On 15 January the IPKat reported on a press release announcing a strike of employees of the Office for Harmonisation in the Internal Market (OHIM), the Office which administers Community trade marks (CTMs) and Community designs. He queried whether there really was a strike or whether the press release was a hoax. Well, he has since received clarification from the OHIM's Staff Committee to the effect that there had indeed been a strike. The strange form of the press release was the result of the Committee’s unfamiliarity with that medium. Almost all the coverage of the strike was in the Spanish media, which is why the IPKat had no luck seeking independent English-language corroboration of it.

The strikers’ Committee maintains that it is in the interests of the staff and the users that this action was carried out. It says:

“If the impression that little work is being done in the Office actually arises, this may well be due to the situation facing the staff. Too few people are having to carry out more and more tasks for which they were neither hired nor adequately trained. This causes longer and longer delays for cases which are difficult”.

Giving an example, the Committee cite the new OHIM policy of getting the secretarial staff to classify goods and services according to the Nice classification, a practice it describes as “a danger to the system”.

The IPKat would like to hear comments from the following: (i) employees who are anxious to expose poor working practices within the Office; (ii) CTM applicants and their representatives, who would like to mention either particularly good or particularly bad experiences arising from their dealings with OHIM and (iii) representatives of OHIM itself, who bear the responsibility for the efficient working of the CTM system.

Humble pie here and here
Hoaxes here
Hoaxes that turn out to be true here, here and here

ALICANTE "HOAX" TURNS OUT TO BE A REAL STRIKE ALICANTE "HOAX" TURNS OUT TO BE A REAL STRIKE Reviewed by Jeremy and Ilanah on Monday, January 26, 2004 Rating: 5

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