Codes and Copyrights: Trademark Symbols and Their Meaning | OUPblog

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Codes and copyrights

By Binka Kirova and Ivan Penkin

There is nothing random about trademarks. Behind each trademark lies a well-considered move. Symbols are used to create an analogical correspondence between two elements and a concise form of expressing the essence or meaning of a certain object or idea. Should we want to deliver an idea that is to be adopted only by a certain person or circle of people, then that idea may be expressed in a coded manner. Organizations use symbology in trademarks to communicate subtle information, whether through words, ambigrams, religious symbols, or codes.

Binka Kirova and Ivan Penkin are the authors of “The code: the Da Vinci code, TM code, QR code …” in the Journal of Intellectual Property Law. Binka Kirova has worked in the Bulgarian Patent Office in the Department of Information and Trade Mark Search Services since 1998. She has published articles in the field of trademarks in the newspaper Money and in the Legal World magazine. Ivan Penkin has a master’s degree in Marketing and Business Economics from the University of National and World Economy (UNWE) Sofia, Bulgaria. Since 2009, he has been serving as an expert in the Patent Office of the Republic of Bulgaria in the Department of Formal and Substantial Examination of Trademarks and Geographical Indications.

The Journal of Intellectual Property Law & Practice (JIPLP) is a peer-reviewed journal dedicated to intellectual property law and practice. Published monthly, coverage includes the full range of substantive IP topics, practice-related matters such as litigation, enforcement, drafting and transactions, plus relevant aspects of related subjects such as competition and world trade law.

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