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What a trademark is like everyone can see – but, is it so obvious indeed? Part 5 – a sound

 

The issue of what a trademark is and its legal definition was already discussed in the previous parts of this series. Now, let us have a closer look at yet another kind of unconventional trademarks (apart from the most popular ones, such as word, word-figurative or figurative marks) – a sound trademark. A sound trademark is a mark which consists exclusively of a sound, or a combination of sounds.

This kind of trademark shall be presented in the form of an audio file, or by expressing the sound by means of a musical notation – namely, musical notes (including all the necessary elements for a proper interpretation of the tune: tone, tempo, text), or a soundtrack recording presented in the form of an oscillogram.

In the case of electronic applications for sound trademarks expressed in the form of a musical notation or an oscillogram, it is required that a musical notation or an oscillogram is filed in one JPEG file, on one page.

As regards paper applications for sound trademarks, an application for registration should include a musical notation or an oscillogram placed upon one print in the size not smaller than 8 cm by 8 cm, and not bigger than 10 cm by 10 cm, or upon one A4 sheet.

Here is an example of a sound trademark presented as a musical notation:

R.171836

For the above mentioned trademark the Polish Patent Office granted a right of protection under no. R.171836 in the name of RADIO MUZYKA FAKTY GRUPA RMF sp. z o. o. sp. k. from Cracow (a popular radio station), and the mark was destined for goods and services in classes 09, 16, 35, 38, 40, 41, 42, 43, such as “information processing apparatus, loudspeakers, computers, magazines; services in the field of radio, television and cinema advertising, information agency services, printshop services, edition of radio and TV programs, snack bar services and hotel services.” Below there is an example of a sound trademark presented in the form of an oscillogram. The mark was registered by EUIPO under no. EUTM-012438628 in the name of TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX FILM CORPORATION in respect of goods and services in classes 09, 38 and 42, including among others “scientific, nautical, surveying, photographic, cinematographic, optical, weighing, measuring, signaling, checking (supervision), life-saving and teaching apparatus and instruments; apparatus and instruments for conducting, switching, transforming, accumulating, regulating or controlling electricity; apparatus for recording, transmission or reproduction of sound or images; telecommunication services; radio broadcasting services; television broadcasting services; podcasting services; computer services in the field of providing on-line news and information via the Internet; designing, constructing, updating and/or maintaining on-line databases and search engines; designing, constructing, updating and/or maintaining on-line directories, databases, and search engines for obtaining data on a wide variety of topics and fields; hosting of digital content on the Internet; application service provider; designing, constructing, updating and/or maintaining on-line journals and blogs; design and development of computer hardware and software.”

An example of a sound trademark written with an oscillogram:

EUTM 012438628

Read the full article on IP-BLOG.