Sunday, February 08, 2015

What is the Likelihood of TTAB Affirmance of a Section 2(e)(1) Mere Descriptiveness Refusal?

I reviewed the TTAB's FOIA page in an attempt to determine, or at least estimate, the percentage of  Section 2(e)(1) mere descriptiveness refusals that were affirmed by the Board in calendar year 2014. I counted 98 decisions, of which 85 were affirmed and 13 reversed. This (by not means scientific) study suggests that about 1 out of 7 mere descriptiveness refusals was reversed by the Board, a number consistent with the results that I calculated in the last few years and with the estimates of others.

Two of these decision were precedential (all affirmances):
  • TOURBILLON & Design for""jewellery, horological and chronometric instruments."
  • YOUR CLOUD for cloud-computing related services.

Does this mean that practitioners are bringing many worthless appeals? That the USPTO examining attorneys are doing a good job? That the cost of an appeal is so low that it's worth a shot?

Read comments and post your comment here.

TTABlog note: Last year, the mere descriptiveness affirmance rate was about 82%. For last year's estimates, go here

Text copyright John L. Welch 2014.


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