(By Luo Yanjie) Abstract:A trademark shall be distinctive and a rational use of the characters in a trademark does not constitute infringement. The 2013 version of the Trademark law clearly stipulates that where an identical or similar trademark has been used in connection with the same goods or similar goods by others before the registrant’s application, the exclusive right holder of said registered trademark shall have no right to prohibit other people from using the aforesaid trademark from continuous use of such trademark within the original scope, but may request its users to add proper marks for distinction.
(By Luo Yanjie) Abstract: To judge whether two goods are similar, generally is ruled upon the basis of the Chinese Goods and Services Classification and then on the courts’ interpretation of different cases and facts. The trademark application shall not be a means to register a mark that is already in use by another party and enjoys substantial influence, and shall also not infringe upon another party’s prior existing rights.
The statement “Goods and service are similar” refers to the goods and services that are associated with each other and thus are likely to produce confusion among the relevant public (our previous post, Why the “NEXT” Trademark could Receive Cross-class Protection in China had introduced similar problems), in which the actual situations conflict with the Chinese Goods and Services Classification of the Chinese Trademark Office (the “CTMO”). In today’s post, we would like to introduce a typical case.
(By Luo Yanjie) Abstract: A subsequently applied trademark must not be identical with or similar to a prior trademark. The trademark submitted for registration must have sufficient characteristics that allow it to be distinguishable. A few days ago, foreign media outlets reported that Audi had filed several trademarks application for model names, including SQ2, SQ4 and Q9. This is a sign that these vehicles will likely be sold in China in the future.
According to our research, further information about those trademarks is not yet available in Mainland China. This is likely either because Audi has not started the application procedures, or because the Trademark Office has not yet input Audi’s application information online. However, this does not affect our analysis on the outlook of those trademarks in mainland China.