First-time filer? Confused by trademark application terms? Interested in saving time and money during the application process? For your convenience, the USPTO presents TMIN, the Trademark Information Network. Here you can view news broadcast-style videos that cover important topics and critical application filing tips.
If you’re interested in learning more trademark fundamentals before starting the application process, be sure to watch the TMIN presentation: Basic Facts About Trademarks: What Every Small Business Should Know Now, Not Later.
While these videos provide pertinent suggestions and legal information, they are not considered legal advice. For legal advice, please consider contacting a private attorney who specializes in intellectual property.
The play buttons below connect you to the videos on the USPTO YouTube channel.
ACCESSIBILITY NOTE: For those viewers requiring closed captioning and audio descriptions, please use the "Enhanced Accessibility Versions" of the videos linked below.
NOTA: Si prefiere ver la versión de estos videos subtitulada en español, visite la Página de Recursos en Español para Registrantes de Marcas. Note por favor, que estos materiales se le proveen de cortesía y que todas las formas y comunicación de la Oficina serán en inglés.
Questions or comments about any of the videos? Please contact TMIN@uspto.gov. Note that this address should only be used for specific questions and comments about the materials covered in the videos, not for general questions. For general questions, please contact TrademarkAssistanceCenter@uspto.gov.
This video outlines the differences between trademarks, patents, and copyrights, and introduces the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and its Trademark Information Network (TMIN) series. It provides information about the federal trademark registration process, as well as highlights the rights and protection you gain by federally registering your trademark. [run time: 11:03]
TMIN News 01: USPTO and trademark basics
This video provides an overview of the most important issues you should be aware of when filing a trademark application. It covers such topics as trademark availability searching, ownership information, differences between drawings and specimens, identifications of goods and services, and filing bases. WARNING: Failure to understand these topics can create major deficiencies in your application or result in an application that is void from the start. [run time: 10:41]
TMIN News 02: Before you file
This video focuses on the importance of conducting a search of existing trademarks before filing your trademark application. It provides a brief overview of (1) the concept of "likelihood of confusion;" (2) the effect of being the first to file; and (3) the USPTO's Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS). WARNING: It is critical that you conduct a search for conflicting marks before you file, as the existence of a mark that is confusingly similar to yours and used with related goods and/or services may bar registration of your mark. [run time: 13:10]
TMIN News 03: Searching
This video focuses on what is meant by the term "applicant." Failure to understand this concept and a failure to identify the "applicant" correctly in the application may result in a void application. [run time: 3:45]
TMIN: Applicant Information
Resources referenced in the video:
This video focuses on what is meant by the term "drawing." Because you may amend your mark "drawing" only in rare circumstances during the application process, it is critical that you understand this concept before filing. [run time: 3:54]
Resources referenced in the video:
This video focuses on what is meant by the phrase "identification of goods and services." Failure to identify your goods and/or services correctly may result in major delays in the prosecution of your application. In some cases, an incorrect identification may prevent registration of your mark. [run time: 06:31]
TMIN: Goods and Services
This video focuses on what is meant by the term "basis." It also provides specifics about the filing requirements for both Section 1(a), Use-in-Commerce, and Section 1(b), Intent-to-Use-in-Commerce, filing bases. Selecting the correct basis is important, as an incorrect basis can result in delays or require the payment of otherwise unnecessary fees. [run time: 4:08]
Resources referenced in the video:
This video focuses on what is meant by the term "specimen." It provides examples of acceptable specimens and highlights the differences between a "drawing" and a "specimen." As the "specimen" issue is commonly misunderstood by both initial applicants and registrants making post-registration submissions, watching this video should help you avoid mistakes. [run time: 3:01]
This video provides an overview of the most important issues you should be aware of after filing your application. It covers such topics as using the USPTO's electronic resources to keep your application current, who to contact with questions, and what you must do to avoid abandonment. [run time: 7:45]
TMIN News 09: After you file
This video introduces the "Statement of Use" and explains when the document is required for registration of a trademark. The video also highlights related forms, documents, and concepts that may be necessary to submit the Statement of Use. WARNING: If you filed your application under a Section 1(b), Intent-to-Use, basis and fail to timely file a Statement of Use, your application will be ineligible for registration. [run time: 8:54]
TMIN: Statement of Use
Resources referenced in the video:
This video explains when you may file a "Petition to Revive" to bring an unintentionally abandoned application back to life. The video also discusses how to file the petition and what to include. WARNING: The failure to timely file the petition will result in the permanent abandonment of your application. [run time: 10:09]
This video provides an overview of the most important issues you should be aware of after your application has matured into a registration. The video explains the required maintenance documents that you must file to keep your registration alive, as well as discusses an optional filing to enhance the legal strength of your registration. WARNING: Failure to file the required maintenance documents discussed in this video can result in the cancellation of your registration. [run time: 13:39]
TMIN: Post-Registration Issues
This video provides an overview of the three main types of Trademark Trial and Appeal Board ("TTAB" or "Board") proceedings a trademark owner may encounter: Appeals, Oppositions, and Cancellations. The video also suggests how to retain legal counsel to assist you during a TTAB proceeding. This assistance is important, as losing your case before the Board may result in the abandonment of your application or the cancellation of your registration. If you are a foreign-domiciled applicant, registrant, or party, you must have a U.S.-licensed attorney represent you before the Board. [run time: 6:43]
TMIN News 13: TTAB
14. VIDEO: "Response to office action"
This video provides an overview of the most common type of USPTO office action: a non-final office action issued by a USPTO examining attorney. In the video, you will learn how to respond to an office action, as well as ensure that you receive all communications from the office. Be aware that a failure to timely respond to an office action will result in the abandonment of your application. Specifically, the application process will end and the trademark will not register; filing fees are NOT refunded when applications abandon. [run time: 8:42]
TMIN News 14: Response to office action
15. VIDEO: "Assignments and ownership changes
This video provides an overview of three of the most common types of assignments and ownership changes: (1) change in entity name; (2) change in entity type; and (3) assignment of the trademark from one party to another. In this video, you will learn what these changes are, how to record them with the USPTO, and why it’s so important to keep your ownership information up-to-date. WARNING: A failure to properly record your ownership information may result in an inability to use and protect your trademark. [run time: 08:19]
TMIN: Assignments and Ownership Changes
16. VIDEO: "Solicitation alert"
This video highlights the potential harm to you posed by non-USPTO solicitations. Specifically, private companies, not affiliated with the USPTO, are using your trademark application and registration information to send you official looking solicitations. This video explains what these various types of solicitations are, how to identify them, and what to do if you think that you’ve been scammed. Be aware that the USPTO is not sending you these solicitations and you are not required to respond to them. [run time: 08:09]
TMIN News 16: Solicitation alert
This video covers the three main issues that bands and musical artists encounter when applying for a federal trademark registration: (1) identifying the proper applicant, (2) selecting accurate goods and services, and (3) submitting an acceptable specimen. If you fail to comply with these requirements, your application may be refused and you will have wasted valuable time and money. [run time: 10:18]
TMIN News 17: Rockin’ the Trademark
This video introduces the concept of “ornamentation” and the “ornamental” refusal. If you submit evidence that shows you only use your mark in an ornamental or decorative manner on your goods, the Office will refuse to register your mark. Learn how to overcome this refusal or avoid it altogether. [run time: 6:08]
TMIN News 18: Ornamental
19. VIDEO: "Fees"
This video gives an overview of the most common filing fees required to apply for and maintain a federal trademark registration. Your initial fee depends on (1) your application filing form, (2) your filing basis, and (3) the number of international classes in your application. Watch this video to understand how your fee is calculated and how you might save hundreds of dollars when filing. [run time: 11:03]
TMIN News 19: Fees
20. VIDEO: "Counterfeit"
This video highlights the pervasive harm caused by counterfeit goods. Counterfeiting reaches into all aspects of our daily lives, threatens our health and safety, and negatively impacts U.S. jobs and the overall economy. The video also includes practical tips on how to spot counterfeit goods and avoid buying them. [run time: 6:52]