Hasbro's 'Transformers' TM Dodges TRAB Revocation (For Now) on Procedural Issues

发布时间: 2018/5/9 11:58:00

  For the once-young generations, the cartoon "Transformers" is loaded with sweet childhood memories. The US-based Hasbro Company is the producer and brand owner of the cartoon. With no surprise, Hasbro registered "变形金刚THE TRANSFORMERS" (the trademark in dispute), certified to be used on clothing. Its life span, however, was almost cut short by a revocation decision of the Trademark Review and Adjudication Board (TRAB)。 The death sentence to the trademark was called off recently by Beijing High People's Court in its final-instance decision. Now by court order, TRAB has to take a de novo look at the case.

  The world- renowned toy company Hasbro was founded in 1923. It purchased the US-based Milton Bradley International and bought the toy line "transformers" from the Japan-based TAKARA in 1984. In China, Milton Bradley filed the registration application for the trademark in dispute and obtained the official approval to be used in Class 25 products including clothing, socks and hats. The trademark in dispute was later approved to be transferred to Hasbro in November 2015.

  Dekus of South Korea filed for the revocation application of the trademark in dispute to the Trademark Office (TMO) on the ground that the trademark was not in use for 3 consecutive years from June 19, 2009 to June 18, 2012 (the designated period)。 After examination, the TMO revoked the trademark in dispute holding that the evidence furnished by Hasbro was not sufficient to prove the commercial use of the trademark in dispute. The disgruntled Hasbro lodged a re-examination request to the TRAB.

  In January 2015, the TRAB sided with the TMO on similar grounds. Hasbro then brought the case to Beijing IP Court.

  The Beijing IP Court revoked the decision by the TRAB on its wrongdoing in procedural issues and ordered it to take a new look at the case. The TRAB did not buy the decision and appealed to the Beijing High People's Court.

  Beijing High found that the TRAB sent the notice of evidence exchange to Hasbro on January 9, 2015. The earliest date that Hasbro received the notice was January 10, 2015. The signature date that Hasbro responded with the evidential materials was February 9, 2015 well within the 30 days upon receiving the notice. The TRAB should have given Hasbro 30 days for response. Instead it rendered a decision on January 29, 2015, an apparent violation of procedural requirements. In this connection, Beijing High rejected the appeal from the TRAB and upheld the decision of the first instance.(by Wang Guohao)

  (Editor Li Xingyi)

  (All contents of this newspaper may not be reproduced or used without express permission)

主办单位:中国知识产权报社 未经许可不得复制