For the half-year to 31 December 2014, the IPKat's regular team is supplemented by contributions from guest bloggers Rebecca Gulbul, Lucas Michels and Marie-Andrée Weiss.

Regular round-ups of the previous week's blogposts are kindly compiled by Alberto Bellan.

Tuesday, 25 July 2006

IT'S ALL WELSH TO ME ...


It's all Welsh to me ...

The IPKat's post here on UK trade mark registration regarding foreign words, including words that sounded exotic to English ears but were descriptive or generic in Welsh, has sparked some response.

Eugene Pienaar (Managing Director, Revomark) wrote:

"One of my clients wanted to register Gwesty Cymru (Hotel Wales) – anyway I was worried about the inherent registrability issues and therefore ordered an official Patent Office search prior to filing. The result of the search was that the mark is regarded as being desciptive (notwithstanding the fact that the majority of English speakers would not understand it) and therefore unregistrable".
Anonymous I added:
"In spite of Y Swyddfa Batentau [Welsh for the Patent Office], which handles UK trade mark applications, being located in the Pricipality, they allowed 2266669 to be registered, this being the word MAWR, which is a widely-used Welsh word for great or big; the applicant was a Welsh firm. They have also registered Aroy-D for foodstuffs. Anyone who knows Thai is aware that this means highly delicious. [Like the Welsh, Thais put the adjective after the noun]".
Anonymous II then chipped in:
"Hold on a minute. MAWR is a device mark rather than word only and it's registered for computer software. True,Aroy-D is registered, but that's because we conscientiously follow the guidance given by the ECJ/CFI - see eg the KIAP MOU case. Diolwch Fawr!".
Then came what appeared to be a rejoinder from Anonymous I:
"It is good to hear that the guidance of ECJ/CFI is conscientiously followed. However in November 1990, when Aroy-D was registered, the guidance did not exist. Perhaps aid was received from dewines [Welsh witches]".
Delicately changing the subject, Anonymous III confessed:
"Two people in this office, myself included, saw Caffe Fresco and thought "coffee outside" not fresh coffee.. obviously we're not average!".
The IPKat is gratified to have kick-started this little string. It shows how passionately people feel about the Welsh trade mark issue. It also shows, as the IPKat's much-respected friend Guy sagely notes: "I think ... you will be happy to have evidence that there is at least one reader in The Patent Office!".

More on dewines here
Welsh Language Society here
Welsh jokes here

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

Just to reassure everyone that there is definitely more than one enthusiast here in the Patent Office.

Blogger 111 proves the point that the 'supervising courts' in Europe are quite right to treat average consumers as hopelessly ignorant of any other languages, other than their own.

Blogger 111 also proves what I have long suspected. That we spoil you folks by racking our brains for examples to illustrate practice. We should state 'practice' in terms of a series of bland statements about 'legal principle':)

Anonymous said...

Re: Caffe Fresco, contrary to the English "outdoors" usage, in Italy "al fresco" is conventionally understood to mean "in prison"... Prison coffee anyone?

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