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Thursday Oct 20, 2011

Fourth Quarter Trademarks Dashboard Overview

Guest blog by Commissioner for Trademarks Debbie Cohn
The USPTO first introduced the Trademarks Dashboard this past year with quarterly updates to trademark metrics. This month, we are pleased to announce that for the fiscal year that ended September 30, 2011, trademark pendency, quality, electronic processing, and efficiency have met or exceeded performance targets. Performance results this year are all the more impressive considering that new application filings increased by 8.1 percent to 398,667 classes, which was slightly more than 4 percent above plan.
Trademark pendency continues to be maintained at historically low levels as measured by the time from filing to first action, and, at disposal or total pendency, the average time from filing to registration, notice of allowance or abandonment of the application. First action pendency ended the fiscal year at 3.1 months. Disposal pendency reflects low first action pendency and lower overall time to registration or notice of allowance, as more applications are filed and processed electronically – 10.5 months on average, and 12.6 months on average when including applications that were either suspended or involved in inter partes. 
Trademark quality is considered a critical measure and one we seek to continuously improve upon. The new “excellent office action” measure adds rigorous criteria regarding quality of an examiner's writing, evidence, and search strategy – setting a high standard defined as “excellence.” First year results surpassed the baseline target by nearly 7 percentage points – exceeding our initial expectations! The current first and final action compliance measures each delivered quality results above 96 percent. The evaluation of quality results are used for improving and developing policy and training guides and manuals.
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