(By You Yunting) According to the news, Alibaba Group, an Chinese e-commerce that provides consumer-to-consumer business-to-consumer and business-to-business sales services via web portals, has already obtained the registration of the trademark “双十一” (meaning “double 11”, actually the date of November 11th) (the “disputed trademark”) and authorized its affiliated Tmall.com to the exclusive use of the disputed trademark. Moreover, Alibaba delivered letters to various news media arguing that the JD.com’s use of “双十一” infringed the rights of its trademark. However, JD.com, one of the largest B2C online retailers in China by transaction volume, replied that the date of “November 11th” has already became a shopping day for all retailers and Alibaba’s registration on the “双十一” is accused of having the monopoly. Actually, Sunning Appliance, Gome and Amazon have suffered such impacts as well as JD.com.
(By You Yunting) Tudou.com (NASDAQ:TUDO) are connected with trademarks in different kinds of services relating entertainments under Class 41. However, Tudou.com failed to apply for its website name as a trademark by virtue of previous similar trademark. Tudou.com is focusing on providing services of video-sharing and video on-demand, but we found out its major services cannot be applied for trademark protection. Therefore, how to deal with this trademark application puts forward higher requests for trademark lawyers. In today’s post, we will introduce this case and discuss the comments in the following.
(By Luo Yanjie)Abstract: Pursuant to Chinese Trademark Law, those applications having unhealthy influences shall not be used as trademarks. “Unhealthy influences” refers to a negative, or inactive influence that may detrimental to the interests and social order of the public, including political, economic, cultural, religious and ethnic allusions which are a registered trademark itself or a mark that is applied to goods or services. However, the Chinese Trademark Office should have a consistent attitude regarding the trademark adjudication standard for these unhealthy influences.
（By Luo Yanjie）Abstract: Current laws have no provisions as to whether a trademark coexistence agreement made by and between the trademark holder with a prior trademark and the trademark applicant with a latter trademark could impact the validity of the latter trademark. Under such circumstances, the courts shall consider and decide whether to approve the above-mentioned agreement. Where litigation concerning trademark ownership affirmation takes the form of an administrative suit, the courts shall, within the scope of the Trademark Review and Adjudication Board’s (the “TRAB”) administrative acts, decide whether its administrative acts are valid and rational.
(By You Yunting) The author would first like to apologyze, that as mentioned in the previous post “Why Did Apple Filed the First “iWatch” Trademark In Jamaica?”:
“For the prospect of iWatch application in mainland China… the author would like to stop here, and I will resume the discussion over this issue in tomorrow’s post.”
Yet due to work obligations, the author broke his promise. For the make-up, the author took an early raise this morning to continue his analysis on the issue. First, the author’s conclusion of the issue is: despite the obstacles of iWatch acquisition, it would not prevent Apple from gaining it.
(By You Yunting) The Luzhou Qian Nian Liquor Co., Ltd. (“Company L”) found that its competitor, the Shandong-based Zhu Ge Jia Liquor Co., Ltd. (“Company S”) acquired three trademarks from a company that had its registration for the marks cancelled five years prior to the trademark transfer. Following this, Company L filed a request to have the trademark revoked, because it had not been used for a continuous three-year period. However, the Trademark Office denied the application, and Company L requested a review of the decision, which was also rejected, leading Company L to ultimately file an administrative lawsuit. In the lawsuit, Company L was equally unsuccessful, and the court refused its demands in both the first and second instance. Following a series of rejections, Company L then appealed the case to the Supreme People’s Court (“Supreme Court”) for a rehearing.
(By Luo Yanjie) Early in this year, JDB Inc., the famous herbal tea manufacturer argued with Guangzhou Pharmaceutical Company (the “GPC”) regarding ownership of the Wang Lao Ji trademark, which concluded in JDB being ordered to cease its use of the trademark. Now, JDB has begun its second battle with GPC, this time accusing GPC of infringeing the trademark “Ji Qing Shi Fen (吉庆时分).” Wanglaoji Health Industry Co. Ltd. (Guangzhou Wanglaoji Company) affiliated with GPC, recently made a statement that the State Trademark Office had accepted its application to revoke the registration of “Ji Qing Shi Fen (吉庆时分)”, the main reason being that the mark is considered generic in the sense that it is vocabulary in common use. Due to this, the State Trademark Office further advocated that it is uncertain whether there can be any exclusive right in the use of the registered mark.
Last year, the Supreme People’s Court issued the final decision in the protracted dispute between LACOSTE and CARTELO. The decision clarifies cases involving long brand history and could guide future hearings on similar disputes in courts of all levels. In the decision, LACOSTE lost the lawsuit, and no infringement was found on the part of CARTELO. In the judgment, the Court took the first steps towards establishing a system of “trademark coexistence,” which means the coexistence of similar trademarks in the same class, for use in China’s trademark cases. Today’s post will provide an analysis of the application of this system in China.
The brief introduction on the registration process of trademark in China
Bridge IP Law Commentary is frequently asked to introduce the process of the trademark application in China and the time it may take. Actually, the trademark registration is a harsh job here 5 years ago, for the administrative examination and approval could take as long as 3 years due to the imbalance between the rocketing applicaton amount and the low efficiencty of the trademark office in China. Luckily, it has been greatly improved, and 10 months is enough for going through the process. Today, Bridge IP Law Commentary will introduce you the standard process of the China trademark registration: