Answer ... A ‘mark’ is defined in the Trade Mark Act as “any sign which can be represented graphically and is capable of distinguishing the goods or services of one undertaking from that of another”. This is a broad definition, which includes any sign which can be ‘represented graphically’. Although currently only traditional marks have been registered, it is possible for a sound, smell, touch or other non-traditional mark to be registered if it can be represented graphically.
The Trademark Register is further divided into four parts, as follows:
- Part A: distinctive marks;
- Part B: marks which are deemed capable of distinguishing goods and services;
- Part C: certification marks; and
- Part D: defensive marks.
There is also a provision for the registration of collective marks.
Answer ... The mark must be innovative and distinctive or capable of distinguishing goods and services, and cannot be descriptive or deceptive.
Answer ... Any ‘sign’ – including words, designs, logos and letters which form a pronounceable word – as long as it can be represented graphically. Several types of marks are eligible for registration under the Trade Mark Act. However, designations or other identifiers which are against public policy or deceptive are ineligible to function as trademarks. Likewise, numbers or letters of the alphabet which do not form a pronounceable word or other words which are usually used by the public are prima facie not registrable.