The IPKat is filled with reforming zeal this morning, since he has identified a dreadful blot on the escutcheon of that fairest of jewels in the European Union's crown, OHIM. He wants to see an end to the tiresome and carbon-costly naming of the place that deals with Community trade marks and designs as the "Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market (Trade Marks and Designs) (OHIM)", which is how it is always referred to on the European Court of Justice's Curia website, or as the "Trade Marks and Designs Registration Office of the European Union", which is how it is designated on the English version of its website (click here for the French and German versions). Apart from the fact that it wastes print cartridges and consumes space on the page, it's also a dreadful mouthful to say and increases the risk of repetitive strain injury (if that condition exists) among typists. In short, it's an ugly affront to the fabled European skills of design and style-creation.
To this end, the IPKat is running a poll (see the sidebar on the left) to choose the name from which the office, European legislation permitting, should preferably be known from 1 January 2010. Your choices are as follows:
* Retain Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market (Trade Marks and Designs) (OHIM) on the basis that at least we know what it is, thanks to distinctiveness acquired through years of use [If you use Twitter, beware: this name consumes 80 out of your 140 available characters];After much thought, the IPKat decided not to add Shangri-La or its close and not inappropriate neighbour Shangri-Law, notwithstanding the paradisaic conditions in Alicante, lest the decision should ever be taken to move the office to some less attractive location.
* opt for Trade Marks and Designs Registration Office of the European Union, which does at least have the virtue of describing some of the things done there, along with oppositions, cancellations and very, very rarely, short lunch breaks and restitutio in integrum [Twitter factor, 65];
* Throw national pride to the wind and go for OAMI, the office's suave, slightly seductive Spanish acronym;
* Find something quite funky and in-yer-face like The Brand and Design Factory;
* Follow the admirable example of Australia and choose IP Europe.
If you don't like any of the above -- or even if you do, but you have a better idea -- email your own suggestion to the IPKat here and let him know. If there are any really good suggestions, he'll organise another poll in which the best new ideas will be run off against whichever name tops this poll.
This poll is emphatically open to employees of the European Commission and its various organs, whose creativity is welcome.