The James Nurton interview. A number of organisational changes will take place at OHIM later this year, following an investigation of the best way to support the existing efforts being made to improve performance and quality.
In addition, the Department of Industrial Property Policy, under its current director Vincent O'Reilly, will take on additional responsibilities for managing all legal database tools to help deliver greater quality and consistency as well as for all processes and protocols that have an impact on the quality of examiners' work.
What is the rationale for these changes? VOR: At present, files are not being treated equally. It is possible for the same type of file to get completely different treatment in terms of time, responsiveness to correspondence, quality of decisions and so on.
We set up three working groups to analyse the situation and propose recommendations on:. Equal treatment of files is very important. The average conceals a lot of variations.
We should not have big differences between files of the same sort. The conclusions of the working groups suggests that those standards must be translated into measurable objectives at departmental, service and examiner level as well as serving as the basis to establish parameters on the allocation and management of files.
Finally, it is recommended that the head of service and legal adviser are made more accountable for the quality produced by their service and that mechanisms for spreading good practice through services should be implemented. Do you think we have been targeting the right things?
VOR : We have been defining and publishing our quality measures. We have also been measuring it successfully. Some people have said that the outside world is not interested in some of the things we measure, but there is no evidence of that. To take an example, I would say that if a client receives a file in which their name is spelt wrongly, or there are grammatical errors, this will also have an impact on the confidence the client has that we have made the correct decision.
The problem is not that the quality indicators have been measuring the wrong things, but that in some areas there has been no significant improvement. Will there, nevertheless, be some changes to the Service Charter?
Up until now we have been measuring our performance with respect to a basket of all files. This reflects the fact that some files, which meet oppositions or have other problems, are always going to take longer for various reasons. This approach, as Vincent says, has hidden some of the large variations in the way in which straightforward files, which don't have oppositions or are not appealed, are treated. If no user interaction is required we can't completely control the time our customers take to respond then the targets will typically be very high.
This approach will help us to give equal treatment for the same type of files. What will be the most noticeable difference for trade mark users? JRRM: There will be a single trade mark department with fewer, larger services.The James Nurton interview.
More news. Around European companies including a large number of SMEs have taken part in a European consultation on trade marks. This kind of consultation is designed to allow the European Commission to obtain direct feedback from businesses on Commission legislative proposals or initiatives likely to have an impact on businesses.
Inthe European Community harmonised national trade mark laws, and in it created the Community trade mark. This enables businesses to adapt their activities to the scale of the Community.
The purpose is to provide an in-depth assessment of the functioning of the EU trade mark system with a view to identify potential needs for improvement and future developments. The evaluation includes issues such as the added value of a trade marks for companies, the awareness of the potential users, the costs of a trade mark, the relationship between the national and the Community trade mark systems, the efficiency of the systems and the protection of trade marks.
Around one-quarter of the organisations said they did not currently sell outside their own countries. A significant proportion of respondents said they had not obtained a registered trade mark because it was either "too expensive", "too complicated" or they were "not convinced" of the added value. How long have you been working in trade marks?
I started 17 years ago in May. I am an attorney working in trade marks, designs, unfair competition, copyright and patents. I like the fact that IP is intellectually challenging but also involves profound work. It is very fast and challenging and you deal with impressive and charismatic people — both clients and colleagues. It is also interesting to work with well-known marks. It was at this point that I was drawn to IP work. What kind of work do you do? Our law firm specialises in IP.
We have 23 attorneys, all of whom handle trade mark issues, with almost 90 people in the firm in total.Demo: Filing a Case - eFiling Premiere Presentation (5 of 8)
We have a broad mixture of international clients and German clients who we do international work for. So we have contacts with a lot of firms overseas. Personally, I handle both prosecution and litigation work in trade marks, with probably about a split. Altogether, we file between 19 and 25 CTMs per month, so up to about a year.
In the year to Marchaccording to published figures, we made filings making us the top German firm filing CTMs. Filings from German clients have definitely increased, though of course it is hard to see what the economic changes will bring. The CTM is a lot more popular in Germany than it was back in the late s, though it has always been popular with Japanese and US clients. Why do you think interest from German companies has increased? The CTM system is not as difficult as perhaps some people thought in the beginning.
They feared there would be a lot of oppositions, but we have found that while you may get a lot of those, normally things get sorted out in the end. And you get protection in 27 countries. Do you think CTMs have taken over from national marks?
If the client acts globally, I normally recommend having parallel applications — one for a CTM and one for a national mark on which to base the international registration. It provides a safe harbour. But of course sometimes clients only want a CTM.
Are you happy with the speed and quality of examination at OHIM?All comments must be moderated by a member of the IPKat team before they appear on the blog. Comments will not be allowed if the contravene the IPKat policy that readers' comments should not be obscene or defamatory; they should not consist of ad hominem attacks on members of the blog team or other comment-posters and they should make a constructive contribution to the discussion of the post on which they purport to comment.
It is also the IPKat policy that comments should not be made completely anonymously, and users should use a consistent name or pseudonym which should not itself be defamatory or obscene, or that of another real personeither in the "identity" field, or at the beginning of the comment.
Current practice is to, however, allow a limited number of comments that contravene this policy, provided that the comment has a high degree of relevance and the comment chain does not become too difficult to follow. The IPKat. Passionate about IP! Since June the IPKat has covered copyright, patent, trade mark, designs, info-tech, privacy and confidentiality issues from a mainly UK and European perspective.
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The World Trade Organization has just issued its panel report on the US-China dispute over intellectual property rights. The report goes on for pages and that Kats haven't had a chance to read it yet, but the bottom line is as follows: 8.
Presumably the cost in terms of the deployment of the Panel's resources outweighs the value to the trading world of the outcome of the claims concerned] with respect to: a the claim under Article 5 2 of the Berne Conventionas incorporated by Article 9. China did not succeed in rebutting that presumption.
Honours are equal, faces are saved, everyone is happy Concluding remark 8. The Panel's mandate was limited to a review of whether those alleged deficiencies, based upon an objective assessment of the facts presented by the parties, are inconsistent with those specific provisions of the TRIPs Agreement.
The IPKat would like to thank his friend and colleague Jo Gibson for drawing his attention to something he should have been vigilant to spot. Reviewed by Jeremy on Monday, January 26, Rating: 5. No comments:. Subscribe to: Post Comments Atom. How many page-views has the IPKat received?The system supports the OHIM officers over officers use the system daily in examining the roughly 70, applications received each year electronically or via postal mail.
It also assists to manage the already registered Roughly 50, trademark applications will be filed every year electronically through the system. It provides offline and online tools for economic operators creating and managing their INTRASTAT declarations, concerning their intra-community commercial transactions. Furthermore, it supports the online processing of the submitted declarations and their validation according to pre-defined rules.
The objective of the project is the design and development of IT applications, so that all the functions of the Ministry and the civil, penal, and real estate Courts of Tunisia are automated. PRADO is a publicly available multilingual site 22 EU languagesoffering easy access to official information on security features of authentic identity and travel documents, as well as visas and stamps. The site contains images and multilingual summary information on some of the most commonly used identity documents of the 27 EU Member States and some third countries.
Users may find a full description of the most important and the easily-checkable security features of these documents, like watermarks, security threads and more. The system guarantees the highest possible level of quality and reliability as it is regularly updated with valuable information from FADO False and Authentic Documents Online ; a central system for the exchange of information on travel identity documents between the EU Member States, Iceland and Norway. PRADO is addressed to the general public as well as governmental and non-governmental organizations, including employers, postal services, banks and credit institutions, security companies, vehicle hire agencies, notaries, etc.
The Public Procurement Directorate PPD of the Treasury of the Republic of Cyprus is the organiser of the 1st information Day in the context of the implementation of the general platform for conducting public procurement competitions in Cyprus, using electronic means. Participants will include representatives of most of the Contracting Authorities of the Republic of Cyprus approx.
Click on the different category headings to find out more. You can also change some of your preferences. Note that blocking some types of cookies may impact your experience on our websites and the services we are able to offer.
These cookies are strictly necessary to provide you with services available through our website and to use some of its features. Because these cookies are strictly necessary to deliver the website, you cannot refuse them without impacting how our site functions. You can block or delete them by changing your browser settings and force blocking all cookies on this website.
We also use different external services like Google Webfonts, Google Maps and external Video providers. Since these providers may collect personal data like your IP address we allow you to block them here.The James Nurton interview. More news. As indicated in the December edition of Alicante News, demand for the Community trade marks was adversely affected by the chaos on the international financial markets in the latter part of the year.
While, the full figures for last year are still being analysed, two interesting trends are already clear. Trade mark applications were slightly down, but the number of CTMs registered rose substantially, and the proportion of customers opting to do business using our online tools went up also. Since the CTM was introduced in registrations have risen consistently every year and was no exception. A total of 81 Community trade marks were registered including the symbolic th CTM which went to the small Italian company, Handy Dandy Design.
The picture for registered Community design RCD registrations was also positive with more than 78 designs published and registered last year — around 4 more than in Towards the end of last year OHIM introduced improvements in the electronic communication tool, E-Communication, that is embedded in the MyPage personalised web space. The additional functions are currently being phased in and all MyPage users are strongly encouraged to take advantage of this service. Over the coming months the Office will be introducing further developments in e-Business tools as the office continues to modernise and improve.
The first major development will be the introduction of the new CTM E-Filing tool, which is detailed in a separate article in the e-Business section, and a new and much improved version of RCD E-Filing is also on the way. In all, despite some setbacks on the demand side due to world events, will be remembered as a year in which OHIM continued to produce improvements in productivity and laid the groundwork for some significant developments in e-Business. This month, James Nurton speaks to the trade mark counsel for Tommy Hilfiger in Amsterdam about fashion brands, famous marks in Europe and the impact of the credit crunch on trade mark protection.
When did you become interested in trade marks? I started as an attorney in private practice specialising in insurance law, and in I moved to the IP department. My job title is Trademark Counsel and I manage the global trade mark portfolio of both Tommy Hilfiger and Karl Lagerfeld, including the respective domain name portfolios. We outsource all the administrative work to a trade mark agency, Novagraaf, so I mainly deal with the strategy. We have about 2, Tommy Hilfiger marks and about 1, Karl Lagerfeld marks.
What are your important markets? We should be covered worldwide now. For the apparel collections, our main brands are well established and include the word marks and the flag.
But we also frequently launch fragrances — such as Hilfiger for men and Dreaming for women — which require new trade mark applications. Tommy Hilfiger himself still lives in the US and is closely involved in the representation and direction of the brand. What are the advantages and disadvantages of protecting fashion trade marks? In our case, Hilfiger is a good, distinctive name but Tommy is less distinctive. However, the combination Tommy Hilfiger is very strong, there is no brand similar to that.
One of the disadvantages of the fashion industry is that fashion changes all the time and designers always look for new ways to present the brand and from a trade mark perspective this can pose difficulties. Is it difficult to protect the word Tommy? It depends on the region.
Especially in Asia we face problems. In Japan we came across Tomy toys, which raised some interesting issues.The system, developed as a result of user feedback, has been designed to be both quicker and simpler to use. It incorporates important features requested by users such as the ability to save and restore draft CTM applications. There is also a faster submission process with immediate confirmation including the CTM application number and the generation of a receipt that you can print or save.
Automatic error checking helps ensure that users put in the correct data, and there are improved facilities to help with the introduction of goods and services. More information will be available shortly on a special CTM e-filing web page, and video "How-to" guides introducing the system step by step, are available for immediate viewing.
Keep watching the OHIM website news service for further updates over the next few days. All comments must be moderated by a member of the IPKat team before they appear on the blog. Comments will not be allowed if the contravene the IPKat policy that readers' comments should not be obscene or defamatory; they should not consist of ad hominem attacks on members of the blog team or other comment-posters and they should make a constructive contribution to the discussion of the post on which they purport to comment.
It is also the IPKat policy that comments should not be made completely anonymously, and users should use a consistent name or pseudonym which should not itself be defamatory or obscene, or that of another real personeither in the "identity" field, or at the beginning of the comment. Current practice is to, however, allow a limited number of comments that contravene this policy, provided that the comment has a high degree of relevance and the comment chain does not become too difficult to follow.
The IPKat. Passionate about IP! Since June the IPKat has covered copyright, patent, trade mark, designs, info-tech, privacy and confidentiality issues from a mainly UK and European perspective.
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The information will also be published on the OHIM's website later today. This Kat certainly hopes for more stability when submitting the application, so she does not have to phone the OHIM to check whether the application was submitted or not. Subscribe to: Post Comments Atom. How many page-views has the IPKat received?
Not just any old IPKat Get the Kat in your Inbox! Over 16, readers already subscribe to the IPKat by email.The IPKat. Passionate about IP! Since June the IPKat has covered copyright, patent, trade mark, designs, info-tech, privacy and confidentiality issues from a mainly UK and European perspective. Read, post comments and participate! Wilkof, and Merpel. E-mail the Kats here!
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