JPO decision highlights (Distinctiveness) [from July to December of 2022]

1. Case in which letter case is decided not to affect the distinctiveness

Appeal No. Present Trademark Class
2022-005778 ETM2023063016 5, etc.
Summary of Decision
The fourth character “i” in the present trademark is written in lowercase. However, certain characters in trademarks represented by Latin alphabets are often written in lowercase. Additionally, the “i” in question does not exhibit any embellishments or alterations that would render it unrecognizable as an “i”. Therefore, it can be easily recognized and understood as “RAPID” in its entirety.
“RAPID” carry the meaning of “swift” or similar concepts, while “TEST” convey the meaning of “examination” or “inspection”. Taken as a whole, it can be reasonably inferred that the present trademark implies the notion of “swift testing” or “rapid examination”. In fact, there are instances where products used for rapid testing are labeled as “RAPID TEST”.
Therefore, it is appropriate to conclude that the present trademark merely represents the quality, purpose, or nature of the goods and services, without exceeding the ordinary methods of representation.

2. Case in which the distinctiveness of a trademark containing a word with multiple meanings is discussed

Appeal No. Present Trademark Class
2021-014409 ROBOT Farm 7, 9, 42
Summary of Decision
The constituent “Farm” in the present trademark has meanings beyond “farm,” including “storage facility” and “a place with many things arranged” Furthermore, the usage of “XX Farm” (where “XX” is a noun) like “Wind Farm” (a wind power plant), “Server Farm” (a location with multiple servers for computer networks or a group of servers providing the same service), “Link Farm” (a group of pages or sites with a large number of links pointing to the target page), and “Render Farm” (a cluster of computers used for rendering visual effects) is recorded in dictionary entries, signifying various connotations such as “a place where XX is produced” or “a place where XX is collected.”
In this regard, it cannot be said that the present trademark consisting of the words “ROBOT Farm” conveys a specific and widely understood meaning in relation to the designated goods and services of the present application. Therefore, it is reasonable to consider the present trademark as a coined term.
Consequently, the present trademark does not merely indicate the quality of the goods; rather, it can serve as a distinctive identifier for both the goods and services, distinguishing them from others.


  • The logic behind this decision is that Consumers do not instantly  understand the quarity of the goods by a trademark that have multiple meanings. Therefore, it works in favor of Applicant if  a trademark contains a word which have multiple meanings.