Trademark-Design Patent Overlap

INTRODUCTION:  This article explores the trademark-design patent overlap.  The maker of a new product or service wants to distinguish its goods/services from the competition.  A distinctive style of a product, identifying the maker or source of the product, can be valuable intellectual property.  Note I have previously written on the distinctions between trademarks and patents. …

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WHAT IS A TRADEMARK?

Introduction What is a trademark?  Basically, a trademark is exactly what it says it is; a “mark” used in “trade” to distinguish the goods of the trademark owner from the goods of others. For services, the term is (not surprisingly) “service mark”. A mark may be a symbol, design or word. Frequently a mark is…

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PERSONAL NAME TRADEMARKS

Introduction People are proud of their workmanship and service. Accordingly, it is natural that people want to name their products and services with their name, e.g., Ford automobiles, Hewlett Packard printers, etc.  I suggest this is not, however, a good strategy for establishing a brand.  As I continuously urge, the best trademarks are arbitrary words and symbols.  Coined words…

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