Trademark Searching Case Study: Turkey Hunt

Thanksgiving is a dangerous time to be a turkey.  I like to plan my annual turkey hunt right before Thanksgiving, so I can get into the shoes of the pilgrims and really get into the holiday spirit.  Luckily for real turkeys, I prefer hunting turkey trademarks to hunting those big dumb birds.  What can compare to the thrill of the hunt in the Trademark Electronic Search System (TESS)?  Trademark searches are a common occurrence here at Landon IP, but the turkey trademark hunt is a special holiday event.

So are you ready to hunt the king of birds (and Thanksgiving dinners)?  Continue reading as we venture into TESS!

TESS is accessible through the USPTO website, where the user can select “Search Marks” on the Trademarks homepage to access the TESS portal.  The TESS portal will pop up in a new tab or window, where the user can select from three search options: Basic Word Mark Search (keyword search form), Word and/or Design Mark Search (Structured), or Word and/or Design Mark Search (Free Form).   I prefer the third search option, which allows users to construct more complex search queries through a command line interface.  All available field codes are listed below the search form, and users can select the link for each “Code & Name” to view query formatting tips within the TESS Help Menu.

So how do we find those wily turkeys through this search form?  First, we look at the Design Search Code [DC] section under the TESS Help Menu, which instructs us to find the relevant design code through the Design Search Code Manual (available on the USPTO Web site). We browse through the hierarchical table of categories for the Design Search Code Manual, which lists Category 03 as Animals.  We select Category 03, and then we choose Category 03.15: “Birds, Bats” from the next available list.  Finally, we use the “Ctr+F” function on our browser to keyword search for “Turkey,” and we locate the design code 03.15.05 – “Turkeys.”

The Design Code Manual shows example trademarks for the narrowest categories.

Now the turkeys don’t stand a chance.  We use the formatting guidelines from the Help Manual to create a valid query (we also make sure to search for live trademarks only…who wants a dead turkey?).  The final query is “031505[DC] and LIVE[LD].” 

The query to capture all turkeys.

We retrieve 122 live turkey records, which means that there is more than enough turkey to go around!

One of the 122 live turkey records.

Are there any food trademarks that you’d like to share as a side dish?  Enjoy trademark hunting, and Happy Thanksgiving!

Patent Searches from Landon IP

This post was contributed by Joelle Mornini. The Intellogist blog is provided for free by Intellogist’s parent company Landon IP, a major provider of patent searches, trademark searches, technical translations, and information retrieval services.

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One Response

  1. Useful ideas, thanks for sharing them in Trademark Searching Case Study: Turkey Hunt The Intellogist Blog.

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