From time to time people want to trade on the popularity of
certain names. In this case, Businessinvestgroup, a Russian
company, filed a word trade mark application (number
ПОЛЕ (Prokhorovka Battlefield) in
respect of alcoholic beverages, class 33. The Patent Office
refused the registration.
The rejection was based on the consideration that the
claimed designation is the name of the state military museum
Prokhorovka Battlefield, which includes a belfry tower
symbolising the victory and is also part of the memorial
complex Prokhorovka Battlefield situated about 1.5 miles from
Prokhorovka village commemorating the memory of the greatest
tank battle in the summer of 1943 during the World War II. This
complex is an object of cultural heritage (number 3100001227).
The monument itself was unveiled on the occasion of the 50th
victory anniversary of World War II in 1995.
Because of that, argued the Patent
Office, the claimed designation cannot be registered as a trade
mark in the name of the applicant for goods in class 33 as it
contradicts the public interest.
The decision of the Patent Office was appealed at the
Chamber of Patent Disputes but the Chamber supported the
findings of the examiner.The Chamber also pointed out that
granting a monopoly to a non-government entity for the use of a
designation being an object of cultural heritage in respect of
class 33 would give groundless advantages to the applicant
giving him the right to derive profit on the basis of the
reputation earned by that cultural object.
The Chamber of Patent Disputes missed a point though,
because aside from these considerations, creating an
association between the bloodiest battle in history and
consumption of alcoholic drinks which in itself is usually
associated with merrymaking creates a cynical contrast. This
perhaps should have been the main reason for rejection of the
claimed designation. This consideration extends far beyond
intellectual property and concerns more respect to the nation's
history and morals of the people.
Gorodissky & Partners
Russia 129010, Moscow
B. Spasskaya Str
25, stroenie 3
Tel: +7 495 937 6116 / 6109
Fax: +7 495 937 6104 / 6123