Continuing our recent initiative in response to feedback from practitioners and other stakeholders expressing a desire to provide constructive input on examination guides before they are finalized, a draft version of an examination guide on geographic certification marks is being made available now for comment.
The purpose of the examination guide, entitled "Geographic Certification Marks," is to provide additional guidance to examiners and practitioners in this area, as well as provide examples illustrating the concepts discussed.
You can submit comments on the examination guide using a web-based collaboration tool, which some of you may have already used to comment on the TMEP or other guides. The tool allows users to post comments on a topic, and view and respond to others' comments. In addition, users may vote to indicate agreement or disagreement with a particular comment. We will use the collaboration webpage to address comments and will take all timely comments into account before issuing a final version of the guide.
Please submit all comments on the examination guide via the online collaboration tool by July 31, 2013.
Instructions for Accessing the Webpage Specimens Draft Examination Guide Collaboration Website
The draft of the "Geographic Certification Marks" examination guide can be accessed at http://www.uspto.gov/trademarks/notices/GeoCertExamGuide_-_26_JUNE_2013_-_External_Distribution.doc. This copy of the guide contains hyperlinks in each section, taking you to the website where you can post comments about the guide.
To post comments, you must be registered with, and logged on to, the IdeaScale® collaboration website. To register, click on the "Register" link in the upper-right corner of the webpage. You will then be prompted to provide an email address, solve a basic math problem (for spam bot prevention), and agree to the terms of service. Shortly after completing the registration page, you will receive an email verifying your account and allowing you to create a password. Once you have created a password, you can access the website.
On the website, you will see a menu on the left side of the screen showing the heading "Geographic Certification Marks." Click on the plus symbol next to this heading to expand the menu and display the various sections of the examination guide (e.g., Part I, Part IIA, PartIIB, etc.).
To submit a new comment on a particular section, click on the "Submit New Idea" button above the menu and ensure that the correct section of the guide is selected in the drop-down menu under "Campaign." To submit a general comment about the examination guide, select "General Comments" in the drop-down menu. If you click on one of the IdeaScale® hyperlinks in the draft of the examination guide, the appropriate section of the guide will be pre-selected in the drop-down menu.
Please direct questions regarding accessing and using the IdeaScale® website to TMPolicy@uspto.gov.
TMEP IdeaScale® Website Also Available
As a reminder, please use IdeaScale® website at http://uspto-tmep.ideascale.com/ to submit comments and suggestions related to selected sections and chapters of the Trademark Manual of Examining Procedure (TMEP).