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James E. Hurson

August 22, 2006

BY EMAIL

Commissioner for Trademarks
P.O. Box 1451 Alexandria, VA 22313-1451
Att: Mary Hannon

RE: Request for Comments on Removal of Paper Search Collection of Marks That Include Design Elements, FR Doc. Vol. 71, No. 121 page 36065

Dear Ms. Hannon:

The USPTO is proposing to eliminate the supplemental paper search collection of design trademark registrations from the public search facilities and replace them with a sole electronic collection. We believe that the electronic collections have not achieved a state of accuracy or reliability, and the removal of the paper records will have a negative impact on the public.

Further, numerous prior public comments on the proposed removal of those records have as yet not been addressed and the electronic systems still suffer an error rate in excess of 10% among issued registrations. Although the plan notes the implementation of another layer of design coding, it should be noted that it will not be applied to the historic/ back file data, thus will not address the historic error rate that impacts in excess of 50% of the design coded registrations.

Lastly, the USPTO asserts that non U.S. registration data such as the Paris Convention marks or tribal insignia can be searched and retrieved in the electronic systems. Prior studies indicate that a substantial percentage of that data can not be located in either X-Search or TESS.

The USPTO has not proven that the electronic systems have achieved an acceptable state of accuracy or reliability, and the plan to eliminate the paper search collection is premature.

Very truly yours,

James E. Hurson
President

United States Patent and Trademark Office
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