You may not be fully in tuned with the true expanse of the definition of intellectual property. The influx of technology into the world’s daily routine has created a new platform for innovation.
As a result of this shift, business has had to find new ways to facilitate the protection of unique creations in an array of areas. Music, video, literary works, graphical designs, and even architectural designs are all considered intellectual property.
Delve into the term a bit more, and check out a quick description of four types of intellectual property protection that will safeguard your ingenuity. Make sure that your great ideas and crafty creations remain yours with the proper IP protection.
When you think of a trademark, consider various words, symbols, colors, sounds, or smells a business uses in tandem with their products or services. A few notable examples of popular trademarks include the “Just Do It!” tagline, the Apple apple, and the golden arches of McDonald’s.
Trademark the most pivotal elements of your business, but make sure that your trademark is recognized nationwide. Register your trademark properly with the United States Patent and Trademark Office.
Copyrights are used to protect your creative pieces which are expressed in a tangible form. Songs, poems, paintings, sculptures, and photographs are all examples of intellectual property which can be secured with a legal copyright.
File your registration for a particular work you have created with the United States Copyright Office. The paperwork you receive will be your assurance, should anyone try to claim your works as their own.
Some people may suggest that you do an old-fashioned copyright, and mail a copy of the work to yourself. The postmark on the envelope serves as legal evidence that you own the creation, but this method is archaic and may not stand up in a court of law.
Patents are typically used to protect the creator’s rights over an invention. Software programs, machines, electronics, and things such as pharmaceuticals are all inventions that can be protected by a legal patent.
To be patent-eligible, you have to have more than just an idea. For example, the transporter from Star Trek isn’t patented, because there’s no way to actually build and use the machine. Your big idea has to come to fruition to be patent worthy.
Trade secrets are the valuable information needed to recreate a very unique product. The Coca Cola recipe, KFC’s original recipe, and even sales methods and business plans are all considered secrets of the trade.
The information needed to recreate these well-known products is invaluable to the brand, and it would be extremely detrimental for the information to become public. Trade secret protections keep these pieces of info private.