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In Search of a Trade Mark: Search Practices and Bureaucratic Poetics

Bellido, Jose, Kang, Hyo Yoon (2016) In Search of a Trade Mark: Search Practices and Bureaucratic Poetics. Griffith Law Review, . ISSN 1038-3441. (doi:10.1080/10383441.2016.1170654)

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Trade marks have been understood as quintessential ‘bureaucratic properties’. This article suggests that the making of trade marks has been historically influenced by bureaucratic practices of search and classification, which in turn were affected by the possibilities and limits of spatial organisation and technological means of access and storage. It shows how the organisation of access and retrieval did not only condition the possibility of conceiving new trade marks, but also served to delineate their intangible proprietary boundaries. Thereby they framed the very meaning of a trade mark. By advancing a historical analysis that is sensitive to shifts, both in actual materiality and in the administrative routines of trade mark law, the article highlights the legal form of trade mark as inherently social and materially shaped. We propose a historical understanding of trade mark law that regards legal practice and bureaucratic routines as being co-constitutive of the very legal object itself.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1080/10383441.2016.1170654
Uncontrolled keywords: Intellectual property; law in action; media technology; trade marks; legal history
Subjects: K Law
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > Kent Law School
Depositing User: Sarah Saines
Date Deposited: 28 Jun 2016 14:34 UTC
Last Modified: 29 May 2019 17:32 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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