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The Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO) has applied the international common application format (CAF) from January, 2010 (News Letter No. 183)



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1. The Korean Intellectual Property Office (KIPO) has applied the international common application format (CAF) from January, 2010

From January 2010, KIPO (Commissioner: Jung-sik KOH) has applied the international common application format. Accordingly, a patent application shall be submitted in a newly revised format.

In the common application format, the description items and order of an application form (such as, summary and detailed description of an invention, claims and others) are internationally unified by the major world patent offices in the Republic of Korea, the U.S., Japan and Europe, among others. In the case that an application is made using this format, the application is translated into a relevant language, to be conveniently submitted to a foreign country, such as the U.S., Japan and Europe, among others.

In the newly revised format, the item, ‘detailed description of an invention’, is deleted; the items, ‘citation list’, ‘reference to deposited biological material’, and ‘sequence listing free text’, among the others, are added; and the description order of some items, such as ‘brief description of drawings’, is changed.

KIPO reflected seven kinds of paper forms in connection with the common application format in the electronic filing software, such as a format making program, a patent document making program and others. KIPO also improved the document examination system.

2. Major contents of the revised design system effective from January 1, 2010

(1) Permission of the filing of 3D drawings:
- A 3-dimensional drawing(s), which is essentially made when a designer (company) develops a product, is itself allowed to be filed for an application. Therefore, the problem of making an additional drawing(s) for the application is solved.

(2) Complete liberalization in the method of making drawings and the number of drawings to be submitted:

① Liberalization in the method of making drawings
- The requirement of making a drawing(s) by an orthographic/orthogonal method for drawing is abolished, and an applicant can freely select a method for making a drawing(s).

② Liberalization in the number of a drawing(s) to be submitted
- A perspective view and six view drawings should be submitted under the old law. However, under the revised law, an applicant may submit only a drawing which clearly expresses the entire shape of a design and the contents of the creation.

(3) Expansion of items filed in an application being subjected to non-substantial examination:
- The six large classes (1,291 articles) are expanded to ten large classes (2,460 articles).

(4) Expansion of items being subjected to a set of articles
- The thirty-one items to be subjected to an application for a set of articles are expanded to eighty-six items.

3. The Supreme Court made the decision that “an internet link does not constitute an infringement of a copyright.”

Internet bulletin board users make a quick link to easily listen to the music. The Supreme Court made the decision that such a link is not against the copyright law.

Mr. CHO (age: 49), a songwriter, lodged a trial for compensation against an internet music service business company, “Danal”, asserting that he made a loss because the company provided consumers with his work, music, without permission. Regarding the trial for compensation, on December 20, 2009 Division II of the Supreme Court making the aforementioned decision announced that they finally confirmed the decision of the original trial that the company should pay Mr. CHO 3,000,000~6,000,000 Korea Won in damages, making the company take legal responsibility for providing the real-time streaming and download services.

In the sentencing, the court announced that, “the internet link merely indicates the internet location information or route on the work stored in a website server,” and “even though the internet music service companies provide information, such as the internet address (URL) where music is reproduced, to the users, they cannot be regarded as infringing the reproducing right or transmitting right of the music work of Mr. CHO.” However, the court decided that the streaming or download service infringed the reproducing right or transmitting right of the copyright holder.

4. An automatic patent evaluation system opens a new chapter in the patent management

KIPO announced that they completed the automatic patent evaluation system which promptly evaluates a great number of patents and selects excellent patents.

When a user inputs a particular patent number only, the automatic patent evaluation system analyzes the particular patent based on a comparison of the patent with an existing similar patent(s) registered in KIPO and provides, in real-time, the information of grade (or score) of the particular patent. The automatic patent evaluation system is a high-tech system to evaluate the quality level of each patent, by making the quantification of each kind of information disclosed in patent documents.

Prior to this system, Korean companies and public research institutes had to conduct the patent evaluation through the internal or external patent experts, to strategically manage thousands or tens of thousands of patents that they owned. Therefore, they had many difficulties in managing and operating their own patents because of the burdens of the process consuming a lot of time and costs.

The feature of the automatic patent evaluation system is to evaluate the quality level of a patent by drawing the evaluation elements which influence the values of the patent by right, technology and marketability and by processing them statistically.

KIPO will positively use the automatic patent evaluation system in connection with the analysis of quality of national R&D patent performance, the selective management of patents by universities and public research institutes, and the projects to support patent technology transfer and transaction, among others. This system is expected to have great effects in accuracy as well as in time and expense, by supplementing the existing patent evaluation conducted by the experts.


The Commissioners of the Patent Offices of three countries, the Republic of Korea, China and Japan, agreed to promote the intellectual property cooperation (News Letter No. 184)


The number of applications/registrations of intellectual property rights during the first half of this year decreased (150)