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Friday, 24 February 2006


The People’s Daily Online reports on the furore surrounding an application for three Community trade marks containing the term NOT MADE IN CHINA. The mark has been branded ‘discriminatory’ against Chinese products and a disgrace to Chinese dignity. OHIM is expected to make a decision on registrability in about a year’s time.

The IPKat says that the mark is certainly not deceptive. Is it contrary to public policy though? Perhaps more interestingly, is a mark which tells consumers about the qualities that goods do not have descriptive? Often the answer must be yes (e.g. CONTAINS NO CARBS) but is a mark truly descriptive where it tells consumers that goods do not have a quality which they would not expect the goods to have in any event. For example, would a registration of DOES NOT CONTAIN ELEPHANTS be descriptive of chocolate?

View the applied for mark here


Tigga said...

Does the mark cause offence or is it merely distasteful?....

Guy said...

There are a number of negative trade marks registered in the UK. One of the better ones is 1468738 "NOT DOG" for meat substitutes in class 30. OHIM have accepted the three "NOT MADE IN CHINA" applications so it is up to someone to oppose when they are published.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget NOT MADE IN FRANCE, which was refused for clothing in the USA on grounds of descriptiveness, I seem to recall. It was reported in the ETMR within recent memory ...

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