Washington, D.C., Office Prepares for 116th Congressional Session

Published: December 1, 2018

U.S. Congressional Elections and Plans for the 116th Congressional Session

Last month, elections were held in the United States for the entire House of Representatives and a portion of the U.S. Senate. Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA-6th) and Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA-49th), two key IP champions from the U.S. House of Representatives will retire at the conclusion of this session of Congress. An IP champion from the U.S. Senate, Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT), is also retiring; however, the majority of INTA’s champions in Congress were re-elected or not up for election in this cycle, including the current leadership of the Congressional Trademark Caucus (CTC).

When the 116th session of Congress convenes in January, INTA will meet with the new members of Congress and new leadership of committees of interest to introduce the Association’s legislative goals and engage about trademark issues.

INTA Participates in the Five Trademark Offices Invited User Session in Seoul

In November, Alex Cho (Kim and Chang, South Korea), who serves on the Trademark Office Practices Committee (TOPC) TM5 subcommittee, represented INTA at the Five Trademark Offices (TM5) Invited User Session in Seoul, South Korea. During the session, users had the opportunity to ask questions and receive updates about the 15 TM5 joint projects, which are aimed at the harmonization or improvement of trademark procedures. The TM5 Offices value stakeholder participation and they maintain a website with information about the member intellectual property (IP) offices and their projects. (See the TM5 website at www.tmfive.org.)

National IPR Coordination Center IP Symposium

In late October, INTA participated in the Annual National Intellectual Property Rights (IPR) Coordination Center Symposium in Arlington, Virginia, which gathers government officials and brand owners to discuss IP enforcement and coordination. The focus of this year’s summit was brand engagement and outreach using social media. The symposium provided ideas for brand owners to connect with consumers and influencers. Government officials noted how they use social media to share information about enforcement actions and provide direct education to consumers about the dangers of counterfeit goods.

Panelists delineated how different social media platforms connect with consumers and the need to strategically engage, depending on the platform, including the creation of storylines, dialogue, videos, and pictures.

As part of the symposium, INTA’s Manager, Communications, Charles Kim, participated in a panel focused on using social media as a public education tool. Mr. Kim discussed INTA’s innovative social media strategy to support building consumer trust with brands and providing education and outreach to consumers and businesses. He also discussed INTA’s Unreal Campaign, which seeks to connect with students ages 14-18 to educate them about the dangers of counterfeit goods and importance of trademarks.

INTA PAC Hosts Reception at the 2019 INTA Leadership Meeting

INTA’s Political Action Committee (INTA PAC) Board of Governors hosted a reception at the INTA Leadership Meeting in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA, last month. The event featured special guest speaker, Ralph Brennan, who owns and operates with family members a number of iconic restaurants in New Orleans. In a packed room of INTA PAC supporters, Mr. Brennan discussed the importance of trademarks as a key component of his family’s business. INTA PAC supports both U.S. political parties and provides unique opportunities for INTA to advocate and represent brand owners’ interests in the U.S. Congress.

INTA’s Washington, D.C., Representative Office represents the Association’s 2,361 members in North America. Working in collaboration with staff at INTA’s headquarters in New York City, the Washington, D.C, Representative Office leads the Association’s policy, membership, marketing, and communications initiatives in Canada and the United States. To learn more about INTA’s activities in the region, please contact INTA Senior Director of Government Relations Deborah Cohn at [email protected].

Although every effort has been made to verify the accuracy of items in the INTA Bulletin, readers are urged to check independently on matters of specific concern or interest. Law & Practice updates are published without comment from INTA except where it has taken an official position.

© 2018 International Trademark Association