The 16th annual Oxford International Intellectual Property Moot competition was held at the Law Faculty and Pembroke College from 15-17 March 2018.  Out of 66 written submissions received, 28 teams were invited to compete in the oral rounds in Oxford.  This is the highest number of teams invited in the moot’s history.  Teams from Australia, Canada, China including Hong Kong, France, Germany, India, Malaysia, Singapore, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States gathered in chilly Oxford for three days of intense mooting. 

The problem for the 2018 Moot related to copyright and performers’ rights, with the fact pattern involving a fireworks display and a dance and spoken word presentation by three cockatoos. The case before the Supreme Court of Erewhon was narrowed to four questions in relation to the meaning of “dramatic work”, the test for authorship, assessment of non-literal copying, and whether an animal-only presentation can constitute a “performance” for the purposes of copryight law. Marking of the submissions was conducted by a team of practitioners and research students overseen by Catriona Smith (Wiggin LLP). 

After two and a half days of intense competition, University of Cambridge and University of New South Wales progressed to the Grand Final.  On a snowy Saturday afternoon, both teams mooted in front of a panel of judges comprised of Lord Justice Kitchin, Mr Justice Birss and Mr Justice Carr.  University of New South Wales was eventually named the Allen & Overy winner. 

The winning team, University of New South Wales (Wee-An Tan, Anne Wang and Christina Han), with Lord Justice Kitchin and Nicola Dagg (Allen & Overy)

As part of the Allen & Overy winner prize, the winning team met with David Stone (Partner at London Allen & Overy offices, Deputy High Court Judge in England and Wales, and Quarter-final judge) for a mentoring lunch at Allen & Overy’s Sydney offices. 

Other prizes to note:  The London School of Economics won the 8 New Square Best Written Submission as well as the Highest Ranked Team after the Preliminary Round. The Best Individual Mooter in the Preliminary Rounds was won by Wee-An Tan (University of New South Wales). The David Vaver Spirit of the Moot was awarded to the University of Greenwich. A full list of winners is available on this website.  Judges were impressed with the high quality of mooting in this year’s rounds and this is a testament of the continual strength of the teams. 

The finalists with the Grand Final judges: Lord Justice Kitchin, Julian Niño (Cambridge), Jackson Sirica (Cambridge), Yan Chuan Ng (Cambridge), Mr Justice Colin Birss, Anne Wang (New South Wales), Mr Justice Carr, Wee-An Tan (New South Wales), Christina Han (New South Wales).

The Organising Committee are very grateful to the following for making the 2018 moot happen: Allen & Overy, 8 New Square, CMS, Herbert Smith Freehills, Powell Gilbert, Cambridge University Press, Edward Elgar Publishing, Hart Publishing and Oxford University Press.  We would also like to thank all our moot judges who volunteered their time to come to Oxford to judge the competition. 

For photos of the event, please visit this website

If your university is interested in taking part in next year’s competition, please email the Moot Secretary.  We expect next year’s problem to be published on the moot website in September 2018.