Blog results - found 72
The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit is to consider whether the federal government’s treatment of ‘disparaging’ marks violates the First Amendment. The move, issued as the court vacated last week’s decision on the rejection of a trademark application by Asian American band The Slants, has been labelled a “shock” by the band’s attorney.
The founder of the Asian American dance-rock band behind the application has slammed this week's appeal decision, telling World Trademark Review that he finds the USPTO's treatment of evidence “absurd”.
We talk with key figures from both sides of the dispute, including an IP adviser who claims that he was dismissed from his law firm after alleged pressure from OAPI.
The African Intellectual Property Organisation (OAPI) has suspended a number of lawyers and firms from representing clients at OAPI, in a bid to quell “significant tensions” over its recent decision to join the Madrid Protocol.
The Madrid Protocol came into effect in 17 African countries this week, with Zimbabwe due to join them at the end of next week. Commentators have expressed concern over the enforceability of registrations in a number of nations across the plateau continent.
As further 'Je suis Charlie' trademark applications come to light, trademark offices are having to wrestle with how to deal with them. Concurrently, commercialisation continues apace.
A trademark application has been filed at the Benelux Trademarks Office for ‘Je suis Charlie', the slogan adopted by supporters of free speech and freedom of expression in the wake of last week’s Charlie Hebdo magazine massacre in Paris. As World Trademark Review has previously reported, trademark filings following tragic events is not uncommon, but this represents a different approach to those we have covered before the attempted acquisition of a high-profile slogan which has a positive message at its core.
The ribbon was cut on the 9,000-square-metre expansion of the Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market’s headquarters in Alicante this week, the office entering its third decade of existence with further pledges of “greater efficiency” and “better quality”.
(This article has been updated the new information is italicised at the end of the article) The decision by the UK's Passport Office to reject a passport application because the applicant's signature, which reads 'L Skywalker', infringed a trademark is an unusual incident, and throws up the issue of how stringently passport examiners check trademarks.
The scourge of trademark solicitation scams shows no signs of abating despite industry efforts to clamp down. The ongoing battle to tackle fraudsters, who often create sophisticated disguises that look similar to official IP offices, has been fragmented to date, but a new weapon entered the fray on Monday with the creation of OHIM’s Anti-Fraud Network.
The proposed changes to Canada’s Trademarks Act have proven controversial since they were announced back in March this year, and the final reading of Bill C-31 could reach the House Of Commons as early as next week. However, a number of practitioners are keen to outline the positives.
Brazil set to accept Madrid applications in early 2019; associations being kept “in the dark” over plans
Plans for Brazil to join the Madrid Protocol have been mooted for over a decade now, but evidence suggests it could finally be coming to pass. Talking to World Trademark Review, the president of the Brazilian IP Agents Association reveals that it is expected the Brazilian IP Office will begin accepting international applications early next year but concerns have been raised over the quality of examinations in recent months.
The Venezuelan Patent and Trademark Office has suspended payment of official fees by foreign applicants for the foreseeable future. The situation, which has resulted in services including renewals and changes of ownership grinding to a halt for many brand owners, has been described by one local attorney as “lacking legal basis” and leaving IP owners “in limbo”.
Former OAPI head accused of wrongdoing while in office; court reverses suspensions related to anti-Madrid collective
The former director general of the African Intellectual Property Organisation (OAPI), Paulin Edou Edou, has been accused of signing his own accreditation to be an OAPI trademark agent while still in office, World Trademark Review understands. The allegation surfaced in the same week that OAPI’s High Commission of Appeal annulled a 2016 decision by Edou Edou which suspended two IP attorneys due to their suspected involvement with a group protesting OAPI’s accession to the Madrid Protocol.
USPTO goes after the fakers; experts praise initiative to combat improper specimens, call for further action
The US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has launched a pilot programme to help combat improper specimens on trademark applications. The move comes in the wake of a World Trademark Review investigation which discovered numerous fake specimens by Chinese applicants, with the USPTO confirming there had been a “dramatic increase” in illegitimate filings. This initiative has been welcomed, although one expert calls for the office to go even further.
Democratising trademark data: ambitious call to create non-profit to develop global e-filing standards
In an exclusive guest post for World Trademark Review, the chief executive of IP docketing technology company Alt Legal urges IP offices to work towards, and adopt, universal standards in trademark data and electronics filings. To achieve this, he is calling for the creation of a non-profit organisation tasked with promoting and developing industry best standards in relation to e-filings and trademark databases.
A new study has found that a majority of trademark practitioners rely on free search tools when clearing marks, with a further claim that this growing reliance may be the cause for a rise in infringement. The research highlights the continuing budgetary pressures faced by practitioners, the ongoing improvement of free online search tools, and the increasing need for IP services companies to differentiate themselves from ever-more-sophisticated free alternatives.
New figures show that the US Trademark and Patent Office (USPTO) received over 440,000 new trademark applications in 2017, a rise of more than 13% year on year. Writing for World Trademark Review, USPTO Trademark Commissioner Mary Boney Denison has promised that a “substantial number” of examiners would be hired in 2018 to ensure that the office can handle the increase in application volume effectively.
IP technology company LawPanel has called on national trademark offices to develop software tools that open up data to third-party developers. In comments to World Trademark Review, the company’s chief financial officer claims that through the introduction of application programming interface-driven architecture, such innovation could “fundamentally change the working life of trademark attorneys”. However, he acknowledges that the challenge will be to convince all stakeholders to embrace such change and foresees an opportunity for the International Trademark Association to facilitate the process.
Continuing our rundown of the trademark personalities of 2017, we look at the final selection of figures that have had a profound impact on the industry this year. Be it those who have influenced public dialogue or caused significant disruption (for good or bad), we have chosen the personalities both individuals and entities that we feel have defined the trademark news agenda in the last 12 months.
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