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When plagiarism in design is a more likely the matter of competition than copyright

One Russian publishing house “Azbuka-Attikus” has filed complaint to the Moscow department of Russian Federal Anticompetitive Service (MDFAS) in relation to other publishing house “Eksmo”. According to complaint “Eksmo” has copied design of book covers created by “Azbuka”.

Moscow department has analysed complaint and relevant materials and made conclusion – there is violation of law on protection of competition. It is unfair competition. MDFAS believes “Eksmo” has completely copied the design of book covers created by “Azbuka”. It is about color gamma and some elements of design. The Eksmo’s design is similar to confusion with Azbuka’s design. Such conclusion also has been confirmed by opinion of expert from Regional public organisation “Union of Moscow Designers” in December 2016.

Design created by Azbuka in 2012 is intended for series “World classic”; design created by Eksmo in 2016 is intended for series “Worldwide literature”. “The series relate to the same category of books and distributed in book stores and internet outlets. It is worth to note, that in some stores the books of both publishing houses are located in a close proximity with each other, including placement on one rack, what could leads an ordinary customer to confusion in relation to good and its producer”.