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Our Special Event
Thank you all who attended our big event held on November 8, 2019 before APAA conference in Taipei.
Our initial goal is to let all guests feel great about what they were taking part of. Moreover, we even want to give a part of people who couldn't attend a sense of what it was like to be there.
We would rather make the warm reunion more than a knees-up only, so I personally looked into every detail during all discussions for the reception throughout a whole year in 2019. We learned that everyone feels like winding down in the reception so it is a challenge to have all guests to leave an unforgettable impression even after the lights have been turned off. After we put a lot of time and effort into throwing a reception that lasts a matter of hours, we did make it since we can tell through the wonderful responses we received from many of our guests afterwards. 
It's very meaningful for us to take that chance to have expressed our appreciation to those who have been supporting our firm for years. Frankly speaking, when we saw many friends' names in the RSVP list of our reception at the very beginning, there were indeed no words to express our grateful feelings. We just want all of you to know that we attach importance to everything from a reception to a case.
We hope that there will be a chance again in the future to extend our warm hospitality to people who failed to attend our reception this time.

Responses for our reception
“Your reception definitely was the best and we very much regretted that we had to leave!”
“Your reception was memorable for food, different activities proposed all very funny, gifts, nice photos and ... your courtesy!!”
“Once again I want to congratulate you for the extraordinary organization of your reception and for being the first one you can be sure that it was a great success.”
“First, let me congratulate you on your reception, which I am sure was a resounding success. We could see how much thought, care and hard work had been put into it. You deserve a rest!”
“We could tell that a lot of thought and planning had gone into the evening, and although we didn’t win the “King” and “Queen” prizes, we had great fun participating in the cultural activities.”
“I was one of the first and last guests and had enough time to enjoy the beautiful location, the food and the conversation with other colleagues and the people from your firm. Thank you for everything.”

Analysis Report of AI-related Patent Applications in Taiwan (1)
Artificial Intelligence (AI) has undergone decades of development. Recently, the so-called “third wave of AI” centered on deep learning is built on powerful hardware computing capabilities and enables AI to surpass human intelligence in logical judgment in some aspects by huge amounts of data collected through the popularity of high-speed networks. AI-related technologies have been widely applied to various fields which fundamentally change the way we work, communicate, learn and entertain.
TIPO recently published a report analyzing the AI-related patent applications in Taiwan, which provides an overview of the trends of applications, including the AI techniques, the functional applications, and the application fields. This report also analyzes the issues that the AI-related patent applications may encounter in the examination and provides the suggested solutions. 
We will provide a short summary of this report in our newsletter. In this article, we will briefly introduce the trends of AI-related patent applications in Taiwan. 
Overview of trends of applications
According to the analysis report of WIPO, the international trend of the worldwide AI-related patent applications shows a rapid growth of deep learning and neural network technologies in terms of the AI techniques. As to the functional applications, AI techniques are mainly used for the powerful capabilities in computer vision, speech processing, and natural language processing. As to the application fields, AI techniques are mostly applied to the fields of telecommunication, transportation, security, and life and medical sciences.
There were 1,567 AI-related patent applications in Taiwan in 2018. In terms of AI techniques, applications mostly focus on neural networks (deep learning) and neural networks are used as the core of application (31%, 487 applications). However, there are still more than half of the applications which are not directly related to neural networks. Compared with the international trends, there are a particularly high number of hardware applications that support neural networks, as high as 173 (11%), which should be related to the industrial characteristics of Taiwan.
With respect to the application fields, 279 applications (24%) are in the field of “Industry and Manufacturing”, far ahead of other fields and also a much higher percentage than in the international trend. In addition, the percentage of "energy management" (60 applications, 5%) in Taiwan is also higher than in the international trends. In contrast, the percentage of "transportation" and "telecommunications" is much lower in Taiwan than in the international trends.
As to the functional applications, "Computer Vision" is the most popular AI function in Taiwan, which is in line with international trends. More special is that the function of "predictive analysis" is quite prominently used in Taiwan, which should be influenced by the AI applications in the field of "Industry and Manufacturing". In the field of "Industry and Manufacturing", AI is used to collect a large number of process parameters for analysis and then the analysis results is used as the basis for the control of machines. The number of applications also affects the number of back-end "control methods" applications. 
Analyzing according to the nationality of the applicants, the largest number is 704 (45%) of Taiwanese applicants, followed by 284 (18%) of mainland China plus Hong Kong, then by 271 (17%) of the United States and 128 (8%) of Japan, and then is 57 (4%) of South Korea.
There are a large number of applicants, a total of 521 applicants in 1,567 applications, in which only 12 applicants have more than 20 applications. Although the number of applications by Taiwanese applicants stands at 45%, only 4 applicants have entered the top 12, which shows that the applications are widely distributed by different applicants, and most are filed by SME in a small amount. 
In terms of applicant types, 80% of the applicants are companies, 15% are schools or research institutions, and 5% are individuals. As many as 41% of individuals' applications are not related to machine learning. Schools or research institutions focus on the development of various applications of neural networks, especially in the field of life and medical science. Companies slightly more focus on hardware inventions which are mainly in the field of industry and manufacturing.

Draft Amendments of Trademark Act  
As we informed you in our Newsletter of December 2018, TIPO has invited experts and scholars to several seminars for studying over some issues under the themes “Trademark examination” and “Trademark Protection” on whether and how to proceed with the amendments to the Trademark Act, the Enforcement Rules of the Trademark Act and/or the Examination Guidelines. Now, after intensive discussions, draft amendments to the Trademark Act are made. Here is a brief introduction to the issues indicated in the draft amendments. We will introduce the detailed amendments to each Article to be amended/deleted/added in the Trademark Act in our future newsletters when the amendments are publicly announced. 
Among all articles which will be amended, one article is listed as a priority. In the United States, the European Union or Japan, applicants can request for Accelerated Examination for a trademark application if the legal requirements are satisfied. Although since 2018, it takes only about 5 months for receiving the first Official Notice and 6.7 months for receiving the result of the examination (Notice of Allowance) for the trademark filings in Taiwan, TIPO still kept receiving lots of requests about the need of an Accelerated Examination mechanism. Thus, in the draft amendments, regulations for requesting Accelerated Examination for the trademark applications are added.
In total, 14 articles will be amended and two new articles will be added. We conclude the main points of the draft amendments to the Trademark Act as follows:
Regulations for the request of Accelerated Examination for trademark applications will be introduced. 
  In case the applicant deems that they need to acquire the trademark right immediately (for example, the products will be launched to the market soon), TIPO requires to have the corresponding regulations for accepting such requests. Therefore, with reference to the regulations of AEP of invention patent, in the draft amendments, TIPO adds corresponding regulations for Accelerated Examination to fulfill the demands of the markets and the trademark applicants.
The entities that are qualified as trademark applicants will be clearly defined.
  To clearly define the entities that may have no legal capacities but still can be qualified as  trademark applicants, the draft amendment adds a paragraph to specify that an applicant (for a trademark application) means natural persons, legal persons, partnerships, administrative agencies, unincorporated groups established under the law or business registered under the Business Registration Law who wish to run business with the designated goods and/or services.
3. Regulations for the certified copy of the priority document will be relaxed.
In the original Paragraph 4 of Article 20, Trademark Act, it states as follows: “The applicant shall submit, within three months from the day following the date of filing of the application, a copy of the application certified as admitted by the country or the member of the WTO referred to in the preceding paragraph.”
In the practice, trademark applications can be registered in less than 6 months in some countries. When filing a trademark application in Taiwan and claiming the priority of a corresponding foreign trademark application, the corresponding foreign trademark may already be registered in the foreign country. Thus, in the draft amendment, TIPO deletes the wording of “application” so that the certified document shall not be limited to the filing document when filing the trademark with priority claim in Taiwan.
4. The range of trademark right for the part of the trademark which obtains the acquired distinctiveness (the secondary meaning) or has functionality will be clarified.
The original Paragraph 3 of Article 29, Trademark Act states: "Where the reproduction of a trademark contains an element which is not distinctive, and where the inclusion of that element in the trademark could give rise of doubt as to the scope of the trademark rights, the applicant shall state that he/she disclaims any exclusive right to such element. Such a trademark without a disclaimer shall not be registered.”
In the proposed draft amendment, the following description will be added for clarification: "However, in case the said element acquires distinctiveness after use, such trademark can be registered without a disclaimer.
As to the functional part in the trademark, the following description will be added in Paragraph 4 of Article 30: “Functional part in the trademark should be indicated with dotted lines. In case the functional part of the trademark cannot be indicated with the dotted lines (such as sound or odor), it is required to claim that the functional part forms no part of the trademark for the registration.”
5. The meaning of “trademark fair use” will be further defined.
  Regarding the term “trademark fair use”, it includes “descriptive fair use” and “indicative fair use”. “Descriptive fair use” means that the using of the mark is not to indicate the source of goods or services, but merely to describe its own goods or services, which will not be regarded as trademark use. . “Indicative fair use” means that a third person uses the trademark of another registrant to indicate the goods or services of the trademark registrant, and the third person does not use the trademark registrant’s trademark as his own trademark. The two types of fair use are different in nature. The current article defines the “descriptive fair use” only, so the draft amendment will add a new paragraph regarding “indicative fair use”.
6. Regulations related to invalidation will be relaxed.
  If the registration of a trademark infringes the copyright, patent or other rights of another person, after the judicial decision is made, the registration of the trademark obtained based on the infringement will lose its legality. Thus, the draft amendment adds a new regulation that the interested party can file an invalidation action on the ground of the said judicial decision. And, the 5-year time limitation for filing an invalidation action will not be applied under such a circumstance. 
7. New regulations related to invalidation on the ground of recoverable legal interests will be added.
  Referring to Article 72 of Patent Act, a new Article with a similar effect will be added in the draft amendment regarding invalidation on the ground of recoverable legal interests. Article 72 of Patent Act states: “Where the interested party possesses recoverable legal interests due to the revocation of a patent, such interested party may file an invalidation action after the said patent has become extinguished ipso facto.
8. Regulations for filing a request for revocation will be relaxed. 
  Under the currenet regulation, a request for revocation may be dismissed directly if it is devoid of any concrete facts and evidence or based on obviously groundless claims.  The draft amendment deletes the aforesaid subparagraph.  In accordance with judicial practice, to apply for the revocation against the registration of another person's trademark, it is sufficient for the applicant of revocation to provide fair evidence to explain and establish the truth of his/her allegation. If the examiner in charge deems necessary, he/she shall notify the applicant of revocation to supplement or correct the revocation application in advance instead of dismissing it directly.

※ Differences Between “NICE Classification” and “the Practice of TIPO” in Class 09
TIPO generally follows NICE classification of the designated goods and services. However, some descriptions of the designated goods and services in NICE classification are not acceptable in Taiwan because some of them are not definite enough under the present practice in Taiwan. We will continuously provide the list of descriptions in NICE classification which are not acceptable along with our suggestions of how to amend these descriptions in accordance with the regulation in Taiwan. 
In this issue, we provide the list of some examples in Class 09 as below for your reference.
Nice (Indication of Goods) Our suggestions
    Class 09
apparatus and instruments for astronomy Please be informed that this item is not acceptable under the practice in Taiwan. The item should be amended into the standard description “Cosmographic instruments”. Moreover, it can be also specified into “telescope; Stargazing instrument; satellite finder meters”.
computer peripheral devices Please be informed this item is too broad to be accepted under the practice in Taiwan. If the item needs to be kept in class 9, it should be specified into concrete ones, such as “Magnetic tapes; Diskette; Floppy disk; Magnetic wires; Optical discs; Card reader; Plotter; Scanners; Electronic book; Personal digital assistant; Mouse pads; USB Flash Drive; Carry bag for notebook computer; etc”.
diagnostic apparatus, not for medical purposes Please be informed these items are too broad to be accepted under the practice in Taiwan. If the items needs to be kept in class 9, they should be specified into concrete ones, such as “Altimeter; Micrometer gauges; Length gauge; Range finders; arine direction finder; Temperature indicators; Calorie calculator; Oil thermometer; Manometers; Anemoscope; Manometer; Hardness gauge; Ammeter; Resistance gauge; Galvanometers; Analysis Spectrometer; Light meter; Water gauge; Graduated cylinder; Measuring cup; Flask; Precision measuring apparatus; Thermometers, not for medical purposes; Electronic torque tester; Automatic optical detector; Urinometers; Lactometers; Temperature indicator labels, not for medical purposes; Calorimeters; Capillary tubes; Indoor luminosity tester; etc.”
measuring apparatus
measuring instruments
mirrors [optics]
optical apparatus and instruments
surveying instruments
surveying apparatus and instruments
teaching apparatus
testing apparatus not for medical purposes
diagnostic apparatus, not for medical purposes



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