The Russian National Intellectual Property Registry (the “Registry”) started operating online in April 2016 (click here to access the Registry’s website in Russian). The Registry was set up to keep records of intellectual property rights, including, first and foremost, objects of copyright and related rights, as well as registered trademarks, patented inventions, utility models and industrial designs.
The Registry is designed to become an efficient means of dealing with infringements of exclusive rights on the Internet, as well as proving the ownership of intellectual property rights. A key feature of the Registry should be its ability to automatically monitor potential copyright infringements on the Internet and send pre-trial notifications to relevant websites about infringements of exclusive rights. This tool can also help rightholders to make their marketing business plans and monetise their intellectual property.
The Registry should be useful to companies that have many objects of copyright and related rights as they are most vulnerable to abuse by developments in information technologies. Being registered with the Registry can prove the existence of copyright or related rights in case of disputes. Also, the e-monitoring solutions and e-notifications of copyright infringements should reduce the costs of detection for the rightholders. These infringement monitoring means should also enable international companies with registered trademarks identify the websites that use identification means illegally or sell counterfeit or “grey” goods.
Though the owner and administrator of the Registry is a commercial organisation, public authorities, including the Federal Service for Intellectual Property (Rospatent), have supported the idea and purpose of creating the Registry and have become its partners. This means that rightholders can rely on the public status of the Registry and use its information as appropriate evidence before the law enforcement agencies or the courts in case of disputes.
The Registry is also expected to act as a communication channel between stakeholders. Those wishing to acquire rights to registered intellectual property objects can contact the author/rightholder or their representative through the Registry. The rightholders will have the opportunity to publicly define the principles that regulate the use of their intellectual property by third parties.
The Registry’s operations should positively impact the future of the intellectual property rights market.
Rightholders who use registered intellectual property in Russia are advised to:
- consider registering their rights to intellectual property with the Registry;
- implement the proposed mechanisms in their monitoring system to detect infringements of their exclusive rights on the Internet.