US and China driving international trademark applications, but question mark looms over the pandemic impact

This week’s data analysis tells you everything you need to know about international registrations trends over the years, and gives a first look at the 2020 state of play

US and China driving international trademark applications, but question mark looms over the pandemic impact
As the USPTO expects downturn in trademark revenues, Chinese applicants are helping break filing records
25 Sep 2020

As the USPTO expects downturn in trademark revenues, Chinese applicants are helping break filing records

Trademark filings at the USPTO seem to have recovered to typical levels but there are still questions over whether the activity level of Chinese applicants will be sustained.

Live updates: IP offices implement measures in wake of coronavirus crisis
24 Sep 2020

Live updates: IP offices implement measures in wake of coronavirus crisis

As the novel coronavirus epidemic continues to spread across the globe, WTR provides an updated look at measures that national IP offices have launched in response.


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23 Sep 2020

Decoding the Chinese legal market: what do clients want and whom do they prefer?

With fierce rivalry between domestic and foreign outfits, as well as different types of law firm and agency entities, choosing a partner in China can be a daunting prospect. World Trademark Review gathers exclusive client feedback to assess who is coming out ahead – and why. Read more

23 Sep 2020

Getting creative: when to protect trade dress under trademark or competition law

In the absence of trade dress-specific legislation, rights holders in China must manoeuvre around the Trademark Law and the Anti-unfair Competition Law if they are to protect their unique designs effectively. Read more

23 Sep 2020

Flying high: registry data shows Asia-Pacific filings are skyrocketing

Filing data at the top Asia-Pacific IP offices reveals a region undergoing spectacular growth, accounting for a colossal 80% of trademark activity worldwide last year. Spearheading the effort is China – a nation with increasing influence over its neighbours, which shows no signs of slowing down. Read more

22 Sep 2020

How TikTok Global’s “‘gun to the chest’ negotiation” may change the way that Chinese brands see the United States

ByteDance agreed to form TikTok Global with Oracle and Walmart, but has the Trump administration changed the relationship that Chinese brands will now expect of the United States? Read more


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17 Sep 2020

Fighting the enemy within: how to lessen the risk of internal counterfeiting

Ex-employees from both Louis Vuitton and Hermès have been put on trial in recent weeks for their complicity in counterfeit handbag rings. Read more

8 Sep 2020

Trump trademark approved in Argentina; Beijing IP Court update; Gucci ‘fake not’ collection – news digest

In our latest round-up, we look at outrage over a WWE order about names and likenesses, Bumble announcing plans to go public, how counterfeiting remains a problem on Taobao, and much more. Read more

4 Sep 2020

The TikTok brand has gone global, which is a great feat, but now it faces a reckoning in the US

The video-sharing app is a highly attractive brand for its resonance with the Gen-Z demographic, but its relationship with China and status as a social media giant will create risks for whoever takes it on. Read more

3 Sep 2020

Trademark protection on e-commerce platforms

With the increasing protection of IP rights on e-commerce platforms, trademark registrants’ rights are respected and protected. Read more

Brand management

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3 Sep 2020

Comparative aspects of trademark dilution between the United States and China

A trademark anti-dilution system protects famous trademarks against blurring, tarnishment or degradation. Read more

3 Sep 2020

Strategies to establish trademark fame in China

Aligned marketing and legal strategy to build, defend and strengthen brand reputation We live in a world surrounded by brands. Read more

3 Sep 2020

Trademark application process in mainland China

As China becomes an important market for foreign brands, securing a trademark in China early will smooth the entry into the Chinese market. Read more

20 Aug 2020

Five ways to beat the odds and protect your brand in Asia

We shine the spotlight on some of the biggest challenges facing brands in Asia and reveal what steps WTR’s trademark elite – from Beijing to New Delhi – are taking to overcome them. Read more

Enforcement and Litigation

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3 Sep 2020

Several issues to be aware of in the battle against bad-faith trademarks in China

This update examines several issues of interest in the fight against bad-faith trademark applications in China, including whether the recently amended Article 4 of the Trademark Law can be used to oppose or invalidate a trademark if there is sufficient evidence of bad faith. Read more

3 Sep 2020

Recent developments in patent litigation

As one of the youngest patent systems in the world, China’s patent system and policies are developing rapidly and already have an increasingly strong influence globally. Read more

3 Sep 2020

The keys to success in patent litigation

China is becoming a preferred battlefield for patent infringement litigation worldwide. Read more

25 Aug 2020

Criminal case involving L’Oréal’s KIEHL’S mark among exemplary IP rights cases of 2019

This decision of the Shanghai High Court in a case involving the sale of fake Kiehl’s cosmetics on online Taobao stores by a counterfeiting syndicate provides valuable guidance for future similar cases. Read more


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3 Sep 2020

Sino-US Economic and Trade Agreement: IP and the pharma industry

The Economic and Trade Agreement between China and the United States was signed on 15 January 2020. Read more

5 Aug 2020

China ranks third globally for Madrid filings as applications rise: the story behind the trends

With Madrid trademark filings in China increasing by 36% year on year, we take a deep dive into the key trends and takeaways on such a significant rise. Read more

3 Aug 2020

Geographical indications increasingly important to China, but challenges ahead for EU owners

China is signalling serious dedication towards enhancing the protection of geographical indications (GIs), so WTR explores recent developments and the proactive actions that should be taken by international GI owners. Read more

31 Jul 2020

Jeff Bezos on fake goods; Dyson counterfeiters jailed; trademarks at risk in Kenya – news digest

In our latest round-up, we look at INTA’s Unreal Campaign going virtual, how counterfeiting is on the rise in India, Romania upgrading its e-filing system, and much more. Read more

Law Firms

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22 Sep 2020

Cost over quality: what in-house counsel and foreign law firms are looking for in a Chinese partner

WTR speaks to a range of market experts to uncover the key qualities that they look for in their Chinese trademark counsel – and why international practices may need to adapt if they are to remain competitive. Read more

28 Aug 2020

Economies are battered but many major offices set for record trademark numbers

As the data continues to be updated, we are able to get a better understanding of the extent of the coronavirus’ impact on the trademark ecosystem. Read more

28 Jul 2020

Massive anti-counterfeiting operation in China; Ukraine fake pharma crackdown; Coronavirus band trademark – news digest

In our latest round-up, we look at how American consumers are changing their brand preferences during covid-19, a bid for the Brooks Brothers brand, the Beijing IP Court invalidating a 3D trademark, and much more. Read more

20 Jul 2020

“Everything has returned to normal” – China trademark filings increase in first half of 2020

As the China National IP Administration reports “a stable trend” in IP development during the first half of 2020, WTR takes a closer look at what the data reveals about the current IP environment in China. Read more

IP Offices

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21 Sep 2020

China eclipses United States in latest Asia-Pacific filing figures – with Alibaba top of the pile on home turf

WTR crunches the numbers at the leading Asia-Pacific trademark offices to reveal the extent of China’s emergence as a regional superpower, with Alibaba leading the way among both agent and corporate filers at its home registry. Read more

3 Sep 2020

What you need to know about the suspension of examinations in trademark administrative cases in China

Rights holders need to have an understanding of the nuances of examination procedures, including the circumstances in which examinations can be suspended in trademark administrative cases. Read more

3 Sep 2020

Patentability of AI innovations

Thanks to the rapid development of AI technology and continuous reflection on its commercial values, patent applications related to AI technology have become a hot topic. Read more

12 Aug 2020

Making sense of China’s case-by-case examination principle in trademark refusal reviews

The application of the case-by-case examination approach in trademark refusal reviews raises a number of concerns and questions for applicants Read more


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19 Aug 2020

The potential pitfalls of livestream e-commerce and how Chinese authorities are dealing with them

In the final instalment of this series examining the livestreaming phenomenon in China, WTR explores the potential for running afoul of advertising and unfair competition laws. Read more

18 Aug 2020

How Chinese counterfeiters and replica sellers are using livestream e-commerce

An exclusive WTR investigation uncovers the livestream e-commerce platforms being used to sell counterfeit and replica goods, the types of product being sold, and how sellers are avoiding detection and hiding evidence from the authorities. Read more

13 Aug 2020

Livestream e-commerce: risks and opportunites in China’s latest brand marketing craze

China has taken to livestreaming to drive e-commerce sales and encourage consumerism. However, with opportunity comes risk, and a whole host of brand challenges have emerged. Read more

4 Aug 2020

Drop shipping sites are flooding influencers with counterfeit goods: what brands should do

As even high-profile influencers such as Kylie and Kendal Jenner are caught by drop shipping scams, here are the steps that brands can take to reduce the risks. Read more

Portfolio Management

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3 Sep 2020

Lost in translation: protecting Chinese-language marks

If a Chinese company goes to another country to sell products or provide services, it is advisable for it to use a trademark in the language of that country in addition to its own Chinese-language mark. Read more

14 Aug 2020

Shandong High Court awards Rmb500,000 in damages in case involving BORDEAUX GI collective mark

In a landmark case that is expected to serve as a point of reference for the protection of GIs in China, the Conseil Interprofessionnel du Vin de Bordeaux has successfully enforced its GI collective trademark BORDEAUX波尔多 in a civil lawsuit in the Shandong Province. Read more

12 Aug 2020

Indie devs and trademarks: exclusive research reveals brand protection issues of independent video games

New research from WTR has analysed the brand protection of some of the most successful independent video games, and found significant gaps that could lead to expensive legal issues. Read more

31 Jul 2020

Revealed: Jonathan Morton, Nyall Engfield and Benjamin Becker are top China representatives at USPTO

A year on from the USPTO's domicile rule change, new data shows the leading China-based representatives on trademark applications at the agency. Read more

Trademark law

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3 Jun 2020

Study calls for shake-up of geographical indications to forge path towards universal trademark system

In conversation with WTR, the academic behind the research says a shake-up of indications of geographical origin could be the first step towards the “high ideal” of a universal trademark system. Read more

23 Apr 2020

Inside Treasury Wine Estates’ 10-year battle to register its Penfolds mark in China

WTR speaks to Treasury Wine Estates’ global director of intellectual property to get the inside track on how the company prevailed in a decade-long trademark squatting case. Read more

23 Apr 2020

Procedures and strategies for anti-counterfeiting: China

The Product Quality Law and the Anti-unfair Competition Law also provide important IP provisions for anti-counterfeiting and falsified trademarks. Read more

21 Apr 2020

“Online auctions of trademarks are on the ascendancy in China”: reflections on the QVOD portfolio sale

Last week in China, an auction of 234 trademarks owned by Shenzhen QVOD Technology Co took place on Alibaba’s auction platform, in a two-day bidding war closing at Rmb9.5 million. Read more

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