Risks associated with trademarks are rapidly evolving and increasing. The explosion of mobile technology and search engine advertising has created new risks to brands, as can be seen with highly-publicized litigation over Google search results and other unprecedented factors. While the massive proliferation of trademarks has increased your client’s infringement risks, the big data age has also improved the technology for trademark searches.
With the help of artificial intelligence, manual searches and unintelligible search results that require hours of evaluation can become a thing of the past. Today's trademark search tools are better, faster, and more accurate than ever before, which allows trademark attorneys to do more in less time. Join us as we review seven factors that legal pros should know about how today's trademark search tools can help.
Why Lawyers Need Better Trademark Search Tools
As an attorney, you're called upon to do mark research and write an opinion based on it. If you feel a client's risk is within normal or acceptable guidelines, you may advise that they are okay to move forward. While trademark search tools represent a significant advancement over manual search methodologies, not all tools are created equal.
If your goals are to do more within a smaller budget, while reducing client risks, it may be time to look beyond your current repertoire of mark search technologies. From a business perspective, there's simply too much risk with inefficient search tools that yield unhelpful results. Join us as we review seven things lawyers should know about today's trademark search tools.
1. Fast Search is Possible
Pulling search results shouldn't be a labor-intensive or time-consuming part of the mark search process. Any attorney who's used Google or a similar tool in day-to-day life knows the technology is there to provide hundreds of thousands of high-quality search results in seconds. With the help of tools with better processing power and improved indexing, attorneys can appreciate the noticeable benefit of instant results so they can begin assessing results and risks.
2. Unlimited Searches Offer Advantages
A single search isn't always sufficient. When you're paying on a per-search basis, the costs of research can quickly cut into your profitability potential. In addition, searching costs are complex, difficult to predict, and for many lawyers, hard to explain to clients. Moving away from legacy search tools with a pay-per-search pricing model can allow attorneys to increase client satisfaction. It can simplify your services without cutting into your bottom line as a business owner.
3. Artificial Intelligence Can Aid Assessment
As attorneys are well aware, effective trademark search looks far beyond "exact match" results for keywords or phrases. It's crucial to consider semantic or phonetic similarities, as well as dozens of other factors in search results. Artificial intelligence, based on complex algorithms, can significantly improve the quality and scope of search results.
Major search engines use hundreds of algorithmic factors to rank search results based on semantics, user search history, and intent. There's no reason this level of sophisticated artificial intelligence cannot be leveraged in the trademark research realm.
The best trademark search algorithms contain dozens of criteria to apply hundreds of contextual criteria to indexed content. The result of a trademark search tool that's driven by artificial intelligence is more results because it's able to dig into the many factors a skilled attorney uses in evaluation. However, instead of having to manually sift through hundreds of pages of semi-relevant results, these matches are ranked intelligently by a number of important risk criteria.
4. A Global Marketplace View is Crucial
Even if your current plan is to launch your product just in a country or two, you never know what the future might bring in terms of global expansion, and you’d better be prepared. An effective trademark search doesn't focus exclusively on organizations and registered marks within your jurisdiction. Instead, an effective trademark search evaluates the global marketplace and litigation risks in seconds by evaluating hundreds of international sources and translating risks into English for easy analysis.
5. Quality is Everything
The process of assessing risks based on trademark search results is a complex process that requires deep knowledge of international and domestic laws and case history. Even if a proposed trademark has some risk, these may be deemed acceptable based on surrounding factors such a product or regional differences. In other cases, an attorney may choose to advise that a client proceeds with caution based on another brand's history of litigation.
With better-quality search results, the risk assessment process can be significantly simplified and sped up without increasing the potential for error. By being able to quickly scope out surrounding risk factors, as opposed to simple matches, attorneys can complete a client's risk assessment efficiently.
6. Database Reach Matters
A trademark search tool is only as effective as its search material. Attorneys are wise to evaluate just how far-reaching indexed content is before proceeding to use a tool in their practice. The best search tools don't only include all common law sources and major databases, they look at other massive sources of open-source content, such as data from various apps stores.
7. Reduce Human Error
Human error is a significant concern of many trademark attorneys, who are often have detail-oriented personalities. Many legal pros rely on a variety of professional tools and safeguards to protect against mistakes, which can include checklists, internal processes, and constant fatigue-awareness.
Intuitive search tools can also be a critical tool for reducing margin-of-error. A well-designed user interface (UI) can significantly reduce errors. Smart results indexing can also aid in accuracy of review. The best search tools provide a variety of tools to prevent mistakes, including a summarized, numerical risk score on search results.