All business owners need to develop and protect their trademark portfolio. But many business owners don’t know the difference between a trademark, a copyright, and patent. In this article, trademark attorney Mark Trenner goes over some Trademark Basics for business owners.
First, let’s clarify the difference between a patent, a trademark, and a copyright. A patent protects a new and useful invention, be it a process or a device. A copyright protects a literary work, an artistic work, musical composition, or film, as long as it has been recorded in a tangible medium (not just an idea in your head – you have to actually paint the picture).
What is a Trademark?
A trademark is any word (or words) or logo, or combination of words and logo, that identifies the source or origin of goods or services. Trademarks identify the source of goods. Service Marks identify services.
Marks that identify goods are called Trademarks
Think about famous brands you already know. For example, the NIKE “swoosh” is a graphic logo. As soon as you see this famous swoosh, you instantly know that the Nike company is behind that product.
Another good example is STARBUCKS. Just hearing that word makes you think instantly of coffee. That’s what I mean by “identifies a source or origin of goods or services.”
Marks that identify services are called Service Marks
Think of ALLSTATE. They don’t sell a product. But you instantly know when you hear ALLSTATE that we are talking about a company that offers insurance – a service.
Want more information on Trademark Basics for Business Owners
Denver trademark attorney Mark Trenner answered some common questions about trademark basics for business owners in his most recent blog post. See the full article here: Common Trademark
Contact Mark Trenner at 720-221-3708 to find out if we can help your business with trademarks.