17 Seconds #16

Bite-sized patent and trademark goodness.

17 Seconds

There are about 30 million companies in the US, but there are only about 4 million trademarks in the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) trademark database. The average company has about four trademarks: their name, their logo, their product name or service name, and their tagline. This means that there are only about one million unique companies in the USPTO’s trademark database. Put another way, about 97% of US companies (29 of 30 million) have filed no trademark applications at all.

In the Internet age, it is likely that many companies’ products and services are being advertised and sold across state lines and that, as a result, many more companies qualify for federal trademark protection than file.

17 Seconds #15

Useful, quick.

17 Seconds

One story.

A lobsterman based in Portland, Maine, was giving a guest a tour of Casco Bay, which is notoriously tricky to navigate. As the lobsterman navigated the boat to and fro, the guest was clearly getting antsy. “Man, you’re going fast,” said the guest nervously, “you must really know where all of the rocks are!” Without missing a beat, the lobsterman calmly replied, “Nope, know where they ain’t!”

“Knowing where they ain’t” is the key to drafting smart patent and trademark applications. Clocktower does a patent search before every patent filing and a trademark search before every trademark filing, because the key to successfully prosecuting both patents and trademarks is knowing where the prior art is (for patents) and prior trademarks are – and then avoiding them.

Two updates.

As of 09/01/15, we are increasing the amount we charge for non-Madrid trademark filings from “$3000 including government fees for 1 class” to “$3000 excluding all government fees” This is because the fees for non-Madrid filings are significant and add up quickly. Fortunately, more countries are expected to join the Madrid Protocol soon (including Canada).

Clocktower’s proposal says, “For billing, we use QuickBooks Pro 2014, apologize in advance for its quirkiness, and are actively seeking its replacement.” This month we are testing whether QuickBooks Online (QBO) will be a viable replacement for QuickBooks Pro. We anticipate the transition to be painful and mistake-ridden. And we thank you in advance for your patience. As for the anticipated mistakes, our mistake policy is also in our proposal: “Clocktower is not perfect, no law firm is perfect. When we make a mistake, we will admit it, fix it as soon as possible, to the best of our ability, to the extent possible, and at no charge to you.”

Thank you for your referrals and your business!