The UKIPO has ruled in oppositions against the following trademark applications all for class 30, filed by Cadbury:
– № 3019361, with the following description: The colour purple (Pantone 2685C), as shown on the form of application, applied to the packaging of goods.
– № 3019362, with the following description: The colour purple (Pantone 2685C), as shown on the form of application, applied to the whole visible surface of the packaging of the goods.
– № 3025822, with the following description: The colour purple (Pantone 2685C), shown on the form of application.
Against these applications Nestle filed oppositions with the following arguments:
- The reference in the description to a Pantone number is a necessary but not
sufficient condition for the Application to comply with Section 1(1);
- The reference in the description to something “being shown on the form of
application” does not comply with the requirement of being self-contained,
intelligible and/or accessible. The application form does not form part of the
public register and those consulting the public register are unable to ascertain
from that the nature of the material referred to in the description.
- The reference in the description to something being “applied to the packaging
of the goods” imports a reference to a means of configuration or
representation which is not shown on the register and which may comprise a
potentially limitless number of signs/means of representation.
- The reference in the description to “the whole visible surface” is inherently
ambiguous because the public and competitors will assume – and the
applicant intends – that less than the whole visible surface is in fact meant by
the words “whole visible surface” since products of this kind must of necessity
bear words, logos and other elements of different colours on the surface of
The UKIPO agreed that in the case of trademarks 3019361 and 3025822 their descriptions create ambiguity regarding what exactly these signs represent.
Regarding trademark 3019362, however, the UKIPO considered that the above-mentioned conclusion is not relevant because the trademark’s description gives an idea of what exactly trademark dimensions are.