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Jūrate Kaminskiene, Head of Examination Subdivision Examination of languages other than official national languages - regional languages or languages understood.

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Presentation on theme: "Jūrate Kaminskiene, Head of Examination Subdivision Examination of languages other than official national languages - regional languages or languages understood."— Presentation transcript:

1 Jūrate Kaminskiene, Head of Examination Subdivision Examination of languages other than official national languages - regional languages or languages understood by a large population in the country (Situation in Lithuania) 8 th LM on Trade Marks

2 Population by Ethnicity – Lithuania EthnicityPopulation ( thousands ) % Lithuanians Poles Russians Belarusians Ukrainians Other Total Statistical Yearbook of Lithuania 2011 (Department of Statistics under the Government of the Republic of Lithuania)

3 Europeans and Their Languages, Special Eurobarometer, November – December 2005 (European Commission) Official languageOther most widely known languages LithuanianRussian 80 % English 32 % Polish 15 % Knowledge of Languages

4 Examination of Marks (1) Translation facilities available on the Internet, which give all possible meanings of foreign words in Latin or Cyrillic characters nowadays are widely used for trade mark examination. Translations are performed for assessment: Distinctiveness of marks Descriptive marks Misleading marks Offensive marks Geographical origin Similarity of marks

5 Refused word marksNice Classification Language Acta Juris42Latin Intia30Finnish BYŽU14, 35Czech ARTIST Salon de Coiffure44French PASTELLA29Italian IL VERO SAPORE ITALIANO43Italian Moda Italiana25Italian NATURALMENTE3Italian Examination of Marks (2)

6 Examination of Marks (3) Example of registered mark: Class 29: milk and milk products There were some doubts relating to registrability of the mark. The mark is very similar to Lithuanian word Grietin ė ( sour cream in Lithuanian ). Finally, it has been found that mark consists of Latvian female name diminutive form. The mark has been registered.

7 Appeal of 26 May 2009, Descriptiveness DOLCE GUSTO – classes 30,32. Findings: It is not forbidden to register the descriptive words from other state language, unless the relevant parties are capable of identifying the meaning of the term ( Decision C-421/04 of the Court of Justice ). Independent survey submitted by the applicant: Only 0.6 % of respondents indicated the meaning “sweet taste”, 96.9 % of respondents do not understand the meaning of the mark, 2.5 % of respondents indicated the other possible meanings. Conclusion: The mark consists of the term of foreign language. The knowledge of Italian language is very small in Lithuania, so the meaning of the mark is not clear. The majority of Lithuanian consumers would understand the mark as a combination of foreign words.

8 Appeal of 30 June 2009, Morality MENAGE A TROIS – class 33 wine. Findings: Independent survey submitted by the applicant: 98.6 % of respondents do not understand the meaning of the term, 1.4 % of respondents understand the meaning, however only in 2 cases they indicated the same meaning as an expert. Conclusion: The meaning of the term MENAGE A TROIS is not clear for Lithuanian consumers. They would understand the mark as a combination of the foreign words.

9 Opposition of 10 September 2007, Similarity TAZZA D’ORO – class 30. PIAZZA D’ORO – class 30. Findings: Visual and phonetic similarity of marks. Italian language is not well known in Lithuania, therefore the meaning of words would not be known for the average consumer. The differences in semantics would not balance the criteria of visual and phonetic similarity. Conclusion: The marks are misleadingly similar.

10 Opposition of 10 September 2007, Similarity MAIGUMS – class 30. MAGNUM – class 30. Findings: The marks are not similar visually and phonetically. Only the first two letters are similar, however both ssyllables are different: MAI-GUMS, MAG-NUM. The marks have different meanings. MAGNUM - big ( Latin ), MAIGUMS - delicacy ( Latvian ). The differences in semantics are not decisive because Latvian language is not well known in Lithuania. There is only a possibility that the meaning of MAGNUM in Latin would be understandable for some Lithuanian consumers. Conclusion: The marks are not misleadingly similar.

11 Summary Word marks consisting of descriptive words from other state language, in principal, can be registered. Translations relating to potentially misleading, offensive marks and geographical indications should be viewed more carefully. Interpretation of the words from other state language gives quite important effect in evaluation of semantic similarity of marks in certain cases.

12 THANK YOU ! Jūrate Kaminskiene, Head of Examination Subdivision


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