Hello, I’m Doug Jackson, founding attorney of The Law Firm of Douglas G. Jackson. Today, I want to talk to you about protecting your brand, logo, slogan, and other intellectual property, by registering your trademark.
You’ve worked hard to build your business and your brand. You might have a logo or a slogan, or other things that you associate with your brand. These things are called, intellectual property. Just like all property, you want to protect it from others. With abstract property that doesn’t have real borders, such as intellectual property, it can be easily stolen and used by others. This is why the United States has laws that protect intellectual property, such as trademark laws. To best protect your intellectual property, you will want to register your trademark.
To register your trademark, you will need to apply through the United States Patent and Trademark Office (the “USPTO”). The application consists of several criteria, payment, and providing the intellectual property that you want to protect.
If you do everything correctly, and select the proper categories, within a couple days, your application will be processed. Then, after about seven months, it will be approved and your trademark will registered. Once registered, if any person or business uses your trademarks or too close of a derivation thereof, you will have a strong case to bring legal action against that person or business. However, you will want to still due your due diligence to monitor the use of your trademark, or it can lose protection, just like Escalator did.Yes, I bet you didn’t know that did you? Escalator was the brand name of the moving steps. However, the USPTO ruled that it was officially genericized because even the company that sought to patent it, Otis Elevator Company, used “escalator” as a generic descriptive term in its own patents. This has also happened to other brands that we didn’t know exist today because they didn’t protect their brands. These brands became so ubiquitous that we think only of the word as the name of the product, and due to this genericism, they have lost their trademarks. Some of these include: aspirin, heroin, cellophane, trampoline, dry ice, kerosene, linoleum, yo-yo, zipper, and TV-Dinner.
Make sure that you protect your brand by registering your intellectual property as trademarked, or where applicable copyrighted or patented.
Also, remember, get your legal action with the Law Firm of Douglas G. Jackson.