The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) concluded its 47th meeting in Durban, South Africa, last week. Sessions opened with a ceremonial signing of registry agreements and closed with an energized and lively debate during the public forum.
One session offered a progress report on the Trademark Clearinghouse (TMCH) and confirmed that so far:
- 5,900 total records have been submitted across more than 60 jurisdictions
- 150 trademarks have been submitted in non-Latin scripts
- 800 trademark holders have submitted registrations
- 50% of corrections were due to errors on Proof-of-Use specimens
Representatives from both ICANN and the TMCH also provided a draft preview of details surrounding the process and requirements for the so-called “TMCH +50” program. This additional facet of ICANN’s rights protection mechanisms (RPMs) provides trademark claims protection for domain name ‘labels’ previously found to have been abusively used or registered, as described in the March 20, 2013, Memorandum on the Trademark Clearinghouse “Strawman Solution.”
Under the +50 service, trademark owners can add a certain number of domain labels, based on Uniform Dispute Resolution Procedure (UDRP) or court decisions, to a verified trademark record. Up to 50 domain name labels included in decisions can be added to an existing TMCH record.
Although +50 is a welcome addition to the RPMs introduced as part of the New gTLD program, there are several considerations for brand and trademark owners. For example, domain name labels added under this service only qualify for trademark claims notifications, not Sunrise registration services. In addition, as stated in the implementation notes published by ICANN on July 16, the prerequisites and qualifications include a detailed comparison of the TMCH record details with the trademark information that was provided by the complainant in the UDRP or court proceeding. Lastly, trademark owners can expect additional costs when filing a UDRP or court proceeding with the TMCH for this purpose.
This information was prepared by CSC Digital Brand Services, an official agent of the Trademark Clearinghouse. For more information about the benefits of choosing an agent or conducting your own registrations, please review our TMCH infographic.
You can find additional resources on the TMCH in the latest edition of our newsletter, The Brand Bulletin, in “The Truth About the Trademark Clearinghouse,” a CSC Digital Brand Services webinar recording, and in our “Decision Points” strategy sheet. Feel free to contact us with your questions.