Rob LeBlanc in Managing Intellectual Property: WIPO Launches AI-Powered TM Image Search Tool

04/05/2019

Haynes and Boone, LLP Associate Rob LeBlanc talked with Managing Intellectual Property about the World Intellectual Property Organization’s (WIPO’s) release of a new trademark search tool for brands that uses artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning.

Here is an excerpt:

The trademark search function is the latest of WIPO’s AI-powered tools, following its recent patent-focused product launch, WIPO Translate.

Rob LeBlanc, a senior associate at Haynes and Boone in Dallas, Texas, says that while image-based searching is “highly efficient,” the problem is that “it only returns highly relevant images.” LeBlanc says this is a cause for concern in a trademark context because “exact similarity of the relevant images is not required.”

LeBlanc says that the traditional clearance method using design codes will remain his primary approach, but that WIPO’s new tool could provide a helpful second level of review, “to confirm that my initial search returned the most relevant references.” He says he will consider placing heavier reliance on the technology over time, but that “this trust must be earned.”

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