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Attestation marks and pseudo-certification marks: a divergence of roles in trademark law
Trade mark law is premised on the idea that trade marks and certification marks occupy different roles. This distinction, however, is not as binary as we may expect. This article explains how pseudo-certification marks, a previously unidentified type of mark, are being used as attestation marks indicating a departure from our understanding of the role of different types of marks. In light of this departure, this article considers the role of attestation marks in private governance regimes and the nature of certification marks as a form of intellectual property. This article argues the integrity of the trademark law system relies on different types of marks being regulated in light of their distinct roles, and pseudo-certification marks evade effective regulation. This article further argues that the trend of using pseudo-certification marks as attestation marks can be partially explained by the growing trend of developing brands around certifying marks and certifying bodies.