As the question arises in the title: What is the purpose of this protocol and, especially, what are the benefits over the Madrid system? What is the need for this protocol?

  • It's not clear, to me, what your question is trying to achieve. According to your links, the purpose of the Protocol is to govern the System. As is "what are the benefits over the Madrid sytem" - compared to what?
    – Rick
    Oct 14 at 11:42
  • The question is ultimatel Why is the madrid system itself not sufficient? Why is a protocol needed (and it wasn't present since the beginning)?
    – Ben
    Oct 14 at 11:50
  • 1
    I don't know enough to offer an answer but this may assist: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Madrid_system , especially the section that says the System has its legal basis in the multilateral treaty Madrid Agreement Concerning the International Registration of Marks of 1891, as well as the Protocol Relating to the Madrid Agreement (1989).
    – Rick
    Oct 14 at 12:59
  • 1
    The Madrid Agreement is from 1890 and reflects the reality of that day. Many important countries did not sign. The Madrid Protocol reflects the needs of the 1980's, and is better suited, so more countries signed it. I'm not versed enough in the minutiae of both treaties to give an answer laying out exactly what changed between them, though, but invalidation of trademarks in the home region rippling through was a major concern.
    – Polygnome
    Oct 14 at 13:20
  • Thanks a lot! So this raises up the question, why they simply didn't amend the Madrid system to the Protocol?
    – Ben
    Oct 14 at 13:30

To quote the material that you link:

The system makes it possible to protect a mark in a large number of countries by obtaining an international registration that has effect in each of the designated Contracting Parties.

Basically, it is the moral equivalent of autofiling an application in all or many member jurisdictions at the same time, which are then individually evaluated like any other domestic trademark application.

Otherwise, to trademark something in many countries around the world, you'd have to fill out hundreds of nearly identical applications that would have slight quirks particular to each country which would cost applicants more money since they'd also have to hire lawyers separately in each country they wanted a trademark to be effective in. This would also leave applicants who didn't go through those hoops with trademarks that weren't valid in large parts of the world. This is problematic in a global economy where many firms, even small ones, do business all over the world.

  • Thanks, but didn't/doesn't the Madrid system fulfill these needs already?
    – Ben
    Oct 15 at 6:41
  • @Ben The Protocol to which you link is part of the Madrid system that implements it (enacted roughly a century after it was first adopted). It says so right in the link.
    – ohwilleke
    Oct 15 at 19:40

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