The trademark registration process in Canada will have some significant changes this year as a result of the trademark law reform which has been addopted recently.
The main changes that have to be taken into account by all who want to protect a trademark in there are:
1. The term of trademark protection will be reduced from 15 to 10 years.
2. Declaration of Use will be no longer required from trademark applicants – as it is well-known Canada, similarly to The US, has required until now such declarations which to show a real use of the sign on the market. This was one of the significant differences when it comes to trademark filing compare to Europe, for instance. But no more. Still, trademark use will remain an important element of the protection because it will be a ground for invalidation in the case of a lack of genuine use.
3. Canada will introduce Nice Classification for goods and services for the purpose of trademark filing. In that way, Canada has joined almost all countries around the world that already use this classification.
4. An additional fee will be paid for every class above the first in case of filling of a trademark application or trademark renewal.
Source: April L. Besl (Dinsmore & Shohl LLP), Lexology.
The European Commission published answers to a variety of questions regarding the Copyright reform that has been approved recently. The questions are as follow:
1. The European Parliament voted on the new copyright rules at EU level – what are they about?
2. Why do we need to modernise the EU copyright rules?
3. Are the new copyright rules limiting users and their freedom online?
4. Will the Directive impose upload filters online?
5. Will the Copyright Directive prevent users from expressing themselves on internet in the same way as now? Will memes and GIFs be banned?
6. How will the new Copyright rules tackle the discrepancy between the remuneration of creators and that of certain online platforms (the so-called ‘value gap’)?
7. How will the new copyright rules on user-uploaded platforms benefit the users?
8. What are the services covered by the new rules on user-uploaded platforms?
9. What will be the special regime for startups and smaller enterprises?
10. What will happen to online encyclopaedias (like Wikipedia) that are based on content uploaded by users?
11. How will the new press publishers’ right work?
12. Are small and emerging press publishers going to be affected by the reform?
13. Is the new Copyright Directive creating a “hyperlink tax”?
14. With the new rules, will the use of “snippets” be forbidden?
15. How will the new Directive benefit journalism and journalists?
16. How will the Directive ensure fair remuneration for individual authors and performers?
17. How will the new copyright rules strike a fairer balance in the relationships between creators and their contractual partners?
18. What is the contract adjustment mechanism? Does it interfere with contractual freedom?
19. What is the revocation mechanism and why is it needed?
20. What are the new exceptions to copyright laid down in the Copyright Directive?
21. How will the new copyright rules benefit researchers?
22. What is the purpose of the other, general, text and data mining exception?
23. Who will benefit from the new teaching exception?
24. Will the new copyright rules enhance the preservation and availability of cultural heritage?
25. What will it change for users with regards to “public domain” content?
26. How will the new copyright rules foster the availability of EU audiovisual works on video-on-demand platforms?
You can find the answers here.
Today, 26.03.2018, the European Parliament approved the controversial copyright reform with 348 votes in favor, 274 against. This brings the reform one step closer to its final adoption in the EU. What will follow is formal approval by the European ministers. In a nutshell this reform concerns:
- Social media platforms will have to keep even a closer eye on every possible copyright violation;
- Web content providers will have to sign license agreements with right holders;
- News providers will have to negotiate and get a license from publishers in order to use their news and articles;
- Non-profit organizations, including websites such as Wikipedia, are not bound to these rules;
- Startup companies with annual turnover up to 10 million dollars are excluded too.
More information can be found here.
Some important changes to the Trademark law in Mexico came into force on 10.08.2018. According to them:
- non-traditional marks are allowed for protection;
- consent letters and coexistence agreements will be accepted by the Patent Office;
- refusals based on lack of distinctiveness will be overcome by acquired distinctiveness;
- the Patent Office will issue decisions on trademark oppositions;
- all Office actions will be published in its official gazette;
- there will be a 10% reduction in office fees for online applications for trademarks;
In addition to this: “In particular, for all trademarks filed or granted after 10 August 2018, submision of a declaration of actual and effective use will be required once the trademark becomes subject to use (the declaration needs to be presented within 3 months once 3 years have elapsed since registration of the trademark).”
Furthermore: “Another important change brand owners have to be aware of is that trademarks can no longer be filed for a broad range of goods and services but only for the specific goods and services of interest.”
Source: Bernardo Herrerias Franco, Alfredo Pineda Nieto and Valentina Schmid (Hogan Lovells) on Lexology.