Newsletter Edition 47 - May 2023


A tireless IP advocate

Lawyer José Carlos Tinoco Soares has devoted his entire life to intellectual property. From the age of 12, when he first entered the field, until today, he has demonstrated unwavering dedication. As the author of nearly two dozen books on trademarks, patents, copyright, and unfair competition, Tinoco Soares is an early advocate for the cause of intellectual property, actively involved in Brazilian entities like ABPI, ASPI, and ABAPI, as well as international organizations such as AIPPI and INTA. Upon reaching 80 years of professional activity, he graciously granted the following interview:

What were the most memorable moments of your career?

José Carlos Tinoco Soares: It was when we filed a Rescission Action against Ruling No. 142 regarding the “twenty-year prescription of the trademark” and successfully obtained its “cancellation” by a vote of eight to one in front of the Second Section of the Superior Court of Justice (cf. AR No. 512, dated 12-05-1999). However, the greatest glory was writing in the Spanish language the Proyecto de Ley Uniforme de Propiedad Industrial Sur e Latino-Americana (Uniform Industrial Property Law Project for South and Latin America), in collaboration with the National Academy of Legal Sciences of Bolivia, consisting of 680 articles encompassing everything related to trademarks, patents, and all other forms of protection and defense.

How do you assess the evolution of intellectual property in recent decades?

JCTS: The evolution has been remarkable worldwide, as rights protection has significantly increased. However, unfortunately, this is not the case in Brazil, where the protection for advertising slogans, trade names, and establishment titles has been removed.

According to WIPO data for 2022, Brazil ranks 30th in the global patent ranking. How can we improve this position?

JCTS: By promoting industrial property and encouraging not only inventors but also company owners to enhance the protection of their patents and trademarks.

How do you view the current IP panorama? Should intellectual property legislation be revised? What are the key points?

JCTS: In the case of Brazil, it is quite poor because many countries in the Americas have more efficient protection modalities. Therefore, legislation should be revised to include, among other things: advertising slogans, trade names, establishment titles, claims for ownership, border measures, evidence data, plant varieties protection, and integrated circuits.

How do you assess the performance of the BPTO (Brazilian Patent and Trademark Office)? Is the institution prepared to meet the new demands for trademarks and patents?

JCTS: Despite making considerable efforts and significantly improving in terms of trademark publications and decisions,  the BPTO still falls significantly behind when it comes to patents. The backlog in patent processing is exceptionally high, which is why they should adopt the fast-track patent system that we have envisioned. Unfortunately, the project has not been approved. Therefore, the BPTO is not yet prepared to meet the new demands for patents.