently popular to blame: non-"English" (aka immigrants), EU, Irish, gypsies (travellers), communists, whatever - the story has always been the same just with different targets), a lot of folk voted leave because they were unhappy with politicians in general. This was not a great time for such a protest vote.

        2. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

          Re: "Never was so much lost by so many due to one stupid decision"

          I would have voted Leave if I could have, and although I'm happy about the result I'm not crowing. My biggest concern now is that Remainers who won't accept the decision will fuck everything up just to "prove" they were right.

          As for things not improving "since the vote" it's only been 30 hours since the result, FFS! Everyone will be holding their breath for a few weeks at least before making big decisions or changes, it would be foolish to do otherwise.

          The next steps will be to identify a cross-party negotiating team, with business and financial leaders as well as politicians, and start sounding out EU partners to find out if they're going to be pragmatic and helpful, or petty and difficult. A long chat with Norwegian leaders wouldn't hurt either.

          1. nematoad Silver badge
            Childcatcher

            Re: "Never was so much lost by so many due to one stupid decision"

            "A long chat with Norwegian leaders wouldn't hurt either."

            That's already taken place and the short answer from the Norwegians was "Don't go there, you really won't like it."

            I despair, I really thought that the British public had a few more brain cells than they obviously have. Stupid, selfish and short sighted. The people I feel sorry for are the young ones. They will have to suffer the consequences of this appalling mistake. For once in their lives people really should have "Thought of the children."

            1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

              Re: "Never was so much lost by so many due to one stupid decision"

              I really thought that the British public had a few more brain cells than they obviously have. Stupid, selfish and short sighted.

              Way to go. Insult 17 million people just because they don't agree with your point of view. I think that really only demonstrates that it is you who are "selfish and short sighted".

              The people I feel sorry for are the young ones. They will have to suffer the consequences of this appalling mistake.

              On the contrary, they will be the first people in a generation to have the opportunity to fix the mess their parents created. Whether they will actually fix it only time will tell, but at least they have that chance now. Let's hope they don't screw it up.

          2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

            Re: "Never was so much lost by so many due to one stupid decision"

            'My biggest concern now is that Remainers who won't accept the decision will fuck everything up just to "prove" they were right.'

            I doubt it. It's over to Leave now. Let's see what they do, apart from act shocked as, for quite a lot of them, I expect, their sole target was to win the vote and let someone else deal with reality.

        3. This post has been deleted by its author

        4. Stoneshop Silver badge

          Re: "Never was so much lost by so many due to one stupid decision"

          On top of that, much as I really don't agree with the amount of power the "financial markets" have over us, the fact is that they do,

          How much of that power can be attributed to the global financial market, how much to the EU and how much to the Euro (which the UK wasn't part of anyway)?

        5. Chika

          Re: "Never was so much lost by so many due to one stupid decision"

          However "broken" the EU is, and however slowly reforms happen (and they did happen) it simply can't be better to run the risk of returning to the UK of the 1970s at best, or the 1920s at worst?

          We won't. The Britain of the 1970s (or 1920s) had different settings. They had various connections, treaties and arrangements that they had to rid themselves of to join the EEC and leaving the EU now won't automatically bring any of those back. We are starting from scratch, pretty much, and any agreement or arrangement that we do get back from the old days will only be where the other end of that arrangement wishes for it to happen. That's very unlikely for two reasons; first, the length of time and second, the opportunity to screw the crap out of us is likely to be very tempting to any given politician.

          Having said all that, I'm of the opinion that the politicians on both sides of the argument made this happen and that the whole business has been building for years. Let Juncker poke his finger at the UK about all the concessions and opt-outs we negotiated; he isn't interested in why we did it, nor is he really interested in why we are leaving, though he really should be interested because we may only be the first to go down this path. The only way that the EU can save itself from further embarrassment and other countries looking to distance themselves from it is to look at why we have voted to leave and, more importantly, why there was a referendum in the first place.

          But as for the UK, it has to sort out a place for itself in a world that is very different from what it was back when the British Empire was winding down. The governments of the last few decades have sold off the family silver to other countries, the infrastructure never truly recovered from the last World War in some ways and any superiority that we might have had has long since disappeared. Yes, we have (or will do once Article 50 is triggered) taken back control, but of what?

          We live in interesting times, it seems.

      2. ecofeco Silver badge

        Re: "Never was so much lost by so many due to one stupid decision"

        Not sure why the down votes, PNGuinn.

        No matter your personal choice on this issue, truer words were never spoken about history not learned.

        .

    2. Michael Habel Silver badge

      Never was so much lost by so many due to one stupid decision.

      You now realize that freedom ISN'T FREE! But, at least by the end of the short-term you'll will be free of that looks bin in Brussels.

  10. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

    Leaving aside the UPC element, consider the headline. Right now there's no basis for saying that patents and trademarks would need to be re-filed. Like everything else that involves EU influence there'll have to be a decision taken about the status of existing registrations. It may well be that the outcome will be that all existing registrations still stand as applying here after exit and that double registration will only be needed after some future, yet to be announced, date. In fact, I'd say that that's likely for the simple reason that sorting things out is going to be complicated enough without making further complications.

  11. Martin an gof Silver badge

    And what about the Cornish Pasty?

    With reference to a recent story, if patents are a potential problem, what about protected regional status for food items?

    M.

    1. JEDIDIAH
      Mushroom

      Re: And what about the Cornish Pasty?

      Don't f*cking worry about it. Place of origin markings take care of this. I know d*mn well that Vermont Cheddar is not from Cheddar, UK. This stuff doesn't need Pythonesque/Brazil style regulation in order to get sorted.

      If you are proud of your stuff, plant your f*cking flag on it and let the buyer choose.

    2. Baldy50

      Re: And what about the Cornish Pasty?

      The EU employs three different protected status schemes, which provide differing levels and types of protection. Like the Protected Designation of Origin (PDO): this designation covers products that are "produced, processed and prepared" in a specific area, using a particular, usually traditional, method.

      The only really decent Cornish pasty I have ever eaten were made as a special treat by a Cornish born friend using a family recipe and they were out of this world.

      However every pre packaged shop bought one I have had the distinct displeasure of consuming has had a pitiful amount of filling and way too much pastry, tasted pretty bland as well, some bakery ones OK ish but still way too much pastry.

      So even if It's called a Cornish pasty but It's crap it still gets to use the designation as Cornish because it was made there, another area of the UK could make a something similar to a Cornish pasty and be far better tasting because they're not living off the laurels of a preconceived idea that the name on the label means quality and also by a responsible manufacturer wanting It's product to be sought out because of It's quality

      I'd rather the basic standards were a little better for the fast/convenience food we purchase, just because something is made in a specific region doesn't guarantee it will be the best product.

      The article refers to 'the worldwide rape of Cheddar cheese'!

      Is there any legal obligation for supermarkets to state where cheddar cheese is made yet?

      The Royal Association of British Dairy Farmers has called for clearer labelling many times and although most cheddar not made in that region comes from Ireland some comes from Latvia and New Zealand, about forty percent of UK consumption.

      I'm not saying they can't make a decent product but in this case alone the EU failed the consumer and if I knew that a particular product could be produced nearer to home just as well or better would boycott the one from afar and encourage others to do so.

      The carbon footprint of some products are ridiculously high and maybe a label showing how green a product is with regards to this issue should be implemented in the wake of Brexit!

      If It's made abroad because of very cheap labour and then wastes a shit load of energy to get it here I'd like to know.

      If any disgruntled EU country decide to play hard ball about imports we have the distinct upper hand as they rely on us more, we buy more from them than they do from us.

      Not every bottle of French wine is to my liking regardless of their reputation, German engineering Isn't always the best, cylinder head casting faults not covered by VW, the crazy stupid idea by German engineers of one of the Mini models by putting the air intake far too low and water getting sucked in, also not covered by them.

      Not all Cumberland sausages are alike and in my opinion Newbolds are the best, pork pies too, they used to do a very nice Scotch egg far tastier than any pre packed shop bought ones, so does it have to come from Scotland to be good!

      So as far as 'protected regional status' goes it doesn't really mean as much as it should.

      In the case of cheddar the British cheese board has had more to do with the quality of the product to allow it to be called cheddar than this EU PRS accreditation malarkey.

      I prefer Cheshire, Lancashire or Caerphilly cheese on cheese on toast to cheddar mostly so was a bit amused when in the middle of Delamere forest at a café and the only option was cheddar, what is it with Gouda was it just a case of 'we need something to bulk up a sandwich but not alter the flavour of the filling in any way'?

      Some of the cheaper supermarket chains have some pretty rubbish makes of cheddar, very little flavour and most likely imported, only just reaching the minimum requirement to be called cheddar and until we change how just being packaged here is not being made here is clearly shown on products abuses will continue.

      Cheddar cheese is produced worldwide the US, Canada but It's still called cheddar and the Americans do like their cheese, cheddar has become more popular in France but the proper cheddar that is!

      So I think if you expect any country in the EU or anywhere else to respect our culinary treasures or industry over a profit your as nutty as me.

      Brexit gives the UK governments an opportunity to fix some import mistakes in favour of UK jobs, if any have the balls to do something about this type of issue.

  12. Notrub

    I've spent the last 4 months campaigning vigorously for Remain, and seen very little input from any of my friends. I awoke yesterday to a barrage of Facebook posts complaining about the result.

    Today it's a barrage of posts about oh well, it's democratic, let's respect the result and move on.

    Apathy or what?

    For starters, arguing that it was democratic is flawed - not when the campaign was as one-sided as it was with the sole source of information for many (the papers), so one-sided and clearly pushing their own agenda. It didn't help that politicians who've used the EU as a convenient scapegoat for decades were in charge of defending Remain.

    But more importantly - it's not over. There are several paths ahead.

    The government could ignore the vote - they won't, and imo it would be worse if they did - all that would happen is that they'd be kicked out in the next GE and replaced with a more eurosceptic bunch.

    They could proceed down a route to negotiate membership of the EEA, but given that their chances of getting this without Freedom of Movement is as likely as a free-range hen laying an egg in your egg cup, I cannot see how this will silence the voices that called for Leave.

    So, the only solution likely to appease the hard-core Leave brigade is total withdrawal - but I know many voted Leave on the basis that we'd end up like Norway - if the full economic implications of a full withdrawal from the EEA were laid out I think a large number of Leavers would be having second thoughts. (Note quite a few already are!)

    I don't believe the government has been given a mandate to take the 3rd option, so to me it is clear that we need a second referendum that presents 3 options not 2.

    1) Remain

    2) Leave EU, join EEA, taking the best terms we can which may include Freedom of Movmement etc.

    3) Leave EEA.

    Get people to rank their preference. Only THEN would we have a result the government could move forward with.

    I believe it is worth still fighting for this.

    1. GreggS

      It also doesn't help when MP's come on T'telly saying they've had emails from their constituents along the lines of; "I wanted to remain but voted leave as a protest vote and didn't expect leave to win."

      1. sabroni Silver badge

        re: I wanted to remain but voted leave as a protest vote and didn't expect leave to win

        As Stewart Lee said about voting UKIP, "like shitting your hotel bed as a protest against bad service, then realising you now have to sleep in a shitted bed."

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Complete Tosh!!

    I've said it before and I'll say it again, it works for BOTH sides to reach an amicable agreement regarding Brexit.

    It does no-one any favours to simply cut off the UK. It would be just as disastrous for EU countries if agreements which allow for the continuation of trade between the UK and the EU on MUTUALLY favourable terms were not reached.

    All these doom and gloom worst case headline are complete tosh!

    1. Chika
      Coat

      Re: Complete Tosh!!

      All these doom and gloom worst case headline are complete tosh!

      Yes, but that sort of headline sells.

      Rather depressing really. Just shows how low the press have sunk.

    2. CCCP

      Re: Complete Tosh!!

      @AC

      "It would be just as disastrous.." - not quite.

      EU share of UK exports is 38-48% (HMRC, Nov'14-Apr'16). However, UK is only 7.1% of German and 7.2% of French exports (OEC, 2014). That's not really an even starting point for negotiations.

    3. maffski

      Re: Complete Tosh!!

      Yep. Company that makes money from patent applications says we should make more patent applications.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: It does no-one any favours to simply cut off the UK.

      But it would be suicidal to the EU to make it look like a major economy can just leave and there be no repercussions. The EU will be thinking purely of itself in any negotiations, if they can fuck us over without costing themselves too much they will.

    5. nematoad Silver badge
      Unhappy

      Re: Complete Tosh!!

      I'm not sure that that is how it will pan out. We have irritated the other members for years and by this vote has really rubbed their noses in it.

      Don't expect any favours from the others, hurt feelings are one thing but the European Commission is certain to take into account the possibility of other countries trying the same trick. It would not surprise me if the EC play hard-ball "Pour encourager les autres."

    6. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Complete Tosh!!

      "It does no-one any favours to simply cut off the UK. It would be just as disastrous for EU countries if agreements which allow for the continuation of trade between the UK and the EU on MUTUALLY favourable terms were not reached."

      Try telling that to Junker.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Complete Tosh!!

        Try telling that to Junker.

        Doesn't matter what you tell Juncker, he only listens to his own vanity.

    7. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Complete Tosh!!

      Yes it works for both sides to reach an amicable agreement.

      But the positions are not quite symmetric.

      The EU 28 population was 508 millions in 2014 including 64 for the UK. So the EU 27 will be 444 and the UK will be on its own. Posting from the continent, it is sad to see you leave but I think we'll do just fine without you. Since a majority thinks the same in the UK, I can just wish you good luck.

      The negotiation will be lengthy if the 27 use the tactics used by the UK in many EU negotiations in the past... It may be harsh if some try to make a point like with Greece... or like Brexit campaigners (brutal critiscism during the campaign may not put the other parties in amicable mood).

      Besides EU, the UK will need to re-negotiate everything with the rest of the world too. Perhaps starting to train negotiators and collecting tax money to pay them would be good.

      New jobs: reimporting some of the Brussel bureaucraty... Feeding lawyers (not what the average Brexit voter hoped for I guess). Good luck with that.

  14. Notrub

    "It would be just as disastrous for EU countries if agreements which allow for the continuation of trade between the UK and the EU"

    I've seen this argument so many times and it's barking completely up the wrong tree. It's a straw man. Nobody in Remain has EVER claimed that the EU would cease trading with the UK.

    Firstly, trade will continue even if we leave the EEA. All that would happen then is some tariffs would automatically come into operation on both sides in the absence of an agreement to the contrary. This won't stop trade but it would make goods more expensive.

    BUT the IMPORTANT thing is what manufacturers, who produce goods for sale across the EU, think about the whole thing. If they base their factory within the EU there are fewer barriers to trade - this isn't just tariffs, regulatory frameworks are more important. So any company producing goods in the UK may start looking to relocate - it won't be a sudden thing but it will certainly start weighting decisions on where companies invest in the future. On this note you should note that the leading Brexit economist admitted that Leaving would mean the END of UK manufacturing. It won't be sudden, but expect a long slow line of announcements over the next 3-5 years.

    Similarly with our Financial services which have prospered globally on their ability to sell themselves as a gateway into the EU. Again, the downfall won't be overnight, but slowly but surely companies will start to favour other countries.

    These are the reasons that Moody's has already set the outlook for the UK to negative.

    1. Martin an gof Silver badge

      any company producing goods in the UK may start looking to relocate - it won't be a sudden thing but it will certainly start weighting decisions on where companies invest in the future

      Are you saying, for example, that next time Ford is deciding between (say) Spain and (say) the UK to be the production centre of the new model (say) Fiesta, Spain will get the work? Sounds about right to me.

      M.

    2. JC_

      "So any company producing goods in the UK may start looking to relocate - it won't be a sudden thing but it will certainly start weighting decisions on where companies invest in the future."

      Anyone want to hazard a guess about how long it will take Airbus (EADS) to decide that manufacturing wings in Wales and then flying them to Southern France is rather more hassle than simply manufacturing them in Southern France? It won't be the toughest sell to get a few key people to swap Flintshire for le Midi.

      1. Martin an gof Silver badge

        I think the Airbus thing is different - it's not an EU project, it's a commercial venture. The main problem will come if Airbus can't easily move people around the factories, or if tariffs intervene. They already deal with currency fluctuations...

        ...or if it just becomes too much hassle to put the A380 wings on a barge. I also hear that the runway they use for the other components is barely long enough and can't be extended. I'd think these two issues would be bigger drivers for a move (and that could be a move within the UK) than most other things.

        M.

    3. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

      Moody's actual statement

      These are the reasons that Moody's has already set the outlook for the UK to negative.

      Not exactly true.

      Their statement said "Moody's expects a negative impact on the economy unless the UK government manages to negotiate a trade deal that largely replicates its current access to the Single Market." (my italics)

      and they confirmed that "Britain would remain on an AA+ rating, three years after it cut it from AAA"

  15. Uberseehandel

    Most Businesses file at National & EU Offices

    When I had dealings with IP lawyers, they always advised filing in each individual EU state as well as in Munich (Patent) and Alicante (Trademark). So not much changes?

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Alert

    Forget Norway.

    Full disclosure: I am from Austria, so from the EU, so not unbiased.

    Now: The Brexit is a godsend for many of the governments, that are under pressure from right populists (Let me just name Germany, France and Sweden): By royally (pun intended) fucking the Brexiters hard, dry and raw we have the chance to show the people: "This is what happens, if you vote them."

    Don't make the mistake of thinking, that today's ruling class looks at European issues with a European's eye.

    And as a Bonus: Whoever want's to cherry-pick his EU commitment in the future will most likely go a bit easier.

    All the best from the continent -

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Forget Norway.

      And if politicians do this they will harm their own economies, too.

      The whole reason the EU is starting to look like a house of cards is because politicians have been playing politics instead of doing what is best for those they are supposed to represent.

    2. Matt Bryant Silver badge
      FAIL

      Re: AC Re: Forget Norway.

      ".....By royally (pun intended) fucking the Brexiters hard, dry and raw we have the chance to show the people: "This is what happens, if you vote them."...." Yes, very telling that the response of the EUSSR hierarchy - especially the Petit Napoleon Junker - is to want to intimidate those still under their control into forgetting any democratic decision. So much for egalite, fraternite that was supposed to be the core of the "European Dream", their real colours are revealed - domination by fear and repression. Enjoy your future of no choice, lEUsers, and less and less democracy as Brussels tightens its grip!

  17. herman Silver badge

    Another doom and gloom preacher. I'm old enough to remember the the time before the UK was a member of the EU. The world won't stop turning. Everything will carry on just fine.

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      "I'm old enough to remember the the time before the UK was a member of the EU."

      So am I but I also remember that it was a member of another trading group, EFTA and also that the Commonwealth was a stronger trading group.

      1. nematoad Silver badge
        Unhappy

        Rose tinted?

        "I'm old enough to remember the the time before the UK was a member of the EU."

        Well if you are old enough to remember the UK pre-EU, I am, then you may also remember Harold Wilson and "The pound in your pocket" quote.

        Things weren't better then they were just different.

    2. tfewster Silver badge

      I'm old enough too, but I remember that Britain was pretty shit in the 70s. The Onion summed it up nicely:

      http://www.theonion.com/graphic/case-and-against-uk-leaving-eu-53147

      Regarding the doom and gloom - If you pulled your head out of the sand, you might be able to hear the many heads of state, politicians, business leaders, economists etc. saying Brexit would be a bad idea. Hey, if you know so much more than all those "experts", why aren't YOU running the country?

      By the way, good luck in finding a plumber, doctor or nurse if you need one in the future - Not enough British youth are interested in learning trades. But they won't be delivery drivers or crop pickers either, as those jobs are apparently beneath them. Or were you going along with Priti Patel, who wants to bring in Indians to replace the Europeans?

      Actually, what were you planning? I've not heard any positive plans yet from the Brexiters, apart from spending the mythical £350m several times over. You've got what you wanted, now you have to take responsibility for your actions.

      1. JEDIDIAH
        Facepalm

        MD a Trade? WTF?

        I dunno, if Brits don't want to become doctors you seriously messed up somewhere. So you lot like to brag about the NHS and then you abuse your medical professionals? Not that I would be surprised. Americans are huge ingrates about that too. They don't have appreciation for ANY sort of professional and expect everything for free. Everyone seems to devalue anyone else's job but their own.

        Plumbing can be a lucrative gig and is hard to offshore. The same goes for nurses and doctors. Being an MD should be a plum job.

        1. tfewster Silver badge
          Thumb Up

          Re: MD a Trade? WTF?

          You're right, I shouldn't have called it a "trade", but it's an example of something that takes a long time to train in. My niece is training as a doctor, but there aren't enough like her to staff the NHS without poaching doctors from abroad.

          20 years ago, it was hard to get hold of a plumber and they charged accordingly. True, they've been undercut by Europeans filling demand, and the job has been made easier by plastic snap-fit pipes, but even if the current crop of wannabe web-designers, market traders and politicians switched to plumbing, they wouldn't be competent in 2 years time.

          Britain has become dependent on immigration over 10-20 years and reversing that trend won't happen in 2 years.

        2. Martin an gof Silver badge

          Re: MD a Trade? WTF?

          Plumbing can be a lucrative gig and is hard to offshore

          But it is also cut-throat, undervalued and risky. I used to be a self-employed electrician (Part P) and while the hourly rate looks good the pitfalls made the job as a whole (i.e. single trader, domestic only) pretty tiresome:

          • Clients who expect free consultations and call-outs at any time of the day, night or holiday
          • Quibbles about the smallest things; "yes, I know I agreed to X, but now I don't like it"
          • Quibbles about the "making good" (always the hardest part of the job in my experience)
          • Constant, constant pressure to cut corners and "bend" regulations, particularly the amount of time it can take to make all the required tests, checks and peripheral updates before and after a piece of work
          • Keeping up to date with those regulations
          • Keeping testing kit maintained and calibrated
          • Professional body membership fees
          • Insurance
          • The ever-present "my mate says Y, so when you say Z you are wrong"
          • Late payment of bills
          • Difficulty getting lines of credit with suppliers as a small company
          • Ridiculous bank charges for taking credit / debit cards (when I was doing it, a portable terminal cost about a day's work in rent every month)
          • Customers who can now go to Screwfix and buy the parts at the same price as you can. When I started I was able to buy things slightly cheaper than "the man on the street", add a small markup such that they were still cheaper than B&Q or Homebase and make a small profit. When I finished, this was almost impossible and indeed I had several jobs where clients insisted on supplying all their own parts

          There is still money to be made in the business, but realistically you need at least a two or three man team who can tender for jobs or contracts with housebuilders, landlords and housing associations. The odd-jobbing domestic electrician (and plumber I suspect) is under pressure and the only people who can afford to do it are those who are willing to work at the lowest rates, cash-in-hand and perhaps bend the rules slightly. It's possibly worse for electricians because people seem to understand "must be Gas Safe registered" and accept it much more than "must be certified by a Part P registered electrician".

          M.

          (rant over - I got out and got myself a salaried job some years ago)

          1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

            Re: MD a Trade? WTF?

            The odd-jobbing domestic electrician (and plumber I suspect) is under pressure and the only people who can afford to do it are those who are willing to work at the lowest rates, cash-in-hand and perhaps bend the rules slightly.

            If there's a need for the services, then there will always be people who can provide them. To a certain degree the situation with plumbers is mirroring that with TV & radio repairs. When TVs were expensive and broke down a lot, there were lots of repair shops. As they became more reliable, and largely disposable, the need for repairs pretty much vanished. Repairs that do happen are now plug-in modules that get sent back to a central factory, there's little demand for workshop-level component diagnosis and replacement.

            Years ago many plumbing calls were to replace washers, unblock drains, etc. Modern ceramic taps have a much greater washer-free life, and as you say modern plastic piping removes the need for brazing/soldering skills, and DIY is possible for many things (not gas-related, of course). For bigger problems like leaks I think most people today would start by calling their insurance company, and the insurers would have deals with larger plumbing companies to handle such problems.

            Other changes to modern life have also had an impact. You don't need a jobbing plumber or electrician in your village who can pop round on his bike, because they all have vans and can come from a larger business in a nearby town. They have cellphones, websites & answering machines. It changes the whole business model.

    3. Tomato42 Silver badge
      Stop

      wait aren't you so against ID cards because they remind you of those food stamps from those "glorious" times?

      yes, the times when you were young were much better, but it's because you were young, you had the vigour to learn new stuff, strength to overcome obstacles, not because they were better times

      now forgive us youngsters while we're working on beating yet another all time world-wide low for people living under the poverty line and illiteracy rates

  18. Nifty

    Will the EU have to re-file it's patents to use them in the UK?

  19. Deltics

    Sorry, but this is just more Sour Grapes/Uninformed FUD

    From the European Patent Office information regarding Unitary Patents:

    <quote>

    The unitary patent will co-exist with national patents and with classical European patents. Patent proprietors will in future be able to choose between various combinations of classical European patents and unitary patents, for example:

    a unitary patent for the 25 Member States of the European Union which participate in the unitary patent scheme;

    together with

    a classical European patent taking effect in one or more EPC Contracting States which do not participate in the scheme, such as Spain, Italy, Switzerland, Turkey, Norway, Iceland, etc.

    </quote>

    In other words, how to deal with European states that are not actual members of the EU has already been taken into account w.r.t existing European states that are not actual members of the EU. So you will just need to add "United Kingdom" to that list of such states.

    Sure, it may not be quite as straightforward as just adding to a list, but it sure as heck is not the END OF THE WORLD scenario being portrayed here. Only "as we know it".

  20. El_Fev

    Wow the dummy spitting is funny to watch

    Wow there's alot of butt hurt remain supporters here, you want some lemon with that bitter??

    1. nematoad Silver badge
      Mushroom

      Re: Wow the dummy spitting is funny to watch

      "Wow there's alot of butt hurt remain supporters here, you want some lemon with that bitter??"

      Just stop and think, if you can, why are so many people in despair at what the "Great British Public" have just gone and done?

      Could it be that people are genuinely worried about the future of the country outside of the EU? Or could it be the prospect of the country disintegrating given that the Scots feel that they are being dragged out against their expressed will? The spectacle of politicians on the Leave side quickly moving to disavow the claims plastered all over the campaign bus. "£350 million a week, where are you?" Or is it even the fear that the next Prime Minister will be a mendacious, self-serving buffoon who puts his own ambition before that of the country? Just look at how that worked out for Gordon Brown.

      If you could just stop crowing about your "victory" and start to actually think about what has been done then you might be less dismissive of people's fears and dismay. Though judging by your tone I won't hold my breath.

  21. Matt Bryant Silver badge
    FAIL

    OMG!!!!!

    Quick, man the lifeboats! We're DOOOOOMMED!!!

    Seriously? Couldn't the ElReg Remain Team think of anything better? Please remind them we successfully managed patents long before the EU was even dreamt up.

  22. Naselus

    Wait, an IP article

    ...not being written by Andrew Orlowski? I'd have thought he'd be all over this.

    Oh, wait, no, he backed Leave, didn't he. In order to protect our patents, no doubt. Good work, Andy.

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Patent attorney here....

    ...sorry, this article is pretty much totally wrong. The European Patent Office is not an EU institution, and non-EU states like Turkey are participating members. Brecht therefore has no legal impact on it. It's true we are probably out of the Unitary Patent but that's not a problem since the UK element of a standard EP patent is pretty much the cheapest on the continent (no translation and low renewal fees). The Unitary Patent exists alongside normal EP patents so we just become one of a bundle of refuseniks and outsiders, including Spain and turkey.

    So El Reg, please don't try to eff up UK prospects by providing misinformation to Overseas employers and investors.

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Patent attorney here...

    ....posted a reply explaining why a lot of this article is wrong, but sadly it doesn't seem to have been posted. Come on El Reg, you are better than this.

    I'm short, the European patent office is not an EU body, so we don't leave. The unified patent is an EU agreement on bundling some euroean patents into one, and we now probably won't be part of that, but for reasons explained in the quashed post, that's not really the end of the world.

    As a remain voter, I think Brexit is insane, but let's not make things worse by scaring off investors and employers will ill-informed scaremongering like this...

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Maybe we can create closer ties with Russia. They already dump a lot of investments our way, so now that we have distanced ourselves from the whip crackers in Europe we could maybe get on better terms with Putin. Their country isnt exactly in brilliant shape either, but think of the caviar and the vodka we can send up to Scotland to keep the Glaswegians happy.

    The enemy of my enemy and all that.

  26. strum Silver badge

    >I'm not saying they can't make a decent product [Cheddar] but in this case alone the EU failed the consumer

    The EU couldn't do anything. "Cheddar" was already an international product, before UK joined, so it couldn't be protected.

    1. Baldy50

      I'm not going to even bother posting a link, believe me real cheddar comes from England and originates from a specific region of England, the difference is in the taste. Try some Cathedral City compared to cheap imports!

  27. Gigabob

    gigabob@comcast.net

    Crikely Blighty - Now you'll have to file your patents in German, French and Italian - English need not apply. But who really cares anyway? In a go it your own, fully independent England, who needs patent protection for coal mining?

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2019