Annual Technical Report 2004 on Industrial Design Information Activities submitted by Norway (SCIT/ATR/ID/2004/NO)
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The expression "industrial designs" covers industrial designs and models. Offices which issue design patents should report their design patent information activities in this series of Annual Technical Reports.
I. Evolution of registration activities
National design applications are normally filed in standardized paper form. Application forms in pdf-format (key in of data, print out and storage of forms is possible) are, available from the web site of the Norwegian Patent Office (“NPO”) at: www.patentstyret.no . If an application is filed using fax, the original document must be submitted by regular mail immediately. The NPO permits the filing of applications and other communications using e-mail, but this is not recommended due to possible security and data format problems.
Use of a standard form (paper or electronic) is not an absolute requirement for being accorded a filing date, or in order to meet a time limit. This applies to any type of application. Neither is a standard form required when making any other kind of communication.
Some statistical data:
Numbers of national applications filed in 2003: 714
Numbers of national applications filed in 2004: 655
The trend the last few years shows an even and modest decrease in design application.
Total number of design cases having ended with a final decision in 2004: 915 applications. Total number of design cases having ended with a final decision in 2003: 447 applications.
The number of design applications granted in 2004: 760
The number of design applications granted in 2003: 334
II. Matters concerning the generation, reproduction, and distribution of industrial design documents and of secondary sources of industrial design information, i.e., official gazettes
The design application journal and design register are manual for design applications filed before March 31st 2003. Design applications filed after that date are handled and registered electronically.
All bibliographical data for designs have been stored in our new database Ptolemy. The information contained therein is the basis for The Norwegian Industrial Design Gazette (“Norsk Designtidende”). The Gazette is published twice a month.
The Gazette is available free of charge on the NPO web site on the day of publication. The Gazette contains bibliographic data and images of the registered designs. It also contains announcements with regards to the extension of the protection period of a design, as well as other proceedings under the Designs Act.
The bibliographic data of the Gazette is entered in a Microsoft Word file. The file is then imported into Adobe Page Maker, where it is merged with a scanned reproduction of the design. The pdf-file is published on the Internet. From January 1, 2002, the Design Gazette is available in electronic format only from the NPO’s web site www.patentstyret.no. We no longer offer a subscription service, and we do not send paper copies of the Gazette to patent offices, libraries etc.
III. Matters concerning classifying, reclassifying and indexing of industrial design information according to the classification systems applied
Norway is a member of the Locarno Classification Agreement, and the search files are
classified in accordance with the agreement. There is no Norwegian translation of the Locarno
Classification list of goods. A list of classes and subclasses with explanatory notes has been translated into Norwegian and published.
IV. Search file establishment and upkeep
The NPO provides an electronic search file for applications and registered designs filed after March 31st 2003. This database contains all the bibliographical data of a design, such as applicant or holder, product specification, priority and images of the design etc. Queries about applications and registrations filed before March 31st 2003 must be made using a manual search file. Both search files are updated on a daily basis.
V. Activities in the field of computerized search systems for industrial designs
The above-mentioned electronic design register, which also includes the official document/correspondence journal, is kept on a server in the NPOs local network, and allows queries on words and Locarno classes. Pictures of the designs are scanned, and kept in the electronic design register as images in tif or jpeg-format. They are viewable on screen, but at present the query must also be performed manually with regards to design applications filed before March 31st 2003.
In the future, information on design rights will be made electronically available to our customers. For the time being however, this is only an in-house system.
VI. Administration of industrial design services available to the public (relating to facilities, e.g., for lodging applications, registering designs, assisting clients with search procedures, obtaining official publications and registry extracts)
The Norwegian Patent Office is situated in Oslo. The Office is open to the public, and is much used by agents/attorneys for information purposes. The official design register is open to the public Monday - Friday between 0900 and 1500. The Info Centre and Library can answer questions and give general information to the public concerning industrial property rights. The search files and applications are generally available, except those applications for which publication has been deferred. Customers may visit the Office to examine the search files, or they may send an inquiry to the Office. In addition, the Documentation Service offers register transcripts from the official registers or copies of defined registrations for a small copy fee.
More specific information about these services is available at: www.patentstyret.no
VII. Matters concerning mutual exchange of industrial design documentation and information
The Norwegian Patent Office still receives official design gazettes from some national offices. No paper copies of the Norwegian Design Gazette are distributed.
Copies from the other Nordic countries are circulated weekly among the executive officers in the Office. The NPO does not forward any machine-readable information. However, the NPO does exchange its final decisions on design applications with the other Nordic countries.
VIII. Matters concerning education and training including technical assistance to developing countries
The NPO promotes protection of intellectual property etc by participating at fairs and exhibitions. The NPO carried out 41 courses and seminars, covering all aspects of intellectual property rights. The NPO also cooperate with several universities and colleges in Norway and have a dialogue with the new TTO’s (Technology Transfer Offices) in Norway.
IX. Other relevant matters
The Norwegian Patent Office introduced electronic application processing for design in 2003 and the system has been further improved during 2004.
By using the electronic application processing and document flow system, the NPO aims at supporting the following functions:
· New receipt of applications function for industrial rights and ordinary correspondence, including the recording, scanning and OCR treatment of received material. A parallel project paves the road for electronic submission of material as well.
· Electronic document archive with journal and archive management.
· Electronic application processing system, including electronic workflow and the facility for electronic checking of applications for previously registered rights.
· An Internet solution permitting storage of all relevant information in the document archive and access to all published applications for the general public.
The Internet solution is not yet in use.