The CHROMA case: for the purpose of registration the transliterations into Latin characters of Greek words must be treated as words written in Greek characters

By decision of 16 December 2010 (T-281/09), the General Court of the European Union held that the word sign CHROMA, whose registration for products of classes 11 and 19 of the Nice Agreement of 1957 was requested by the Deutsche Steinzeug Cremer & Breuer AG, is a transliteration into Latin characters of the Greek word "χρώμα " (colour) - whose meaning can be directly understood by the concerned consumer (Greek-speaking in this case) - and is therefore covered by the absolute ground for refusal under Article 7 (1) (c) of Regulation 207/2009 on Community trademark. As stated by the decision, Article 7 (1) (c) of Regulation 207/2009 - in providing that "trade marks which consist exclusively of signs or indications which may serve, in trading, to designate the kind, quality, quantity, intended purpose, value, geographical origin or the time of production of the goods or of rendering of the service, or other characteristics of the good or service" cannot be registered - pursues an aim of public interest. In this case, the use of the word "colour" conveys a message that can immediately be catched by the concerned consumer, indicating the presence of a rage of products of various colours, different from the white colour commonly used for ceramic bathroom fittings and ceramic building materials for bathrooms.

03/28/2011 | Trade Mark