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This article applies to selling in: Canada

Intellectual Property for Rights Owners

Note: The following information does not contain legal advice. You should consult a lawyer if you have specific questions about your IP rights or the IP rights of others.

Amazon is dedicated to ensuring that goods do not violate or infringe a Rights Owner's intellectual property (IP).

If you are a Rights Owner with a registered trademark, you may be eligible to enrol your brand in the Amazon Brand Registry.

Amazon Brand Registry provides access to powerful tools, including proprietary text and image search, predictive automation based on your reports of suspected intellectual property rights violations and increased authority over product listings with your brand name. To learn more and start the enrolment process, click here.

To learn more about intellectual property rights, please contact your local intellectual property office or lawyer.

Main types of IP

A. Trademark

A trademark is a word, symbol, or design (such as a stylized brand name or logo) that a company uses to identify its goods or services and to distinguish them from other companies' goods and services. Generally, trademark laws exist to prevent customer confusion about the source of goods or services.

A trademark owner usually protects a trademark by registering it with a country-specific trademark office (such as the United States Patent and Trademark Office). In some cases, a person or company might have trademark rights based on only the use of a mark in commerce, even though the mark was never registered with a country-specific trademark office. Those rights are known as "common law" trademark rights and can be more limited.

Example: Trademarks are often displayed on Amazon’s product detail pages in the form of product and brand names listed on a product detail page. For example, the “Pinzon by Amazon” trademark appears above the product title in the brand value portion of the product detail page shown below.

ASIN-Level: If a product or product packaging available on Amazon bears your trademark but you do not make that product, then you may report the entire ASIN, or entire product detail page, for trademark infringement.

Seller-Level: If you believe a particular offer from a seller is listing a product that infringes your trademark, then you may report that offer as infringing. However, expect the product detail page and ASIN to remain live if you report an offer. When you report an offer, and not an entire ASIN, you are only referring to the offer for infringement, not the entire ASIN or product detail page. It is also helpful to provide a test buy with a valid Order ID to support your report.

Product Detail Page: If your trademark is being used on the product detail page, but the product being sold is not your product, you may report use of the trademark on the product detail page as infringing.

If the trademark you are reporting is used solely to indicate compatibility with your product, we may reject your notice.

B. Copyright

A copyright protects original works of authorship, such as videos, movies, songs, books, musicals, video games, paintings, etc. Generally, copyright law is meant to incentivize the creation of original works of authorship for the benefit of the public. To receive copyright protection, a work of authorship must be created by an author, and must have some amount of creativity. If someone is the author of an original work, then they typically own the copyright in that work.

In some countries, a copyright owner can protect its copyrighted material by registering the material with a country-specific copyright office (for example, US Copyright Office). . You can generally use your own copyrighted images on product detail pages to sell a product; however, you should not take images from other sources and add them to product detail pages without the Rights Owner's permission.

Note: When you add your copyrighted image or copyrighted text to a product detail page , you grant Amazon and its affiliates a licence to use the material. For more information, see the Amazon Services Business Solutions Agreement. Other sellers can list their identical products for sale on pages to which you have added your copyrighted images or text, even if you no longer sell that product.

Example: The owner of the Pinzon brand took the photos of the towels shown below and owns the copyright of the sheets images. If a seller were to copy these images to sell their product on another product detail page, that seller could be violating the Rights Owner's copyright of the sheets images.

ASIN-Level: If a product or its packaging is using your copyrighted work, such as text or images, without your permission, then you may report the entire ASIN for copyright infringement.

Seller-Level: If you believe a particular offer from a seller listing a product that infringes your copyright, then you may report that offer as infringing. However, expect the product detail page and ASIN to remain live if you report an offer. When you report an offer, and not an entire ASIN, you are only referring to the offer for infringement, not the entire ASIN or product detail page. It is also helpful to provide a test buy with a valid Order ID to support your report.

Image or Text: If your copyrighted image is used on a product detail page without your permission, then you may report the image as infringing. However, expect the product detail page and ASIN to remain live if you report an image or text. When you report an image or text, and not an entire ASIN, you are only referring to the image or text for infringement, not the entire ASIN or product detail page.

C. Patent

A patent is a form of legal protection for inventions. An issued patent grants its owner the right to exclude others from making, using or selling the invention for a fixed number of years. In the United States, there are two principal types of patents: Utility patents and Design patents. Utility patents, the most common kind of patent, can be granted for the following:

  • A new machine
  • Article of manufacture
  • Composition of matter, process, or improvement to any of those
  • Protects the structure and functions of a product (rather than how it looks)

Utility: A utility patent is different from a trademark in that it protects an invention (such as a new machine) rather than a word or logo used to identify the source of the product. A utility patent is different from a copyright in that it does not protect the expressive content of a creative work like a book or a picture, but instead protects a specific invention, such as a new method of printing books or a new type of camera.

If an ASIN or product on Amazon is infringing your utility patent, then you may report the entire ASIN. It is helpful to provide a court order or an International Trade Commission order finding infringement of the reported patent with your notice

Design: Design patents are granted for the unique look of a product, but do not cover the functions of a product. In the United States, design patent numbers begin with the letter "D".

D. Parallel Imports

Rights owners may prohibit third parties from importing their goods into the European Economic Area (EEA) or Brazil without their consent. They cannot prohibit the resale of products that were legally imported into the EEA or Brazil with their authorization. For instance, the sale of a product that was originally legally imported into the UK then being re-sold by a third party to a buyer in Italy is not an IP-infringing parallel import. This is also the case for copyrighted content into Turkey.

You can report parallel imports as trademark or copyright infringement, depending on your IP. Make sure to specify whether the product (version) is a parallel import, i.e. has never been imported into the EEA with your consent and how you identified the product as being a parallel import. You may also choose to specify certain sellers listing on a product detail page that are offering parallel import goods, in which case we recommend that you make a test buy to confirm whether a seller is indeed offering parallel import goods or reference specific text in the implicated sellers product description page.

E. Right of Publicity

The right of publicity, often called personality rights, is the right of an individual to control the commercial use of his or her name, image, likeness or other unequivocal aspects of one's identity. You cannot post content that infringes on a person’s right of publicity nor force or otherwise coerce a person without amicable agreement to allow use of their rights of publicity.

If you are claiming a right to publicity you must specifically claim your right and provide evidence to support your claim for us to complete our investigation.

Types of notices not accepted on Amazon

Compatibility: Amazon does not enforce notices seeking to remove true statements indicating compatibility with trademarked products. If a product detail page clearly and truthfully states the product being sold on that page is compatible with a trademarked product, Amazon will not take action on a notice directed to the use of the trademarked term.

Location: If you are reporting infringement of a registered trademark or patent, your registered trademark or patent must be registered in the country where you are reporting the infringement. Amazon does not take action on intellectual property notices concerning registered trademarks, designs or patents from countries other than the country for which takedown is requested. For example, if you have a trademark registered in Italy, and you ask Amazon to remove an ASIN from Amazon in the United States, Amazon will likely reject your notice.

Minimum Advertised Price (MAP) Agreements: Amazon respects a manufacturer's right to enter into exclusive distribution agreements for its products. However, violations of such agreements do not constitute intellectual property rights infringement. As the enforcement of these agreements is a matter between the manufacturer and the resellers, Amazon does not assist in this type of enforcement activity.

Exclusive Distribution (except in China, France and the United Arab Emirates) – Amazon does not enforce exclusive distribution rights except within the countries that have laws specifically referring to selective or exclusive distribution.

Parallel Import or Warranty claims (except where applicable in the EU, Brazil or Turkey): Amazon only accepts parallel import claims as it conforms to each marketplace’s governing laws. For example, if a Rights Owner can legally claim rights on imports into the EU, those same rights will not extend to the US market. Warranty claims will only be evaluated when the Rights Owner has a valid Parallel Import claim.

Barcode Ownership: Amazon does not enforce ownership over barcode, UPC or EAN.

Reporting Infringement

To submit a notice of IP infringement, you must be the Rights Owner who owns the IP being reported or an agent with permission from the Rights Owner to submit notices on his or her behalf. Rights Owners may also share answers to frequently asked questions on how Amazon handles infringement complaints in our seller forums.

If your brand is enrolled in Amazon Brand Registry, you can submit a report via the Report a Violation (RAV) tool or through our Report Infringement form. Rights Owners who do not have a brand enrolled in Amazon Brand Registry can submit via the Report Infringement form. It is a requirement that a notice submitter be logged into an Amazon account in order to use either form to submit a report for infringing trademark, copyright, patent or other IP claim..

You should include the following information in your report:

  • Specific identification of the IP that you believe is infringed. For trademark, copyright, patents and parallel import, include the registration number, written description of or link to copyrighted work, first date of use, etc.
  • Nature of infringement (whether infringement occurs on the product, physical product packaging, image on the product detail page or text on the product detail page).
  • List of infringing products (including Amazon Standard Identification Numbers (ASINs) and/or URLs for the product detail page of the specified product). If you believe that only a subset of sellers are infringing, and you are not accusing the entire product detail page, click the checkbox next to the name of each seller that you are reporting in the Report Infringement form or RAV.
  • List of infringing sellers. If the infringing seller is listing on your ASIN, ensure that the specific sellers are identified to safeguard against the entire ASIN being actioned. Remember that a product detail page allows customers to view a specific product available on Amazon with information common to all sellers' offers for that product, such as the product's title, brand, images, bullet points, descriptions, variations (such as size or colour) and customer reviews. It can include one or more offers from both sellers or Amazon. Carefully review the selected Sellers to ensure that you are not reporting your own offer
  • Supporting documentation or any other information that will help Amazon in processing your complaint (such as order IDs for any test buys on the products you are reporting).
  • Your contact details (name, address, phone number, email address and secondary contact details that we can share with affected sellers).

Do not submit more than one type of IP violation per notice. In order to ensure quality and quick resolution of your notices, we will only process the specific complaint type that you have chosen in the Report Infringement form or RAV (such as, patent, trademark, or copyright). The following are examples of submissions that contain more than one complaint type within a notice:

  • Selecting trademark infringement and discussing copyright issues in the submission. The notice will be processed as a trademark complaint only. If you want to report infringement of a trademark and a copyright, file separate notices.
  • Indicating two trademark numbers in one notice, as only the first trademark number will be considered for that notice. If you want to report infringement of separate trademarks, file separate notices.

If circumstances have changed post-submission of your infringement complaint, you may submit a retraction.

How to obtain seller IDs when reporting infringement

If a seller's offers are infringing on your intellectual property or a product sold on Amazon is infringing your intellectual property, you can use RAV or the Report Infringement form to report one of the following:

  1. All sellers listing on the ASIN (product)
  2. Specific sellers' offers

Once you have determined which ASINs to report, the seller IDs are automatically populated in our systems by the Report Infringement form and RAV.

Both RAV and the Report Infringement form will auto-populate a list of sellers that are listing an ASIN or product detail page once you provide either an ASIN or URL. Select either ALL sellers or the Specific sellers option when submitting your report of intellectual property infringement.

Result from submitting a notice of infringement

You will receive a confirmation message that we are reviewing your notice. We will send you a follow-up message once your notice has been processed.

If your notice is valid, we will inform the responsible sellers about your claim and share your secondary contact information with them should they have any follow-up questions.

If your secondary contact information is not available, then we will share your primary contact information with the seller.

If your notice of infringement is accepted, we will remove the content that you reported and take appropriate action against the responsible sellers. Amazon does not share details of actions which are not already public in nature.

If your notice of infringement is rejected, we will not remove the content that you reported and we will not take action on the seller. You will receive a notification with the reason for rejection of your notice.

Important: The continuous submission of inaccurate or fake notices could lead to the removal of your submission privileges.

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