China News Service, December 12th. According to the Supreme Court’s official WeChat news, recently, the protection of the rights of geographical indications such as "Tongguan Roujiamo" has attracted great attention from the society. The person in charge of the Third Civil Division of the Supreme People's Court answered questions related to the judicial protection of geographical indications. The reporter's question clarified several situations that the people's court would not support in accordance with the law.

Question: After obtaining a registered trademark, can others be prohibited from using the place names contained in the trademark?

  Answer: Some trademarks contain geographical names, and these geographical names often have unique commercial value.

According to the "Trademark Law", even if the right to use a registered trademark is obtained, the right holder does not have the right to prohibit others from properly using the place names contained in the registered trademark.

Where another person legitimately uses a place name contained in a registered trademark, and the right holder brings a related lawsuit to the people's court, the people's court shall not support it in accordance with the law.

Question: Can the registrant of a collective geographical indication trademark arbitrarily permit or prohibit others from using the trademark?

  Answer: Within the scope of geographical indications and meet the conditions for the use of geographical indications, even if you do not apply to join a collective, association or other organization, you can legally use geographical indications; areas that do not meet the conditions for the use of geographical indications or exceed geographical indications Those within the scope cannot obtain the qualifications for the use of collective geographical indication trademarks through trademark licensing, joining, membership, etc.

Relevant organizations, as trademark registrants, collect so-called "membership fees" and similar fees through litigation, which do not comply with the provisions of the trademark law, and the people's courts shall not support them in accordance with the law.

Question: Can industry associations or related organizations request others to pay franchise fees through litigation based on their registered geographical indication collective trademarks?

  Answer: Geographical indications are a regional public resource. The registrant of a geographical indication collective trademark should be a local non-profit-making group, association or other organization. It should be legal, compliant, and self-disciplined. When defending rights, it should reasonably exercise litigation rights in accordance with the law.

Individual associations and organizations that use geographical indication collective trademarks to obtain franchise fees have no basis in the trademark law and file a lawsuit with the people's court to collect franchise fees. The people's court will not support it in accordance with the law.

Question: At present, there are still some "impact" litigation phenomena such as knowing that they do not have the basis of legitimate rights, seeking illegal interests, infringing on the legitimate rights and interests of others, or harming the legitimate business interests of others. What measures have the people's courts taken in this regard?

  Answer: Honest litigation is an important aspect of building an honest society.

In accordance with the goals and requirements of building a strong country with intellectual property rights, the People's Court has adopted a series of effective measures to reduce the cost of rights protection, increase the cost of infringement, shorten the litigation cycle, facilitate the parties to produce evidence, and effectively protect the legal rights of the right holders.

At the same time, with a clear attitude and strong measures, we have resolutely curbed malicious litigation, and successively issued multiple judicial interpretations to prevent false and malicious litigation. The Reply to Request Compensation for Reasonable Expenses on the Grounds of the Plaintiff’s Abuse of Rights stipulates that for the plaintiff who filed a lawsuit in bad faith, the defendant shall request the plaintiff to compensate the plaintiff for reasonable attorney fees, transportation expenses, board and lodging expenses, etc., which he paid in accordance with the law. , The people's court supported it.

The people’s courts may fine and detain the parties who file a malicious lawsuit according to the severity of the case. Those who constitute a crime shall be investigated for criminal responsibility in accordance with the law.

In short, we must weave the cage of the secret system so that the parties involved in the malicious litigation can "steal chickens and lose money."

  In the next step, the Supreme People’s Court will thoroughly study and implement Xi Jinping’s thoughts on the rule of law, and guide courts across the country to uphold the supremacy of the people’s interests and to protect fair and reasonable intellectual property rights. It will also ensure public interest and incentives for innovation, and effectively protect the general public and small, medium and micro enterprises. Legal rights.

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