1. Introduction

This help file will assist you in taking full advantage of the functionality of the CF Similarity system. Hence, all the different parts of the system which you can use are explained in this help file.

CF Similarity is a search tool that can be used during opposition or cancellation proceedings to assess for given Goods and Services which trade mark offices consider them (and to what degree) similar or dissimilar.

After selecting the option and entering the search criteria, a Result table is generated which contains all the related comparisons in the database.

In the Result table you can select the pairs that are most relevant to you. These are then added to your "selected pairs". By clicking on the "View" button you are then taken to the overview page that shows all your selected pairs. In a next step you can click on the summary of reasoning button. This shows you these pairs, along with small reasoning phrases.

2. Preference Settings

At any time you change one of the configuration parameters of the displays of the application, this is recorded. On your next visit these parameters will be kept.

  • Interface language. By default the interface language is the one of the browser. Once you change it your last choice is recorded.
  • Search language. By default the search language is the one of the browser. Once you change it your last choice is recorded.
  • Selected office. By default all participating trade mark offices are selected. Once you change it your last choice is recorded.
  • Set the maximum number of results per page. It is used to customize the number of returned results. The possible options are 10, 25, 50 and 100. The initial default is 25.
  • Configure the layout of the Result table. When clicking on the "select columns" button, you can define what columns you would like to see (and in what order).

These configuration parameters are only saved if you access the system from the same PC and if this PC has the cookies enabled.

3. Search

This tool will work best when you define a specific search for one comparison. This means you should specify the good or service and the nice class for the earlier and the contested trademark.

In case you don't obtain results you should think of broadening your search.

This should be done with care, because if a search is too broad it will lead to too many results and you will lose the overview.

The Search criteria are organized in the following way:

3.1. Term and Nice Class

This refers to the contested trademark and earlier rights details:

  • Nice Class: Insert the class of the contested trademark / earlier rights.

    The corresponding values can be any number from 1 to 45 (according to Nice classification). You should select the class(es) you want to search for. It can be more than one.

  • Term: Insert the expressions of the contested trademark/ earlier rights.

    Here you fill in the goods and services you are looking for. If you search for more than one Goods and services they should be separated by semi-colons. The search algorithm will recognize the stem of the expressions, for which e.g. it does not matter if you look for singular or plural.

3.2. Select Offices

Once you have selected the terms you would like to compare, you can also filter the office(s) from which you would like to retrieve results.

3.3. Search in

All the Goods and Services that are compared are all part of the harmonised database. This is a shared list between EU offices, and as such, the translations have been made available in all the EU languages. Here you can choose in which of the EU languages you would like to see the Goods and Services.

3.4. Degree of Similarity

Once the terms that are to be compared are entered in the Search criteria, you can also filter the search results according to the associated similarity of the pairs to be searched for.

Therefore, the filtering criterion, called "Select pairs of similarity" has the following available options:

  • Any. This is the pre-selected option, which means that there is no filter and you get all results.
  • Identical
  • High Degree of Similarity
  • Similar
  • Low Degree of Similarity
  • Dissimilar

3.5. Results

Once you click on the Search button the Result table is shown, containing all the associated results.

The table displays the results in a grouped and sorted manner. You can always see the number of pairs that have been found at the top of the Result table. The generated table should contain by default following columns, named in the given order:

  • #. This is the pair number. In any communication about a pair you should mention this number.
  • Office. The Office that has made the comparison.
  • Left class. The number of the left class.
  • Left term. This is the good or service of the left trade mark.
  • Similarity. The similarity associated with the comparison.
  • Right class. The number of the right class.
  • Right term. This is the good or service of the right trade mark.
  • Reasoning category. The associated reasoning category (ies) of the pair.

    The possible values to be inserted are numbers from 1 to 9 corresponding to the CANON criteria:

    1. Producer
    2. End User
    3. Distribution Channels
    4. Goods in competition
    5. Complementary goods
    6. Methods of use
    7. Purpose
    8. Nature
    9. Other

    Scroll mouse-over the reasoning category and the corresponding numbers are displayed

  • Document. When clicking on this you are taken to the decision or reference document that best represents this comparison.
  • Details. If you click on the detail icon you will be taken to the detail page of that comparison. This is a full page view entirely dedicated to this comparison.
  • Select. If you click on the select all, it will add all the comparisons in the Result table immediately to the selected pairs. This means the summary of reasoning will be based on those comparisons.

    You can also click to add one pair to the selected pairs.

    You can select multiple pairs at the same time by selecting several pairs in sequence.

Apart from the above columns, you can also display a set of other columns which you can view. These columns are the following:

  • Decision Base. The possible options are the following:
    • Established Jurisdiction
    • Not Yet Fully Established Jurisdiction
    • International Office Standards
    • National Office Standards
  • Origin. The possible options are the following:
    • ECJ (European Court of Justice)
    • GC (General Court)
    • BOA (Boards of Appeal)
    • OD (Opposition Decision)
    • CD (Cancellation Decision)
    • NC (National Court)
    • Office Practice
  • Decision Paragraph
  • Decision Language
  • Case Name
  • Date created

For most columns the following options are available:

  • Sort Ascending
    • This option sorts in ascending order the column data which has been selected.
  • Sort Descending
    • This option sorts in descending order the column data which has been selected.
  • Select Columns
    • This option is used to choose which columns should be displayed in the Result table.
    • When a column is checked, then it will be displayed in the Result table. If unchecked, it will not be displayed.

3.6. No comparison available

Important note: when no search results are retrieved for particular comparisons this should not lead to any conclusion on their degree of similarity.

3.7. Selected pairs

Once you have selected the pairs of your interest you can list them by clicking the "View Button"

This then brings you to a table that contains all the pairs which have been selected in one Selected Results table.

The structure of this table is identical to the structure of the Results table, except that you have the possibility to remove comparisons by clicking on the icon in the outer right column.

You can always see the number of pairs that have been selected.

The Selected Results table contains the following columns, which cannot be further configured:

  • #
    • This is the pair number. In any communication about a pair you should mention this number.
  • Office
    • The Office that has made the comparison.
  • Left class
    • The number of the left class.
  • Left term
    • This is the good or service of the left trade mark.
  • Similarity
    • The similarity associated with the comparison.
  • Right class
    • The number of the right class.
  • Right term
    • This is the good or service of the right trade mark.
  • Reasoning category
    • The associated reasoning category (ies) of the pair.
    • The possible values to be inserted are numbers from 1 to 9 corresponding to the CANON criteria:
      • 1 . Producer
      • 2 . End User
      • 3 . Distribution Channels
      • 4 . Goods in competition
      • 5 . Complementary goods
      • 6 . Methods of use
      • 7 . Purpose
      • 8 . Nature
      • 9 - Other
    • Scroll mouse-over the reasoning category and the corresponding numbers are displayed
  • Document
    • When clicking on this you are taken to the decision or reference document that best represents this comparison.
  • Details
    • If you click on the detail icon you will be taken to the detail page of that comparison. This is a full page view entirely dedicated to this comparison.
  • Delete
    • You can also click on this icon to remove a particular comparison from the Selected Results table.

Below the Selected Results table, are three buttons:

  • New search
    • When clicking on this button the Selected Results screen is closed and the search screen is shown again.
    • The search screen is blank, as you can start a new search from the beginning.
  • Back to previous screen
    • When clicking this button the Selected Results screen is closed and the search screen is shown again.
    • The search screen is in the same state as before. This means that the page displays the same search criteria and the same Results.
  • Download as excel
    • When clicking this button you can save the selected results to an excel file.
  • Summary of Reasoning

When you click on this button, a new page appears called Summary of Reasoning.

4. Summary of Reasoning

When you click on the Summary of Reasoning icon from the Selected Results, a new page appears which is called Summary of Reasoning.

This page shows the overview of the reasoning sentences for the selected comparisons:

  • The Summary of Reasoning is the summing up of the reasoning of each pair existing in the Selected Pairs table.
  • They are grouped per trade mark office.
  • You can copy the reasoning paragraphs at any time.
Index