Annual Technical Report 2004 on Trademark Information Activities submitted by Austria (SCIT/ATR/TM/2004/AT)


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I. Evolution of registration activities

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

The following numbers of trademark applications and registrations in Austria in 2004 are presented in comparison with the numbers in 2003 (=100%):
National applications:
8.426 in 2003
8.385 in 2004 (-0,50%)

National registrations:
6.835 in 2003
7.700 in2004 (+12,66%)

MMA/MMP applications based on Austrian trademarks:
0.964 in 2003
1.188 in 2004 (+23,24%)

International registrations with effect in Austria:
12.948 in 2003
12.316 in 2004 (-4,88%)

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

In the year 2004 the number of national applications kept constant, the number of national registrations grew due to a change in the procedure.

In the international field the number of applications based on austrian trademarks increased clearly.

A general trend for a reduction in national trademark applications could not be observed, the high level of 2001 was almost reached again. In spite of the possibility of a CTM application the number of requests for an international registration on the basis of domestic trademarks increased.

As in 2003, 88% of the national applications originated from Austrian enterprises.

About 58.129 Community Trademark applications, which also have effect in Austria, were filed at the Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market (Trademarks, Designs and Models) in Alicante. This represents a modest increase over the numbers of the year 2003.

Approx. 34.486 trademarks were registered at the Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market in the year 2004, which came into effect for the whole EU and thus also for the territory of the Republic of Austria.

Also the number of effective trademark rights has further increased: 108.422 signs were protected as national trademarks by the end of 2004. This is an increase of 3% compared with the year 2003.

The oldest trademark in force in Austria is still the one that was filed on April 2nd, 1859.

About 250.000 signs are protected as international trademarks with respect to Austria. Adding the effective community trademarks, nearly 560.000 signs in total are protected as trademarks in the territory of the Republic of Austria.

The majority of applications were filed in the class 9, followed by the classes 35, 16, 3 and 5.

II. Matters concerning the generation, reproduction, and distribution of secondary sources of trademark information, i.e., trademark gazettes

Publishing, printing, copying techniques

The Austrian Trademark Gazette is a separately published, monthly issued bulletin which exclusively relates to trademark information. Its production employs a Desktop Publishing program adapted to the special requirements of the office. The production works with a master copy, from which the paper copies are made.

Main types of announcements of the Office in the field of trademark information

The Austrian Trademark Gazette is published monthly on paper.

In house and via Internet the bibliographic data and images of active national and international trademarks are searchable.

Mass storage media and microforms used

As mass storage means magnetic disks are used for the bibliographic data, for all word marks and for the wording of combined word and figurative marks as well as for the figurative elements of national trademarks.

Word processing and office automation

National trademark applications and incoming lettters are scanned with EPOSCAN. Outgoing letters are prepared with MS-Word via a workflow-management system including an in-house online file-inspection since the year 2000.

III. Matters concerning classifying, reclassifying and indexing of trademark information

Classification and reclassification activities; Classification systems used, e.g., International Classification of Goods and Services for the Purposes of the Registration of Marks (Nice Classification), International Classification of the Figurative Elements of Marks (Vienna Classification), other classification (please indicate whether goods and services for the registration of marks and whether the figurative elements of marks are classified by your Office and, if so, which classification(s) is (are) used)

The Nice Classification Systems of Goods and Services, Eighth Edition, is used for the registration of marks. The applicants are not obliged to use pre-defined terms of the classification system. Classification symbols are allotted by the applicant. The symbols are checked by examiners of the trademark department in the course of the examination procedure and are used for the registered marks.

For the classification of figurative elements of marks the Vienna Classification system, 5th edition, is applied.

The bibliographic data of trademarks are indexed for quick online inquiry purposes.

Obligation for applicants to use pre-defined terms of the classification applied

The applicants are not obliged to use pre-defined terms of the classification system.

Bibliographic data and processing for search purposes

Bibliographic data elements and classifications are searchable. The images are displayed together with these data elements.

This search is avaialable inhouse and via Internet.

For image similarity search during the procedure an additional database (Oracle) is used which allows the image search based on Vienna classifcation.

IV. Trademark manual search file establishment and upkeep

File Building

In 1996 the manual search files were replaced by an electronic storage and retrieval system, please see also item V.

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

The Austrian Patent Office receives the Trademark Gazettes from: Australia, Bulgaria, Denmark, Germany, France, Belgium, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Romania, Russia, Sweden, Switzerland, Spain, Czech Republic, Hungary, United States of America, United Kingdom, Vietnam and from the OHIM.
These gazettes are stored in the reading room of the public library.

V. Activities in the field of computerized trademark search systems

In-house systems (online/offline)

The examination of trademark applications as to similarity is completely executed by electronic means. The database includes national trademarks , community trademarks and international trademarks valid in Austria.

External databases

Access to the database ROMARIN and to the bibliographic data of “Community Trademark Applications” is available and also used for information services.

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

The complete register of national trademarks is available in an electronic version. The project of converting the paper version of the national register of trademarks to an electronic register was finalized in 2001.

An electronic registry for Appeals and Nullities including information about the procedural steps is accessible via the office´ s intranet.

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

Hardware: From Pentium III 800 MHz to Pentium IV 2,4 GHz for all examiners via Ethernet-LAN, two flat-screen monitors for all trademarks examiners, leased lines to Internet.

Software: Windows Operating System (Win2000, WinXP), in house document management system for trademarks, Host System Siemens BS2000.

VI. Administration of trademark services available to the public (relating to facilities, e.g., for lodging applications, registering trademarks, assisting clients with search procedures, obtaining official publications and registry extracts)

The Austrian Patent Office offers free information services concerning questions on legal matters, on details of registration procedures, property rights or due fees relating to trademarks which can be submitted verbally (personally or by telephone). An information center is established which also provides information about registered international trademarks with effect for Austria, and about community trademarks of the European Union. This information covers all bibliographic data of the mentioned protection rights. This inquiry can also be made in the library by self-service (with support of the library personnel) on computer workstations.

Information about the due date of next renewal fee for a trademark and about amounts and methods of payment is available at any time via Internet by entering the application or register number.

Information services of the Service and Information Sector (serv.ip, former TRF)

The Service and Information Sector of the Austrian Patent Office (serv.ip) exists since the fall of 1994 pursuant to the appropriate regulations of the amendment of the Patent Law of 1992 and the corresponding ordinance of 1994.
It offers customer-oriented service and information products in the area of patents, trademarks and designs in a commercial manner.
In particular, following commercial services are offered by the Service and Information Sector:

- trademark similarity search
- a similarity record including colour images
- trademark monitoring
- information in written form
- uncertified register extracts
- express services concerning national and international trademark
similarity searches, register extracts as well as written information
- external on-line information
- translation of the list of goods and services from the German into
French or English

The homepage of the Austrian Patent Office contains general information as well as detailed references for applicants concerning forms for application and the current fees for all industrial property rights. All register data, especially information about time limit and amount of the next annual fee, are free of charge. Full access to the database of the Austrian Patent Office, which covers all property rights for Austria according to different search criteria, e.g. owner, inventor, international patent classification, application and register number, is made possible by using a password. This database also allows searching for the mark wording of all trademarks registered for Austria.


VII. Matters concerning mutual exchange of trademark documentation and information

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

The Austrian Trademark Gazette is exchanged on a bilateral basis with almost all of the PCT Member States and OHIM. In addition, the office receives the trademark gazettes of WIPO.

Exchange of machine-readable information

Machine-readable information exchange of industrial design and trademark data has been started for the EU-project e-Mage, which now is in test.

Aim of e-Mage: Online-Search in industrial design + trademark databases. Data from France, Portugal, Hungary, Austria, international design + trademarks, Community trademarks + design; open to other countries. Search via bibliographic data and/or similarity search via images. Natural langugage search in classifications.

VIII. Matters concerning education and training including technical assistance to developing countries

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

External seminars are frequently organized together with partners, like the Institute for Promotion of Trade and Industry (WIFI), technology transfer centres, universities, other authorities, inventor’s federation or the bar association. The cooperation with partners frequently improves the contacts to the target groups using the existing communication structure. Seminars take place also in cooperation with other offices

Seminars on industrial property rights, including trademarks held by the Austrian Patent Office during 2004:
27 seminars for Universities, with 805 participants
5 seminars for high schools, with 151 participants
17 seminars for SMEs, with 924 participants
7 participations on exhibitions and fairs

Training courses for national and foreign participants

Visits from the following offices at the Autrian office during 2004: Slovenia, China and GCC.

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

WIPO-Austria Training Course on Patent Documentation and Information with participants from Egypt, Fiji, Ghana, Indonesia, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Turkish Republic and Ukraine.

IX. Other relevant matters

For further information about activities of the office in 2004 please refer also to the “Annual Report of the Austrian Patent Office 2004”, published in German and English on the homepage of the office.