Patents vs Trademark vs Copyright
March 7, 2022
Patents, trademarks, and copyrights are vital intellectual property (IP) tools used by individuals and businesses to distinguish their brands and protect their original works and ideas. Though the protections afforded by each IP tool are quite different, people usually confuse them. An experienced Missouri intellectual property law attorney can enlighten you about how patents, trademarks, and copyrights differ from each other.
With over 25 years of extensive experience, Dale J. Ream has the knowledge, resources, and diligence to advise and guide clients in intellectual property matters. He's available to discuss your unique situation and enlighten you about the differences between patents, trademarks, and copyrights, as well as the protections they offer. Ream Law Firm, L.L.C. proudly serves clients in Kansas City, Missouri, and throughout the KC metro area, including Johnson County, Kansas, and Jackson County, Missouri.
Protecting Intellectual Property
Every year, original works of authorship are created, including movies, music, computer software, books, research, and architecture. Likewise, companies also create new products or invent novel solutions. Thankfully, intellectual property tools offer you ways to protect your company's name, logo, inventions, creative ideas, content, and original creations.
Protecting intellectual property often requires different procedures. Here are some common types of intellectual property - trademarks, patents, and copyrights – with examples and a brief explanation of the protections they offer.
A trademark is an intellectual property tool that protects the brand names, words, designs, symbols, phrases, and logos that are used on the products and services offered by your business from being registered by others without your permission.
What Protections Does a Trademark Offer?
Trademarks offer the following forms of protection:
Protection from damage of business reputation
Protection from infringement by another business or company
Protection against consumer confusion
Protection from counterfeiting your products and services
Protection for consumers from products or services with unknown sources
What Can Be Trademarked?
You can trademark anything that can be used to distinguish your business, products, and services from those of another business. This includes:
Examples of Trademarks
Here are some common examples of registered trademarks:
The golden arches of McDonald's®
The Nike® logo
Head & Shoulders®
A knowledgeable trademarks lawyer can enlighten you about the benefits of registering a trademark and guide you through every step of the application process.
A patent can be described as an authority, right, or license granted by the federal government to an inventor that gives the inventor the legal rights to exclude other companies from manufacturing, selling, using, or importing the invention for a set period.
Types of Patents
Some common types of patents include:
E-commerce system patents
Electrical engineering patents
Method and process patents
Examples of Patents
Some common examples of patents include:
The electric lightbulb
The internal combustion engine
The maglev (Magnetic Levitation)
An experienced patent attorney can guide you through the application process and help you navigate key decisions.
A copyright is an intellectual property tool used to protect original works of authorship, such as artistic, musical, literary, and dramatic works, as well as other kinds of creative expressions. Copyright prevents other individuals from copying your original works and creative ideas.
What Can Be Protected Using Copyright?
Copyright can be used to protect different original works including, but not limited to:
Computer software and programs
Copyright Owner's Rights
Copyright ownership gives the author or owner of an original work, or the holder of the copyright, six exclusive rights, including:
The right to reproduce and make copies of an original work
The right to display the work publicly
The right to distribute copies to the public by sale or control how the works are transferred to others, such as by lending, sale, lease, or rental
The right to create derivative works based on the original work, such as a sequel or spin-off
The right to perform the work publicly
The right to perform sound recordings publicly through digital audio transmission
If you want to apply for a patent, trademark, or copyright, or if your protected works were used without your permission or stolen, you need to reach out to an experienced attorney right away. A skilled IP law attorney can help you sue for damages, pursue claims, and attempt to recover the financial compensation that you deserve.
Turn to Ream Law Firm, L.L.C. for Skilled Legal Guidance
Navigating intellectual property matters involving patents, trademarks, or copyrights often involves a lot of complexities. Dale J. Ream is committed to offering comprehensive legal guidance and reliable advocacy to clients in intellectual property-related matters, including patents, trademarks, trade secrets, and copyrights. Using his in-depth legal understanding, he can educate you about how each intellectual property tool works and guide you through every legal phase involved in your application from start to finish.
Contact Ream Law Firm, L.L.C. today to schedule a simple consultation with a knowledgeable IP law attorney. Dale J. Ream can offer you the detailed legal counsel and strong advocacy you need to navigate key decisions regarding your intellectual property matters. The firm proudly serves clients in Kansas City, Missouri, and throughout the KC metro area, including Johnson County, Kansas, and Jackson County, Missouri.