什麼樣的商標可以註冊律師張源傑

What kind of trademark can be registered?

By Yuan Jie, Cheng (Attorney-At-Law)

一、前言:

1. Introduction:

如果一個商標是在說明商品或服務來自於特定業者,則可以註冊;如果一個商標是在說明商品或服務的內容是什麼,就不可以註冊。

If a trademark is describing its product and service for a particular industry, such trademark can be registered; however if a trademark is describing what a particular goods and services are, such trademark cannot be registered.

二、什麼樣的商標可以申請註冊[1]:

What kind of trademark can be registered?[1]

第一種可以註冊的商標,例如google。Google使用於網路搜尋之網站,是一個與網路搜尋毫不相關的名稱,也就是完全創新的名稱,因此可以註冊。反之,如果想註冊「網路搜尋」「快速」等商標於網路搜尋網站,因為這些名稱與服務之內容相同或是相關,因此不得註冊。

第二種可以註冊的商標,例如Apple。Apple是電腦製造商,雖然使用了蘋果一詞,但賣的是電腦,與蘋果全然無關,因此可以註冊。反之,Apple如果用於果汁、水果、或是香料等與蘋果會有相關之商品時,則不得註冊。

第三種可以註冊的商標,例如快譯通用於電子字典。快譯通三個字並非直接敘述電子字典之功能,可是當消費者運用一些想像、思考、感受或推理後,才能夠領會商標與商品或服務間有關連性,因此可以註冊。

First kind of trademark can be registered is Google, for example. Google uses its Internet search engine, which is completely an innovative name and can therefore be registered as search and network. On the other hand, if you want to register “internet search” “speed” which are relevant to internet search engine’s website and to register them with your trademark, such keywords can’t be registered due to its similarities with its name and service contents.

Second kind of trademark can be registered is Apple, for example. Apple is classified as computer manufacture, even though apple uses its name ‘Apple’ but its product is completely irrelevant to Apple, therefore it can be registered. On the other hand, if Apple uses its brand name to sell juices, fruits, spices, or any associated merchandise of Apple, such name cannot be registered.

Third kind of trademark can be registered is instant dictionary, for example, that is used for electronic dictionary. Instant dictionary does not directly describe its electronic dictionary function, but consumers would need to use some imagination, consideration and feelings associated with analysis before knowing such trademark does associate to its electronic product and services. Therefore such trademark can be registered.

三、爭議之產生

3. Arising Controversial Issues

上述第三種可以註冊之商標,很容易產生爭議。快譯通三個字,難道不是在描述電子字典之特性嗎?電子字典特質不就是比紙本字典「快」,翻「譯」之功能以及「通」曉文義之作用嗎?

反觀主管機關對於「自然呼吸」之商標用於襪子申請卻拒絕註冊[2]。判決理由認為自然呼吸四個字會讓人聯想到這種襪子穿了之後有自然透氣的舒適感,因此自然呼吸四個字是對商品之說明,而不是只有隱喻的性質。試問:襪子會自然呼吸難道不是消費者經由想像、思考、感受或推理而得來的感受嗎?難道襪子有肺而且能自然呼吸嗎?認定標準到底在哪裡呢?

The three examples listed above are examples can be registered as trademark. However there may be some controversial issues arises along the way. For example, many people may have question of doubt that isn’t the name “instant dictionary” relevant to electronic dictionary’s characteristics? The nature of electronic dictionary carries its meaning that it’s ‘faster’ than normal paper dictionary, the word ‘translation’s functionality is the same as knowledgeable?

On the other hand, the managerial authorities rejected its application in relation to socks when it comes to the word “natural breathing”[2] The judicial reasoning behind this was due to the word “natural breathing” would implies with natural breathable comfort which isn’t metaphor in nature. Unless socks itself have lungs that is naturally breathable, isn’t it true that socks should be naturally breathable for consumers to use its imagination, consideration and judgment to have this kind of feelings? Where are the standard criteria when it comes to classification as such?

四、結論

4.  Conclusion

商標能否註冊之抽象標準看似無困難,但是實務個案之具體認定差異甚大。一個商標是否能註冊,往往牽涉到主管機關之主觀判斷,沒有一定之標準。遇到被主管機關核駁申請時,宜採取訴願、行政訴訟等方式請求救濟,以確保權益。

It is not difficult to know whether such trademark can be registered at surface, however due to people’s different perception to things, each case may be different depending on its authorities’ subjective judgment. There is no standard set of criteria. If authorities reject your trademark application, appeals or administrative litigation would be another option to guarantee your right.

[1]商標識別性審查基準,中華民國101年4月20日經濟部經授智字第10120030550號令修正發布,101年7月1日生效。

[2]行政法院88年度判字第3869號判決。



[1] Trademark Recognition benchmark, granted by Chilean Ministry of Economy Order amendment number 10120030550 announced on 20th April 2012, in force on 1st July 2012.

[2] Administrative Court, No. 3869, 88th year judgment.

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