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UK seeks comments on design marking

James Nurton, London

The UK government has launched a consultation on enabling designers to mark their products with a web link, rather than having to attach the registered design numbers to the product.

Baroness Neville-RolfeThe link would go to a website with up-to-date details of the registered rights. The proposal is an extension of the system that was introduced for patent marking by the Intellectual Property Act 2014, and follows similar legislation in the United States.

The proposal was announced by IP Minister Baroness Neville-Rolfe during a visit to Dyson’s headquarters. She said: “We are confident that virtual marking for registered designs will be very warmly welcomed by UK companies for whom design is key to their success.” Sir James Dyson, founder of Dyson, added: “Virtual marking will propel intellectual property into the digital age. Next, we need to uphold a culture where inventors resolutely protect their ideas and where the ideas of others are firmly respected.”

The call for evidence is available online. The consultation is expected to close next month. It is possible that legislation could be included in the Enterprise Bill, which is due to be discussed in Parliament in the autumn.


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