Finland makes a move on mark registration


The Finnish National Board of Patents and Registration has accepted Finland's first national registration for a moving mark. The mark consists of 12 pictures that describe different phases of the motion of Suomen Posti Oyj's (Finland Post Corporation) logo.

This follows on from the registration last November of the Berggren Oy Ab logo depicting a flying bird as a Community trademark for services in Classes 35, 41 and 42 of the Nice Classification. Article 4 of Community Trademark Regulation provides that a Community trademark may consist of any sign capable of being represented graphically, provided that such sign is capable of distinguishing the goods or services of its owner. However, the requirement that the mark must be represented graphically and published on paper format has limited the registration of non-traditional marks.

Berggren fulfilled the graphic representation requirement by submitting a slide of six pictures deconstructing the movement into separate stages and including the following description:

"The mark comprises six still pictures representing a moving image (the numerical indications do not belong to the mark). Picture number 1 is the starting point with a stylized green coloured bird starting to open its wings. In the subsequent pictures the bird's wing/s is/are opening progressively to the highest position which is shown in the final picture number 6. The process described above then repeats itself beginning from picture 1."

It is likely that applications for non-traditional marks will increase as soon as trademark offices abandon the requirement of publication on paper format and accept electronic publication. Colour marks have already found their place among traditional trademarks and the European Court of Justice has affirmed the registrability of sound marks (see Für Elise decision creates a new sound in trademark law).

Paula Kunnas, Berggren Oy Ab, Helsinki

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