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Archived updates for Monday, January 31, 2005

KIPO Sees Application Spike; Lots of Multi-Functional Shoes

According to a January 25, 2005 press release from the Korean Intellectual Property Office, the number of patent applications (excluding utility model, design and trademark) filed in Korea last year was 140,176, a 17.4% increase from 2003. The previous rate of increase in patent applications has been only 2~3% yearly since 2000. It is thought that the reason for the increase was caused by the increase in R&D investments of companies.

An earlier press release by the KIPO also noted that "Patent applications for multi-functional shoes are increasing, with the growing interest in health and safety. On January 13, the total number of patent and utility model applications for multi-functional shoes filed with KIPO from 1994 to 2003 is 363 cases: 36 cases in 2000, 62 cases in 2001, 77 cases in 2002, 81 cases in 2003. As for the type of shoes, applications for 'fatigue relief shoes with finger pressure, massage and fomenting functions' were 167 cases (46.0%), followed by 66 applications for 'temperature controlling shoes with an embedded thermostat'. There were 53 applications (14.6%) for shoes that increase amounts of exercise by heightening or shortening heels. Length controllable shoes and shoes with wireless transmission function for preventing missing children have been introduced as well."

The KIPO also said on January 10 that "typefaces are to have exclusive rights under ‘Design protection law (previous design law)’ from July 2005; the law was announced the end of last year."
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