Trademarks Patents and Copyrights
A few words about trademarks, patents, and copyrights
When you are starting out, you should to do some research, before grabbing that awesome domain name. To spend hours and days building your online business, only to find out that someone has beat you to it.
You’ll want to be sure to have a clear understanding of trademarks, patents, and copyrights, to prevent any unwanted legal complications.
Although not strictly necessary, but you should at least check to make sure you’re not infringing on other patents or trademarks with your products or business.
The United States Patent and Trademark Office defines them as the following:
- Trademark: A word, phrase, symbol, and/or design that identifies and distinguishes the source of the goods of one party from those of others.
- Patent: A limited duration property right relating to an invention, granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office in exchange for public disclosure of the invention.
- Copyright: Protects works of authorship, such as writings, music, and works of art that have been tangibly expressed.
Depending on what product you plan to sell, you may or may not want to apply for one of these.
For instance, if you want to sell t-shirts with any Professional Sports characters on them, you’re going to run into trouble.Large companies have the resources to protect their names and trademarks vigorously, and will target anyone violating their business name and “reputation”. I’m sure you have read about some small business being threatened with lawsuits. Do not risk it! Start off correctly and make sure to research with the appropriate copyright, patent, and trademark organization.
The information provided on this website does not, and is not intended to, constitute legal advice. It is general introductory information only and should not be construed as or relied upon as legal advice. For any legal advice, contact the appropriate parties.