IPO online: the new site ... at first sight

It was supposed to be launched on Monday 1 December, but the ever-enterprising IPO (formerly the UK-IPO) got its newly-designed website up and running on a wet, windy evening on the last night of November. After making so many criticisms of the site's previous makeover, the IPKat was given the opportunity to come in and play with a beta version of the new one (well done, IPO, get your critics onside!) and he spent some two hours working his way through it and making suggestions that were, in his eyes at any rate, perfectly reasonable.

Last time round, the Kats and their readers all complained about how frustrating it is when, following a makeover, beloved and well-used site bookmarks suddenly cease to work. The IPO has pledged to re-direct those most commonly-used (they are aiming for the top 100) in order to minimise this particular form of user rage. The office has also altered the design and layout, while a new Professionals area will make it easier to navigate without having the need to bookmark so many pages in future (the IPKat says, this will initially be of greater assistance to newcomers who haven't yet bookmarked pages but intend to do so, rather than those whose comfy arrangements are about to get the shock treatment -- but it's a nod to user needs and that's very much appreciated).

The monstrous "characters" which the IPKat picked up on last week (here) are to be banished from the main pages of the new website, being confined to a game on the standard (ie non-professional) side of the website as part of the office's "education and awareness" remit (the quotation marks surrounding the words education and awareness were donated to the IPKat by the IPO itself). The office has some other games too (the IPKat was exposed to early versions of "Spotting the trade mark", which the Kat thought quite positive and "IP armour", for which no evil fate can arrive too soon). Filament Fred will also be kept well away from the professional side of the website. He is apparently "aimed at users with little or no IP knowledge ... so that they make sensible decisions about what a good invention or trade mark is". If Filament Fred can do this, says Merpel, I'm taking up alchemy.

Now here's a challenge. The IPKat, pretending to be a new user and starting at the home page, tried to find a page corresponding to one of his favourites on the old site that lists all the decisions of the Trade Mark Registry in ex parte and inter partes disputes. He did it in 16 clicks but he thinks he visited some of the same pages two or three times on the way. The challenge is this: what's the smallest number of clicks you really need?

Web rage here, here and here
How to cope with web rage -- the IPKat's recommendation here
IPO online: the new site ... at first sight IPO online: the new site ... at first sight Reviewed by Jeremy on Monday, December 01, 2008 Rating: 5


  1. Two - I think

    1 - 'IP Professionals' (top right)
    2 - 'Trade marks: results of past decisions' (On TM tab middle of page)

  2. I think the new website is a vast improvement over the old one, and it's not just because the IPKat is top of the UK-IPO's 'IP on the net' page. It loads faster, is much clearer to navigate and things are (in general) easier to find.

  3. I was hoping to kill some time on the IP Armour game, but the link doesn't work. . . . Though the 404 page is quite pretty.

  4. If you want to find the trade mark decisions without letting on that you know what you're doing, it can be done in five clicks - click on:

    Trade marks
    Other people's trade marks
    Objecting and challenging
    Hearings, appeals and previous decisions
    Results of past decisions

    But I've not found the cartoon characters - could you let on where they are, please?


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