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Annual Technical Report 2006 on Industrial Design Information Activities submitted by Japan (SCIT/ATR/ID/2006/JP)

 

Where URLs are requested below, it is preferred that either URLs which are likely to remain stable over time (three years or more) are provided, or home (main) page URLs are provided with a short explanation of how to access the corresponding information.

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

Changes experienced in terms of application filings and grants (registrations) with respect to the previous year

The number of applications in 2006 was 36,724 (down 6.4% from the previous year). The number of registrations was 29,689 (down 9.0% from the previous year).

Trends or areas experiencing rapid changes with respect to the previous year

The total number of applications is down about 6.4% from the previous year. Among them, the number of applications in Group H of the Japanese Design Classification (Electric and Electronic Machinery and Instruments, Communication Machinery and Instruments) has decreased. The number of applications for the partial design had been generally in the increasing tend since the commencement of reception of the application in 1999, and in 2006, it accounted for about 24% of the total number of applications, while the number of applications of related design had shown decreasing trend since 2005, and it reached 17% of the total number of applications in 2006.

URLs of web pages of the Office’s website that provide statistics related to industrial designs

http://www.jpo.go.jp/shiryou_e/toushin_e/kenkyukai_e/pdf/annual_report2006/part5.pdf

II. Matters concerning the generation, reproduction, and distribution of industrial design documents and of secondary sources of industrial design information, i.e., official gazettes

Publishing, including printing, copying techniques and electronic printing

The JPO published the following design documents in 2006:
Publication of Registered Design        31,037 issues
Decision on Appeal/Trial Gazette           652 issues

Mass storage media and microforms used

The JPO has started to receive online design applications (electronic applications) since January 2000. The JPO electronically edits the collected data acquired from electronic applications or electronic conversion of paper-based applications and creates Design Gazettes.
a) Design Gazette
Starting from January 2000, the JPO has issued the Publication of Registered Design in the form of a CD-ROM.
A single volume of Design Gazette contains about 700 issues and it was published 50 times in 2006.
Design Gazette enables search using 13 keys as search keys, including registration number, goods related to the design, Japanese Design Classification and D-term. The Design Gazette contains mixed-mode type data, composed of text data and image data, thus text search using text data is available.
The JPO has been providing, free of charge, viewer software to use the Design Gazette. The software is also operable on Windows English version so that it can be used in overseas Patent Offices.

Databases and office automation

Refer to the third section of paragraph.

URLs of web pages of the Office’s website that provide access to online industrial design gazettes and other sources of industrial design information, including download of bulk industrial design data

The following are the URLs of web pages providing design information. However, information is not provided in bulk format.
http://www.ipdl.inpit.go.jp/Isyou/isyou.htm (web page providing design information in IPDL's website)
http://www.publication.jpo.go.jp/utility/do/usr/topmenu?lang=j (JPO's website for issuing Design Gazettes through the Internet)

III. Matters concerning classifying, reclassifying and indexing of industrial design information according to the classification systems applied

Classification and reclassification activities; Classification system used, e.g., International Classification for Industrial Designs (Locarno Classification), other classification (please indicate whether industrial designs are classified by your Office and, if so, which classification is used)

In January 2005, the JPO started using the revised Japanese Design Classification in order to cope with the new conception of articles and the like observed in the category of information and communication devices. The revised Japanese Design Classification mainly uses the concept of the usage in the same way as the conventional Japanese Design Classification, with composition of 3-stage classification; group, main class, and minor class, comprising of about 3,200 classification limbs in total.
In addition, JPO provides about 1,800 limbs of D-term, which are mechanical search keys for further subdividing the Japanese Design Classification mainly based on forms of articles.
In 2006, the JPO assigned 36,724 filed applications and about 220,000 cases of publicly known documentary materials such as magazines, catalogues, Internet, etc. to be used as reference materials for design examinations to a Japanese design classification.

Bibliographic data and processing

As bibliographic data for searches, application number, filing date, registration number, registration date, article, Japanese design classification, D-term (classification symbols for retrieving purposes made by further subdividing Japanese Design Classification) and others are used in reference documents related to applications. Disclosure date, acceptance date, publishing date, article, design class, D-term and others are used in reference documents related to disclosure.
These data are stored on hard disk document by document for use as search references.

IV. Search file establishment and upkeep

File building

The JPO has stored in search files the following: reference documents related to applications; designs presented in magazines published in Japan and abroad, in catalogs, on home pages on the internet and elsewhere; image data (including color image data) gained by electronic processing foreign design gazettes; and bibliographic data (including Japanese design classification and D-term). These are used as base data for the JPO’s design examination.
On January 1, 2000, the JPO started receiving design registration applications on-line. Accordingly, information on designs whose registration was applied for is automatically put into search files. The image data and bibliographic data in approximately 2,230,000 reference documents related to applications and approximately 3,720,000 reference documents related to publicly-known designs had been stored in search files by the year 2006.

Updating

The image and bibliographic data on 36,724 applications and about 220,000 publicly known design reference document were added.

Storage, including mass storage media

Hard disk

Documentation from other offices maintained and/or considered part of the available search file

Foreign Design gazettes.

V. Activities in the field of computerized search systems for industrial designs

In-house systems (online/offline)

a) Design Search System
This is a client server-type online system for retrieving application documentary materials and publicly known documentary materials (including foreign design gazettes) by using the Japanese Design Classification and D-terms (search keys that subdivide the Japanese Design Classification), names of article pertaining to a design, applicant identifying numbers, etc. as search keys. The image data of the document retrieved is sent from the image file server and displayed (color image data is displayed in color) on the screen of a terminal, for enabling high-speed screening. In order to support efficient document search, provided is a function to display the design classification, applicant identifying number, etc. by which there is higher possibility to find relevant documents as search information, based on the past examination results.
In March 2007, search functions will be strengthened and reference functions will be improved along with the renewal of the search server. In addition, the screen design was made more convenient through a thorough review of the user interface.

b) Appeal and trial decision search system (J-term search system)
Gazettes and other documents on appeal and trial decisions are converted into electronic form and search keys, called J-term, are assigned to them; thereby enabling search and browsing by using J-term. A full-text search is available for appeal and trial decisions issued after January 2000.

Administrative management systems (e.g., register, legal status, statistics, administrative support, etc.)

In January 2000, the design paperless system was started and the administrative and examination procedures were completely moved to the system based on electronic data. Therefore, a total system, covering from design application filing, formality check and substantive examination, dispatching, registration, publishing the gazette, requesting inspection of files, to requesting certification, was completed. The effect of this system is far reaching, such as more efficient drafting based on the close link between the administrative system and the design search system, more efficient examination by implementation of electronic approval, faster design gazette publication and separate management of each application.
Based on the realization of the above system, the JPO started to receive electronic applications of designs. The high percentage of on-line applications has been kept since the introduction of the on-line application system, and the ratio of on-line applications of designs is currently as high as 91% (on average in 2006). As the JPO's system is a comprehensive system, the data processing and search system of designs are merely a part of all the JPO's system. Therefore the whole system should be referred to the "Annual Technical Report on Patent Information Activities".

Equipment used (hardware, including the types of terminal and network used, and software), data carriers used

Please refer to the "Annual Technical Report on Patent Information Activities".

VI. Administration of industrial design information products and 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)

Planning, administration, automation, security

The Intellectual Property Related Materials Reading Room is provided on the first basement of the JPO office building, and is operated in the following manner. And it is a branch library of the National Diet Library.
(1) The user
- JPO workers and those who obtained permission from the Director of the Patent Information Division (inclusive of public users).
- Personnel of the National Diet Library and personnel of the branch libraries of each ministries and government offices.
(2) Open
- 9:30 to 18:00

Collection management, preservation

Books are added with the storage number and classification and put on shelves, while bibliographic information is inputted in the library system to construct a database for a collection of books.

Information services available to the public (including computerized services and search files contained in libraries remote from your Office and industrial design information posted by your Office on the World Wide Web).

a) Providing industrial property rights information via the Internet
The JPO has been providing the Industrial Property Digital Library service since March 1999. This service is accessible through the Internet and covers 61 million items of industrial property information by using document number and/or classification as search keys. This service was transferred in October 2004 to the National Center for Industrial Property Information and Training (INPIT), and has been operated thereby.
Main services relating to design information that the JPO provides are as follows:

1) Design Gazette database search
Design Gazette published in and after 1889 can be searched by using document number.
The English service has also been provided since March 2004.

2) Use of assigned number when searching for design documents
The various kinds of Design Gazettes published since 1964 can be searched by using an assigned number and so forth.

3) Japanese Design Classification and D-term
Searching for flash report on registration of the establishment of design rights and Design Gazette documents by using Japanese Design Classification and D-term is available. Services of narrowing down by use of the registration number have been provided since March 2004. The search based on the Japanese Design Classification (put into force on January 1, 2005) has been available since January 2005. Similar or related design searches have been available since March 2006. Searches based on the Japanese Design Classification (put into force on April 1, 2007) will be available from October 2007.
4) Searching of Design Gazettes by text search
The Design Gazette and the gazette of applications of design whose registration was disagreed on consultation, after 2000, can be referred to by free-word search and document number. Searches based on the Japanese Design Classification (put into force on January 1, 2005) have been available since January 2005. Searches based on the Japanese Design Classification (put into force on April 1, 2007) will be available from October 2007.

5) Classification lists
The Japanese Design Classification, the Locarno-Japan Design Classification Cross-Reference Table, and D-term list can be referenced to. Starting from January 2005, the new Japanese Design Classification and D-term list has been provided. The Locarno and New Japan Design Classification Cross-Reference Table and the Korean and New Japan Design Classification Cross-Reference Table have been provided from September 2005. The U.S. Design Classification and Japanese Design Classification Cross-Reference Table has been provided since December 2006. In addition, information on "screen designs" that corresponds with the Japanese Design Classification (put into force on April 1, 2007) will be added to the "(current) Japanese Design Classification/D terms" in October 2007.


6) Publicly Known Design Materials database search
It has become possible since March 2006 to refer to bibliographic particulars of publicly known design materials and foreign design gazettes by using publicly known materials numbers and others. Image data of publicly known design materials that are permitted for public disclosure has been provided.

Further, the published appeal and trial decisions in 1940, and after, and as related information, the information on appeal and trial decisions, the legal status on applications, registrations and decisions can be referenced.

b) Providing JPO data
In March 1999, the JPO began providing the JPO’s bibliographical and progress information to outside users by organizing and converting it in the standard format for better usability for the users. Further, the service was transferred to the National Center for Industrial Property Information and Training (INPIT) in October 2004, and the service has been provided at a pace of twice a month to the outside users. Bibliographic data of publicly known design materials and foreign design gazettes has been provided since April 2005.
c) Reference to design gazettes, etc
INPIT installed about 145 sets of devices for reference, in the gazette access room on the second floor of the JPO building, to allow the public access to, free of charge, the "IPDL Services,""CD-ROM/DVD-ROM Gazette," and the like.
Reading devices for this purpose are provided at eight other places in Japan (Sapporo, Sendai, Nagoya, Osaka, Hiroshima, Takamatsu, Fukuoka and Naha) where similar reference services and so forth are provided.
A total of approximately 53,000 persons used the services at the above facilities in 2006.

d) Reference to examination and trial documents
INPIT is collecting various technical documents (books, etc.), which are used in the examinations and trials by the JPO, widely from inside and outside of Japan and made available to the public.

e) Intellectual Property Center
59 Intellectual Property Centers throughout the nation have widely implemented support operations for users including regional companies and applicants etc. They have given advice to the users, provided them guidance in retrieval methods of IP information(design information), etc. according to their purposes, regularly conducted workshops and prepared booklets relating to retrieval methods of IP information etc.

URLs of web pages of the Office’s website that provide information on business procedures such as: filing, publication, examination and registration procedures related to industrial designs; opposition and appeal procedures related to industrial designs; etc.

http://www.jpo.go.jp/tetuzuki_e/t_gaiyo_e/de_right.htm

URLs of web pages of the Office’s website that provide a description of information products and services offered by the Office (e.g., industrial design search service(s), industrial design databases, etc.), as well as information on how to access and utilize them

Same as II. 5. above.
The following are the URLs of web pages providing design information. However, information is not provided in bulk format.
http://www.ipdl.inpit.go.jp/Isyou/isyou.htm (web page providing design information in IPDL's website)
http://www.publication.jpo.go.jp/utility/do/usr/topmenu?lang=j (JPO's website for issuing Design Gazettes through the Internet)

VII. Matters concerning mutual exchange of industrial design documentation and information

International or regional cooperation in the exchange of industrial design information, e.g., in the form of official gazettes

The JPO mutually exchanges official gazettes, etc. with 87 organizations (including international organizations) in 74 nations, out of which it sends the CD-ROM Design Gazette to 25 organizations.
As part of the exchange of data between two countries, the JPO has sent to China and the Republic of Korea Design Gazette image data and analyzed D-term data prior to the first publishing of gazettes on CD-ROM, recorded on an electronic medium (DVD-R or the like).

Exchange of machine-readable information, e.g., data contained on CD-ROM or magnetic tape

Since January 2000, design gazettes on CD-ROM have been sent.

VIII. Matters concerning education and training including technical assistance to developing countries (please indicate URLs of web pages of the Office’s website wherever appropriate)

Promotional activities (seminars, exhibitions, visits, advertising, etc.)

a) Briefing sessions
(1)Workshop on IPDL
Workshops for patent search using the Industrial Property Digital Library (IPDL) were held for individuals and medium and small sized companies on holidays.
July 2006           Tokyo
September 2006       Tokyo
November 2006       Osaka
December 2006        Tokyo
                  Nagoya
February 2007        Sendai
                  Fukuoka

The above services have been provided at the National Center for Industrial Property Information and Training (INPIT), an Independent Administrative Institution since October 2004.

b) Patent Information Advisor
In order to realize effective use of IP information in medium and small-sized enterprises and universities/research institutions, INPIT dispatches Patent Information Advisors to each prefecture to give advices on how to search and use IP information and to hold workshops, thus responding to various demands regarding the use of the IP information.

Training courses for national and foreign participants

See previous/next items

Assistance to developing countries (sending consultants and experts, receiving trainees from developing countries, etc.)

a) Activities and assistance through WIPO Funds-in-Trust/Japan
① Holding of workshops
The JPO supported the workshop on “Automation of Intellectual Property Offices and the Development of Intellectual Property Databases” held by WIPO in Indonesia in July 2006. The JPO will also support to hold a workshop on the theme of the “The Role of Automation Process in Effective Management of Intellectual Property Offices and Their Services” in Vietnam in March 2007 to conduct exchanges of opinions on efforts to address computerization-related problems and successful examples of computerization.

②Training for government officials
In cooperation with WIPO, the JPO held the training course on the Use of Information Technology.

b) Assistance to developing countries using other institutions
① Modernization of Intellectual Property Administration
From May 1999 to May 2003, the “Modernization of Industrial Property Administration Project” at the Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines (IP-Phil) to establish patent administration system was carried out by JICA. The JPO dispatched long-term experts for technology transfer and human resource development. The follow-up cooperation project has been carrying out from November 2004. The project will be completed in March 2007.
From April 2000 to June 2004, the "Modernization of Industrial Property Administration Project in Viet Nam", at the National Office of Intellectual Property of Viet Nam (NOIP) was carried out by JICA. This project was aimed at developing human resources through the automation of administrative work in the NOIP. Since January 2005, the project for establishment of IPDL system and e-fling system has been carrying out. The JPO has dispatched long-term experts and has supported the project.
In Malaysia, under a JICA development study scheme, the JPO supported to establish a industrial design administration system of the Intellectual Property Corporation of Malaysia (MyIPO) from July 2002 to February 2005.
In Indonesia, under a JICA development study scheme, the JPO has been supporting the establishment of Intellectual Property Digital Library (IPDL) system at the Directorate General of Intellectual Property Rights (DGIPR) from June 2005. This project will be completed in March 2007

②Training for government officials
The JPO invited 3 counterparts to the JICA experts, who have been dispatched from the JPO to Vietnam and Indonesia on a long-term basis, respectively from Vietnam and Indonesia to provide them with lectures/on-site training on computer-related technology and other technological fields.

Main industrial design and industrial property information magazines/journals published in the country or region of the Office

 

IX.Other general information related to the Office that is available on the Internet -- URLs of web pages of the Office’s website that:

provide information on legislation related to industrial designs

http://www.cas.go.jp/jp/seisaku/hourei/data/DACT.pdf

contain the Annual Report of the Office

http://www.jpo.go.jp/cgi/linke.cgi?url=/shiryou_e/toushin_e/kenkyukai_e/annual_report2006.htm

contain industrial design-related news regarding the Office

http://www.jpo.go.jp/index.htm

X. Other relevant matters

a) A Cross-reference table between International Classification for Industrial Designs (Locarno Classification) and Japanese Design Classification (concordance data)
In order for effective use of the Japanese Design Gazette as examination reference documents in foreign countries, the JPO established the cross-reference table between International Classification for Industrial Designs and Japanese Design Classification (concordance data). As reference information, the JPO lists International Classification in the gazette in addition to Japanese Design Classification.

b) English translation of the Japanese Design Classification
The JPO has prepared an English version of the revised Japanese Design Classification in 2005, which has been posted on the JPO website since October 2006.

c) Information on reference design documents
The JPO provides in Design Gazettes information on reference designs which were referred to by the examiner in the examination process of each registered design.