The new grounds for refusing trademarks as merely informational can in practice result in denial of the Supplemental Register for merely descriptive trademarks because by definition such descriptive terms provide information about the goods
Trademark selection criteria upgrade is now justified in terms of time and clarity of requirements for application approval.
That will automatically drive a simpler process downstream.
If this is a legitimate basis for refusal, it should not apply in cases where the proper refusal is merely descriptive or generic, which should be stated expressly in the guide. Beyond that, the guide does not provide any guidance on what the distinction is between "incapable" versus "merely descriptive," "generic," "ornamental" or "use as a mark." As noted by others, saying that the matter "merely  imparts information" ...more »
By Leonora Hoicka (IBM Associate General Counsel, IP Law), Lisa Ulrich (IBM Senior Attorney, IP Law), and Jenny Greisman ( IBM Attorney, IP Law) IBM thanks the United States Patent and Trademark Office (Office) for the opportunity to comment on the Draft Examination Guide on Incapable Informational Matter (1/19/2017). The following comments discuss IBM’s concerns with respect to having informational matter as a separate ...more »
TMEP 1109.17 Prohibits the withdrawal of a statement of use (in effect, you can’t convert back to a 1(b) application after converting to 1(a)). So far as I can tell, there is no statutory basis for this, and it is inconsistent with the office’s practice of permitting an application originally filed on a 1(a) basis to be converted to a 1(b) application if the specimen submitted with the 1(a) application is rejected by ...more »
In a post today, the system added a couple of words to the end of my post: the words "just now" were added to the end of a comment on indexing of the TMEP. I experienced a similar occurrence with a post in the past, but thought it was a typo/mistake on my part. But today I double-checked to make sure there were no words at the end of the post before hitting "submit," and there were not; but after pressing submit, the ...more »
Please note that this discussion board provides a forum for public suggestions and discussion relating to the TMEP. Although the USPTO moderates this discussion board, the USPTO generally will not respond to the comments. However, the comments will be reviewed and considered by TMEP editorial staff in connection with periodic updates of the TMEP.
it woudl be helpful to have a section in the manual instructing on how to submit a request under the trademark office's Consistency Initative Program. Currently, the TMEP does not even mention the program.
This is a test idea. Please treat it as a sandbox for commenting and voting.
It would be nice if references to the statutes, regulations and cases that are cited in the TMEP were all active hyperlinks to that underlying material.
I think that indexing in the TMEP could be improved and more cross references added. For instance, if you want to look up "Abandonment" in the index, all you get is "Abandonment of application" and numerous related subtopics. You don't get any references to "Abandonment of mark" or "Abandonment, presumption of."
This issue is in the Rules so cannot be addressed just in the TMEP, but here goes. 37 C.F.R. §2.161. requires the following of a declaration of excusable non-use: (2) If the registered mark is not in use in commerce on or in connection with all the goods or services in the registration, set forth the date when use of the mark in commerce stopped and the approximate date when use is expected to resume; and . . ." For ...more »