3 Dec
2019

A bold new era for TMview; improving the world’s largest free trademark search engine

  • EUIPO recently launched a significant upgrade to its TMview search platform
  • It is currently in beta release, and includes more advanced search filters
  • In exclusive guest post, EUIPO offers 11 tips to make most of the new TMview

The EU Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) recently launched a beta version of TMview, which boasts a number of significant improvements to the multinational trademark search platform. In an exclusive guest post, the team behind the platform share tips on making the most of TMview’s new features – and call for practitioners to give their feedback to ensure it meets the needs of the trademark community.

Guest analysis

Nearly 10 years ago, TMview took its first steps into the online world. With trademark data from just a handful of EU intellectual property offices, it began rather modestly. Today, it is the largest free trademark database in the world, with over 53 million trademarks from 68 participating IP offices worldwide. In 2012, it was joined by its sister tool DesignView, which offers free design search, and which today has nearly 15 million designs.

Both TMview and DesignView offer support to 20 different electronic filing systems, and their databases are incorporated into the EUIPO’s IP Enforcement Portal, helping in the fight against counterfeiting. Between them, they have had more than 70 million searches since launch. In recent years, they have gone global. Both tools now contain data from more non-EU IP offices than EU ones, with each available in the official language of every participating office.

Of course, to make progress, you cannot stand still. Together with experts from the intellectual property offices of the EU and user associations, EUIPO has been working to improve TMview and Designview since 2016, by improving usability and data quality. Through a series of twice-yearly working group meetings, the focus has been on improving the tools, starting with TMview. Users were at the heart of the improvement process, with an approach based on design thinking. Need-finding techniques and rigorous prototype testing helped the project team to better approximate the end user mindset.

To that end, a beta version of the new TMview platform was launched on 1 October 2019. This is a joint “work in progress” which the EUIPO is sharing with the user community. Central to the success of the project will be user feedback, so all comments (positive or otherwise) are extremely welcome. You can give feedback by clicking on the button at the bottom of each page.

However, if you’ve just clicked on the beta version of TMview for the first time, or you’re thinking about taking it for a test drive, we’d like to share 11 tips that might help you get the most out of the new interface and functionalities. The platform is still the same TMview you’re used to – but it does more and has a range of different options to make your search experience quicker, easier and better.  

1. Use the “Contains” option

TMview beta enhances a “Contains” mode for searching trademark denomination. This means that search results now include trademarks for which the searched word(s) are found either partly or entirely within the trademark denomination.

2. Customise your basic search

Users can now choose which fields appear on the frontpage, and has the added ability to ‘pin’ search fields from the advanced search and move them to the front page. By customising the front-page, users can save time and don’t need to open the Advanced Search menu each time when looking for a particular trademark.

3. Better definition of Nice and Vienna classes

TMview beta makes the searching of figurative elements as well as goods and services more accurate. For example, users can now search for trademarks defining the combination of classes (ie, Class 5 and Class 43, Class 5 not Class 6).

4. Repeat older searches with one click

TMviewbeta keeps a record of your past searches on the frontpage, meaning users can keep track of their previous 30 searches and repeat them easily.

5. Automatic ordering of results

When searching using word(s), TMview beta automatically orders the results based on the degree of similarity to the search term(s). This means that trademarks with identical denominations will appear on top of the result list.

6. Use the dynamic filters

TMview beta places available filters alongside the search results. This means, in practical terms, that users can use filters to size down search results quickly and find the trademarks they are looking for faster.

7. Access more information from the results page

Once in the results page, users can get more information about the listed trademarks just by expanding the row. More specifically, the expanded view provides information about the scope of trademark protection (ie, goods and services terms) which can also be translated. In addition, the expiration date is shown and there is even a direct link to the online repository of the national or regional IP Office in question.

8. See the stats

One of the most significant changes is an additional view in the results page which features four tabs with statistical information – including a chart of trademark statuses, trademark types, territories and the classes of listed applications.

9. Use the trademark images for instant search

If users need to search using a trademark image found in TMview, all you have to do is hover over the image and click on the “Search for similar images button”. There’s no need to download the image to your computer anymore.

10. Group and compare the results you are most interested in

From the results page, select up to nine trademarks that you want to compare visually, and click on the “compare” button. TMView beta will show them side by side for easier inspection. You can even translate and export the selected trademarks from the comparison view.

11. More export possibilities

TMview beta has enhanced export functionality. It’s now possible to export in Word format, and you can also select between different Word layouts.

In conclusion, then, the EUIPO, in cooperation with the national and regional IP offices of the EU, are constantly working to improve the quality of data that is provided through the TMview and DesignView platforms. Since January 2019, a data inspection and correction mechanism has been put in place to address any inconsistencies. When an issue is found, the relevant participating office is informed anda correction is made. The result of this cooperation means that the services provided by TMview and DesignView improve every day.

For WTR readers that take a spin on the TMview beta platform, you can send any feedback – both good and bad – to the EUIPO’s TMview department by email ([email protected]).

Tim Lince

Author | Senior reporter

[email protected]

Tim Lince