The new edition of the Nice classification also covers crypto goods and services

January 05, 2023


With the rise of the metaverse, the number of trademark applications seeking protection over virtual goods and NFTs is also increasing. The new revision of the Nice Classification for the purpose of trademark registration introduces changes that will provide more clarity on the classification of blockchain technologies.

The 12th edition entered into force on 1 January 2023 and includes the following additions and amendments:

Class 9:-

  • Addition of the items “downloadable digital files authenticated by non-fungible tokens [NFTs]”, “computer network routers”, “portable document scanners”, “cases for smartphones incorporating a keyboard”.
  • Amendment of the item “downloadable computer software for managing cyptocurrency transactions using blockchain technology” to “downloadable computer software for managing crypto asset transactions using blockchain technology”. 

Class 42:- 

  • Amendment of the item “information technology [IT] consultancy” to “information technology [IT] support services [troubleshooting of software]”. 
  • Amendment of the item “cryptocurrency mining / cryptomining” to “mining of crypto assets / cryptomining”.  
  • Addition of the item “archaeological excavation”. 

It is important to mention that the terms “virtual goods” and “non-fungible tokens [NFTs]” are unacceptable as such. The term ‘virtual goods’ should be further specified by stating the content to which the virtual goods relate (e.g. ‘virtual goods, namely virtual clothing’).

NFTs are to be understood as unique digital certificates, which authenticate a digital item, therefore the type of digital item authenticated by the NFT should also be clearly and precisely specified.

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