Trade mark decision

BL Number
Decision date
2 April 2003
Hearing Officer
Mr E S Smith
07, 09, 11, 12, 17
Registered Proprietor
Real Time Networks
Applicants for a declaration of Invalidity
Ford Motor Company
Application for Invalidation
Sections 3(1)(b); 3(1)(c) & 3(3)(b)


Section 3(1)(b) - Application for invalidation failed

Section 3(1)(c) - Application for invalidation failed

Section 3(3) - Application for invalidation failed

Points Of Interest

  • 1. The burden on the applicants for invalidation is only prima facie, but it is still higher than mere assertion.


The applicants contended that the word ZINK being phonetically the same as the word ZINC, (and also being the German word for Zinc) the mark was objectionable under the Sections cited for any goods consisting of or incorporating zinc, and deceptive in respective of goods that might be thought to be so constituted.

The proprietor could not be contacted and hence the registration was not defended. On the basis of Section 72 however, the Hearing Officer found that the case of invalidity had to be made out.

In the Hearing Officer’s view the mark was ‘heavily stylised’ and thus did not consist “exclusively ….etc”. The stylisation also conveyed the message that it was ‘origin specific’. The application under Sections 3(1)(b) and 3(1)(c) failed accordingly.

The applicants had not provided sufficient information as to how and in respect of which goods the mark might be deceptive. The Section 3(3) application therefore failed also.

Full decision O/093/03 PDF document69Kb