In this approved series, civic IP offices allotment the avant-garde accoutrement and casework they accept launched or are developing for the future. Today, we focus on accession at the French Institute of Automated Acreage (INPI).
For the accomplished four years, WTR has ranked the arch 50 IP offices beyond the apple by the non-core accoutrement and casework they offer. In that time, the French INPI has consistently ranked highly. In this year’s ranking, appear beforehand this year, the bureau ranked in 14th place. In 2019, the arrangement was decidedly acclaimed for its acquaintance and apprenticeship offerings, including publishing an absolute affection accretion on its efforts.
Today, INPI CEO Pascal Faure writes alone for WTR on the assorted avant-garde accoutrement and casework it offers – and reveals some of those planned for the future.
Has the arrangement fabricated any cogent changes to its website to advance functionality and user acquaintance in the accomplished 12 months?
Under the 2017-2020 Achievement and Objectives Agreement, we were tasked with the complete digitalisation of our procedures and the advance of both the affection of account provided to applicants and beneficiaries, and the abutment provided to companies, decidedly start-ups, scale-ups and avant-garde SMEs. These cardinal areas are at the affection of our accomplishments and are reflected in the connected development of our online services.
The accomplished 12 months in France accept been apparent by aloft changes in the acreage of automated property: the PACTE Act – the government’s Activity Plan for Business Growth and Transformation – which was implemented in several stages amid December 2019 and July 2020, has afflicted the legislation on trademarks, patents and account certificates. The aim of this legislation is to activity French companies, and SMEs in particular, easier, added able and added bit-by-bit admission to automated property, by accouterment them with added reliable automated acreage rights.
These new casework prompted us to analysis all of our procedures. Our online casework were additionally brought into band with the new legislation. At the aforementioned time, we fabricated ample efforts in acceding of admonition to ensure that applicants were able to familiarise themselves with these procedures. In accession to our online services, the admonition on our website was additionally revised and updated.
Lastly, we accept created a chatbot committed to online procedures. This apparatus has appreciably bigger the online abutment accessible to applicants.
Does the anthology activity online filing of trademarks?
Not alone does the INPI activity online filing of trademarks, it additionally provides for the online filing of all formalities apropos to the actuality of trademarks and items apropos to assorted procedures with the French Apparent & Brand Arrangement (renewals, annal on the Brand Register, as able-bodied as activity procedures and applications for abolishment or acknowledgment of invalidity). As a result, the absolute brand activity can be agitated out online.
As mentioned above, over the accomplished 12 months, the INPI has implemented all of the changes appropriate by the accomplishing of the EU Directive of 16 December 2015 (incorporated into the PACTE Act), in accurate the achievability of filing new types of trademarks, aggregate and acceding trademarks, as able-bodied as applications for abolishment or acknowledgment of invalidity.
Does the anthology activity a searchable database of brand applications/registrations on its own web platform?
Since 2009, the INPI has offered a chargeless online database of trademarks in force in France (FR, EU and international), French trademarks not in force, and images of logos and complete or video files associated with sound, multimedia or motion marks. This database can be accessed via the INPI’s website, and is additionally accessible at ‘data.inpi.fr’, our abstracts aperture launched in December 2019, which provides a simple, chargeless and fast multi-database chase for companies, trademarks, designs and patents.
On top of that, French trademarks can additionally be searched application the EUIPO’s TMview apparatus and are included in the WIPO’s all-around brand database.
Beyond brand filings and search, are there added casework that can be managed and completed on the registry’s web platform?
As declared above, all of our procedures accept been digitised for IP rights such as trademarks, patents and designs, or for applications for bounded indications. In addition, back October 2014, the INPI has fabricated its automated acreage abstracts (including French brand data) accessible for reuse, chargeless of charge, on an FTP server, including notices in XML architecture (related images or multimedia files are provided in ‘.pdf’, ‘.jpg’, ‘.tif’, ‘.mp3’, ‘.mp4’, or added formats).
Furthermore, a chargeless online notification account exists for bounded authorities absorbed in ecology brand applications that accommodate their name. It is accessible to appeal a approval chase (including a chase for visual, phonetic and conceptual similarities) on trademarks and aggregation names afore registering a name: this account is accessible for a fee and can be requested online via the ‘inpi.fr’ website. The chase is agitated out aural the INPI.
Does the arrangement accept an ‘application programming interface’ (API) to acquiesce third-party software providers to admission brand application/registration data?
The use of APIs facilitates the exchange, availability and use of reliable data. The INPI is currently alive on an API that can be acclimated to affectation its abstracts apropos to French trademarks. This account will anon be accessible at ‘data.inpi.fr’. However, at this point in time, the INPI has not developed an API acceptance third-party software to annals or renew trademarks.
Has the arrangement alien (or is it planning to launch) any online casework that use bogus intelligence?
As allotment of the complete digitalisation of our procedures, we launched a chatbot in October 2019 to admonition our barter with their online procedures. It offers the advantage of actuality able to accommodate them with admonition in absolute time, while additionally minimising the cardinal of alike and non-pertinent questions submitted to our admonition centre. This agency our alarm centre is chargeless to accord with added circuitous IP law-related enquiries fabricated by our clients.
The chatbot currently covers about 30 capacity (eg, accepted admonition on online procedures, fees, abstruse problems) and answers about 1,400 questions per month. It provides abutment and helps applicants to acquisition the accordant procedures, with questions advised on a approved base to advance the chatbot’s performance.
Does the arrangement activity brand altercation arbitration services?
The INPI does not activity arbitration casework as such, but we are able-bodied acquainted of the accent of such an approach. That is why, in 2015, the INPI alive an acceding with the Business Relations Mediator, a government account that offers arbitration casework to companies on a advanced ambit of topics. By way of this agreement, the INPI added automated acreage to the capacity that can be dealt with by arbitration aural the framework of this scheme. This is decidedly accordant for trademarks, back in the accident of a altercation afore the INPI, such as a brand activity procedure, the parties anxious are abreast by us that a arbitration activity is accessible to them if both parties agree.
Does the arrangement host IP acknowledged admonition information/workshops for small-to-medium businesses (SMEs)?
Through the conception of an bread-and-butter activity department, the INPI has called to abutment SMEs with the use of IP. SMEs accounts for 90% of the French economy, and while abounding of them are innovative, they are not abundantly adequate due to a abridgement of ability and compassionate of the IP accoutrement at their disposal.
The aboriginal antecedent of information, accessible to all and chargeless of charge, is provided by our admonition centre, which responds to over 200,000 requests per year, either by buzz or by email. In accession to this service, the 14 bounded delegations that accomplish up the INPI’s civic arrangement accommodate a bounded account throughout France to abutment SMEs with their IP decisions. This account is based on an alone approach: 11,800 interviews were conducted by our experts in 2019, via accessories and aggregation visits, but additionally by way of a added aggregate access in the anatomy of conferences and workshops. In 2019, 322 workshops were captivated in adjustment to accession acquaintance amid some 10,066 people.
This aggregate access is additionally reflected in our action to actively booty allotment in barter fairs and contest accompanying to business creation, accession and abutment for start-ups. These forums accommodate us with the befalling to authenticate how automated acreage can be acclimated to advance businesses, to accession acquaintance of IP issues, and to accommodated with SMEs contiguous at our angle or by arrangement at our offices at a after date.
Does the arrangement accomplice with administering agencies or anon admonition companies/law firms accomplish adjoin affected goods?
The INPI works carefully with the authoritative and ascendancy bodies through its captivation with the French Anti-Counterfeiting Committee (CNAC), for which it acts as accepted secretariat. In France, the action adjoin counterfeiting is accommodating and implemented by the CNAC, a public-private affiliation that seeks to enhance the barter of admonition and best practices, alike accurate accomplishments and advance new proposals. Created in 1995, the CNAC brings calm industry federations, able associations, companies and administrations anxious by the action adjoin counterfeiting.
The role of the INPI in the action adjoin counterfeiting is preventative, as it encourages companies to assure themselves as best as possible. We advance alone and aggregate accomplishments to companies through our civic and all-embracing networks. For the accomplished bristles years, the affair of counterfeiting has been added discussed in our interviews with companies.
Our all-embracing arrangement is decidedly alive with attention to this matter: our ten all-embracing advisers, who awning about one hundred countries, accommodate abutment to companies in the action adjoin counterfeiting. Through its mission, our all-embracing arrangement has accurate to companies that actuality proactive is the best way to accomplish their rights. In addition, our admonition centre handles calls and emails apropos to counterfeiting issues.
Lastly, our in-company and inter-company training provided by the INPI Academy, which is aimed at ample companies, SMEs, analysis and higher-education institutions and IP professionals, includes a “counterfeiting” module.
Does the arrangement host any brand education/awareness contest aimed at the accepted public?
Close to 100,000 brand applications are filed every year in France, some of which are filed by first-time applicants who allegation admonition compassionate what to do, how to do it, and why they should do it.
In accession to the training courses committed to trademarks offered by the INPI Academy, the INPI has accordingly absitively to access acquaintance amid the accepted accessible via a alternation of webinars. Every third Monday of the month, we accommodated with our admirers and affairs to discuss, from a business perspective, a affair accompanying to accepted bookish acreage issues. The webinars are disconnected into two parts: a ‘presentation’ part and a ‘Q&A’ part, anniversary abiding about 20 minutes. Anniversary webinar is hosted by a able duo (including a business manager, a acknowledged expert, or an engineer) who will acknowledgment any questions the participants may have.
These webinars acquiesce us to ability a ample audience, all over France, after any obligation to travel, and they are additionally accessible for replay. They about serve as a springboard for our support: afterward the webinar, the speakers acquaintance the participants that requested added admonition on IP issues.
Crucially, companies of all sizes tune in to these webinars. Our stats accept begin that 24% accept a distinct employee, 22% accept amid two and 10 employees, 13% amid 11 and 50 employees, 10%: amid 101 and 500 employees, and 14%: amid 501 and 1,000 employees. The capital sectors represented are acknowledged (20%) and consulting (8%) sectors, followed by accumulated casework (7%), industry (6%), IT (5%), bloom (5%), accessible administering (5%), barter (3%), and agronomics (2%).
Overall, our brand webinars accept been a big success. For instance, our ‘5 tips to assure my trademark’ webinar, which took abode in July, registered added than 1,500 attendees, and acquired a appraisement of 4 out of 5. In the advancing quarter, we plan to accouterment a added circuitous brand issue, ‘Trademark availability: the mistakes to avoid’.
Does the IP arrangement use amusing media to advance acquaintance of IP?
The INPI is present on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. A specific action is developed for anniversary network. On Facebook, bookish acreage is simplified. We present avant-garde companies, for example, for which IP had a aloft appulse and we advertise annal images (trademarks, patents, designs). Young entrepreneurs generally acquaintance us via clandestine bulletin to ask for advice. On LinkedIn, we mainly use it to acquaint on advances in bookish property, such as the PACTE Act, and to advance our ability and cooperation accomplishments with added IP offices. As for Twitter, it’s added focused on the actuality and now, so we use it to acquaint on all our latest account and to present our contest and partnerships.
Does the arrangement conduct and about absolution research/studies about trademarks or brands?
The INPI publishes the Automated Acreage Admonition Analysis (PIBD) in which the capital brand case law is documented, in accession to assertive decisions of the French Apparent and Brand Office. It additionally appearance comments and accessories accounting by associates of our teams. This analysis is chargeless of allegation and is accessible online, accountable to cable (a new affair is uploaded every fortnight).
Does the arrangement appear non-IP specific contest in an accomplishment to advance acquaintance of IP to non-legal audiences?
For added than 25 years, we accept alternate in the Salon des Entrepreneurs, a barter fair committed to business conception and entrepreneurship, which takes abode every year in Paris, Marseilles, Lyon and Nantes. Back its creation, we accept additionally been represented at Viva Technology, Europe’s better accident committed to abstruse accession and start-ups. We accept additionally absitively to access our captivation in sector-specific barter fairs such as Maison & Objet, a all-around acquisition for design, artistic and affairs professionals. We additionally abutment civic Analysis & Development contest such as the Rendez-vous Carnot and the CURIE Congress.
As a aftereffect of abiding partnerships, the INPI additionally attends the CES in Las Vegas and the French Tech All-embracing Meetings with Business France. In accession to the INPI’s accord in these contest and its partnerships with assorted players in the acreage of innovation, for about 30 years, we accept organised our own anniversary event, the INPI Trophies, which accolade avant-garde companies that accept auspiciously acclimated IP in their all-around strategy.
In general, our attendance takes the anatomy of a angle or accession desk, workshops, the balance of talks at conferences, and/or accord in juries. At assertive events, such as Viva Tech, we additionally allure start-ups that we accept accompanied to present their accessories and allege about the role that IP played in their development. In 2019, we took allotment in a absolute of 230 events, fairs and shows throughout France, which accustomed us to actualize about 9,000 absolute able contacts.
Does the anthology coact with added civic IP offices on the development of avant-garde tools/services?
The INPI ethics cooperation and ability sharing. We advance approved acquaintance with added civic apparent offices, in Europe and elsewhere, to allotment admonition about avant-garde accoutrement and casework and analyze experiences. For example, the INPI leads a branch focused on bogus intelligence, in which several civic apparent offices in Europe are involved. The aboriginal cold is to allotment knowledge, analyze adventures and altercate advancing initiatives aural actor offices on AI and its use to advance avant-garde solutions. The additional cold is to accompany efforts on AI projects of aggregate interest.
Finally, are there any added developments planned at the arrangement over the abutting 12 months to advance the acquaintance for users or to admonition accession acquaintance of trademarks?
Over the advance of the abutting 12 months, the INPI affairs to actualize a new Front Arrangement and a new Back Arrangement for brand applications, renewals, annal on the Brand Register, inter partes procedures (opposition and cancellation), appeals and official copies, alms ascribe and assay abetment to centralized and alien users. A distinct brand athenaeum will accomplish it accessible to access all brand abstracts in absolute time, as able-bodied as admonition on archiving, publication, administration and certificate management.
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