Issa Trademark? Errrr...Copyright
A Quick and Dirty Intellectual Property Overview
It’s extremely important for me as a trademark and business attorney to help my clients understand the importance of protecting and understanding their intellectual property (IP). There is immense confusion about what intellectual property actually is and why it’s so important for the protection of your business and brand reputation. I cannot even begin to count how many times a family member or friend has approached me requesting my assistance with securing a “patent” for their book, “copyright” for their business name or “trademark” for their new invention.
If you’ve ever been confused about all the legal mumbo jumbo, here’s a quick and dirty IP overview to clear things up:
Patents protect new inventions. There are three types of patents: design, plant, and utility patents. Design patents protect the “ornamental features” of an invention -- in other words the way an invention looks. Plant patents protect plants that have been asexually reproduced -- i.e. reproduction by a method other than seeds. Plants that can be discovered in nature are non-patentable. Finally, utility patents protect how an invention functions. If you’ve created a new invention, I highly recommend hiring a patent agent or patent attorney to assist you with securing your patent. (I’m not a patent attorney, however, Andrea Evans is. She’s an amazing #GirlBoss.)
Copyright protection extends to artistic and literary works, such as graphic design, books, blogs, website, photography, films, music, choreography, and sculptures. Copyright attaches to an artistic work from the moment of creation; however, federal registration is HIGHLY recommended. Trust me, it makes my life so much easier to send a cease and desist to someone jacking your artistic style if you have a federally registered copyright. If you need my help, purchase my Copyright Package and you will be one step closer to having your work legally legit.
Trademarks protect words or designs used to identify your business or products. In very rare cases, you can even protect colors in connection with the sale of your goods (Tiffany has protected their Tiffany Blue color). Trademarks are powerful business assets that can appreciate in value, protect your brand and prevent others from capitalizing off of your hard work. I always recommend filing a federal trademark to ensure you receive the widest scope of protection for your mark on a national scale. Trademarks are my JAM. If you need help making sense of your IP, responding to a USPTO Office Action (those are never fun), or securing your mark, let’s chat. Schedule your FREE Discovery Call to protect your business name or logo.
Hopefully, this Quick & Dirty Overview helped you gain clarity when it comes to protecting your business’s intellectual property. If you’d like to conduct an audit of your business’s intellectual property and overall level of protection, download my FREE Checklist for creative business women and see where your business scores on the SHE-EO Protection Scale.
Here are your BIG Three Takeaways from this article:
Remember patents protect inventions, copyright protects artistic and literary works, and trademarks protects words or design logos that identify your business’s goods or services.
Download the She-EO Freebie: Your Guide to Copyright, Contract and Content Protection to assess where your business falls on the She-EO Protection Scale.
Schedule your FREE Discovery Call to discuss your business’s Intellectual Property and strategize a path for protection.
Do you have any remaining questions about Trademarks, Copyrights or how to protect your business? Let me know in the comments.
This article is for informational and educational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice nor does it create an attorney-client relationship between you and The Creator’s Law Firm. You should always consult with an attorney for specific questions related to your business. Some states may consider this attorney advertising.