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Monday Sep 25, 2023

What to expect from our new trademark search system (and why we’re replacing TESS)

Guest blog by Dave Gooder, Commissioners for Trademarks

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The Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS) has been a fixture of the USPTO’s information technology portfolio for decades. Those of us in the trademark community have grown accustomed to it, and perhaps even grown fond of it over the years. Maybe you have field tags and design search codes memorized, and you can formulate complex search strings to pull up the exact mark you’re looking for in a snap.

Although TESS has served us well, its long tenure is ending in November. The Bibliographic Retrieval System that has underpinned our internal and external search systems since 1993 is now outdated. On the bright side, we now have an opportunity to provide a more stable, modern search experience that can grow and adapt to the ever-evolving needs of the trademark community.

Our new search system recently launched in beta and we need your help to further its development. Our priority now, especially in the beta phase, is listening to your perspective on what works and what doesn’t, in order to optimize your search experience. To this end, I encourage you to use, learn, and express your feedback and suggestions on the new search. Your feedback will guide how we prioritize and develop updates beginning in 2024 and continuing for the life of the search system.

We understand that acclimating to a new interface and search syntax takes time and look forward to holding several virtual events to help you get familiar with the new system:

·         Demo of the new trademark search system, September 26, 11 a.m. to noon ET

·         Demo of the new trademark search system, September 28, 3-4 p.m. ET

·         Federal trademark searching: Basics, October 2, 2-3:30 p.m. ET

·         Federal trademark searching: advanced techniques, October 16, 2-3:30 p.m. ET

Thank you for the valuable feedback you’ve provided thus far, and please keep it coming. As we strive to transform your search experience for the better and to strengthen our IT infrastructure, we’re grateful for your support and engagement.  


I think most trademark attorneys can understand that the PTO might need to replace TESS, but we're uncomfortable with the extremely short time period you're allowing the beta testing. We've already uncovered quite a few differences between TESS and the new system and problems with features that have been lost. You should give serious consideration to pushing back the destruction of TESS to at least the beginning of next year.

Posted by Richard Schafer on September 25, 2023 at 04:07 PM EDT #

TESS is today still working very well. A month or two seems rather short to completely change decades of search procedures. How about keeping TESS alive for somewhat longer while you're breaking in the new system.

Posted by Nat Kramer on September 26, 2023 at 12:12 PM EDT #

Thanks for this info.

Posted by Glenn Dwyer on September 28, 2023 at 12:59 PM EDT #

Will the demos be recorded so that those that cannot attend the scheduled times can view them later?

Posted by Angela on September 28, 2023 at 02:38 PM EDT #

Where can we view the early training sessions on the new system if we missed the first showing?

Posted by Rebecca J Brandau on October 09, 2023 at 11:58 AM EDT #

I agree with my colleagues who have expressed in the comments that a few months to switch from TESS to the new search system is not adequate time to assess and address the number of issues identified with the Beta version.

Posted by Sunisha Choksi on October 10, 2023 at 06:12 AM EDT #

If we missed a training, will these be available somewhere else?

Posted by Sydney Nguyen on October 10, 2023 at 05:23 PM EDT #

This information proves to be valuable and insightful, offering a comprehensive understanding of the topic. It has significantly enriched my knowledge by providing a wealth of information on the subject.

Posted by sonika singh on November 10, 2023 at 06:08 AM EST #

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