The Department of Commerce's United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has reached a major milestone in maximizing electronic tools to make the trademark registration process fully transparent to the public. For the first time, anyone with Internet access anywhere in the world can use USPTO's Web site ( www.uspto.gov ) to review documents in the official trademark application file, including all decisions made by trademark examining attorneys and their reasons for making them.
The system, known as Trademark Document Retrieval (TDR), offers the public an advanced electronic portal to PDF viewing, downloading and printing of an array of information and documents for more than 460,000 trademark applications totaling more than eight million document pages. As new applications are filed, they will be added to the database. It is expected that more than 300,000 application files will be added annually. Over the next five years, the remaining paper files of approximately 1.2 million active trademark registrations will be converted into digital format for TDR access.
"Trademarks help consumers distinguish among products and services and are often an organization's most valuable asset," noted Jon Dudas, Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO. "The TDR system improves our ability to provide timely and useful information to business owners as they develop their marks and prepare to file trademark applications."
The TDR system builds on the USPTO's First Action System for Trademarks (FAST), which replaced paper files and is now used by all trademark examining attorneys to review applications.
All federally registered and pending trademarks are available to the public on the USPTO's Web site ( www.uspto.gov ), where status information is also available. The trademark data includes nearly 2 million pending and registered trademarks dating back to 1885 and represents more than 100 years of marketing creativity.
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