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Wednesday, 26 March 2008

Madrid amendments for doubly-treatied Union members

The IPKat has learned from the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), via Madrid (Marks) Notification No. 178, of a small but significant amendment to Article 9 sexies of the Madrid Protocol, as adopted on November 12, 2007 by the Assembly of the Madrid Union at its thirty-eighth (17th ordinary) session. The amendment to the Madrid Protocol comes into force on 1 September 2008.

Right: if Madrid Union members don't get this right, they may find tanks on their lawn ...

The new text of Article 9 sexies goes as follows:

"Relations Between States Party to both this Protocol and the Madrid (Stockholm) Agreement

(1) (a) This Protocol alone shall be applicable as regards the mutual relations of States party to both this Protocol and the Madrid (Stockholm) Agreement.

(b) Notwithstanding subparagraph (a), a declaration made under Article 5(2)(b), Article 5(2)(c) or Article 8(7) of this Protocol, by a State party to both this Protocol and the Madrid (Stockholm) Agreement, shall have no effect in the relations with another State party to both this Protocol and the Madrid (Stockholm) Agreement.

(2) The Assembly shall, after the expiry of a period of three years from September 1, 2008, review the application of paragraph (1)(b) and may, at any time thereafter, either repeal it or restrict its scope, by a three-fourths majority. In the vote of the Assembly, only those States which are party to both the Madrid (Stockholm) Agreement and this Protocol shall have the right to participate".
The IPKat reminds readers who may not be intimately familiar with these provisions that the declarations under Articles 5(2)(b) and 5(2)(c) relate to the option of substituting an 18-month period in which a national office can refuse to extend an international application in place of the 12 month period provided under the Madrid Agreement. Article 8(7) permits declarations relating to the manner in which renewal fees can be levied by national offices in accordance with the formula laid down in that provision. Without much background, it looks to him as though this is a case of the Agreement asserting itself over the Protocol though, given modern technology at one end and a growing understanding on the part of national offices on the other that they exist for the benefit of the business community and not the other way round, even 12 months seems like a ridiculously long time or the approval of an international application. Can any reader enlighten him as to the background for this amendment?

Merpel sniffs, I don't know what all this fuss is about. I have relations in Madrid and in Stockholm and we don't need any Protocol to tell us what we can declare or not ...

Tufty adds, whoever edits the entry for Madrid System on Wikipedia needs a gentle prod: this useful resource has not been updated since December 2007.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

given the point of Wikipedia is that anyone can edit it, perhaps Tufty should have a go his/herself

Tufty the Cat said...

I would rather let someone else do the work. Anyway, it would just annoy me to have my well-thought out entries brutally edited by some random freetard, which Wikipedia seems to be full of.

Anonymous said...

What do you mean, a "small" amendment? The article relates to what happens between two countries where both are party to the Agreement and both are also party to the Protocol. The current version (at least, I presume the version you have linked to is the current version) is entitled "Safeguard of the Madrid (Stockholm) Agreement" and section 1 says that the Protocol "shall have no effect". In the new version, section 1(a) says that "This Protocol alone shall be applicable". In other words, the exact* opposite effect, in a section that is currently titled as being a "safeguard"! One wonders what you would consider a big change?

(* - except for the new 1(b), of course)

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