What is the difference between copyright and trademark?

Blog Title Media (9) Copyright and Trademarks are both legal protection for your business, but they are very different in their protection of your assets.

What is it?

Copyright is a bundle of economic rights that protects items that have been “authored” such as works of art, photos, pictures, graphic designs, drawings and other forms of images, songs, music and sound recordings of all kinds; books, manuscripts, publications and other written works; and plays, movies, shows, and other performance arts.

How is it protected?

In some countries like Australia, it is not necessary to register copyright, it is automatic. In others, like the USA, UK and Canada, it is possible to register copyright and some places it has been recommended for evidential reasons in potential litigation, but it is voluntary in most places.

Check where you are, but in most countries, copyright in published works generally lasts for the life of the author plus 70 years! Copyright is signified by the symbol ©. Copyright is a complex area of law and so, as much as I would love to say it is as simple as this summary, it is not. Trademarks offer protection to things that distinguish goods and services from each other, such as logos or names -  for example, Apple or the image of the apple with a bite out of it. Trademarks can be extend from a letter, number, word, phrase, sound, smell, shape, logo, picture and/or aspect of packaging. Trademarks are valuable assets for a business, particularly when the business has built a reputation that is recognisable by a name or an image.

Trademarks are signified by the sign ™ until registration has been finalised or rejected. After Trademarks have been “registered” the ™ then becomes ® If a trademark is rejected, it is not legal to continue to use the symbol ™. A registered trade mark is legally enforceable and gives a business owner exclusive rights to use, licence or sell it commercially for the goods and/or services that it is registered under.

All trademarks are registered depending on “classification,” classification is internationally standardised.

Trademarks attract a fee for registration for 10 years. It is possible in many countries to register trademarks within your own country and then gain a form of international protection for protections in countries that have signed the The World Intellectual Property Organization Copyright Treaty. You can continue to keep the registration going as long as fees are current. Resources:

AUSTRALIA

FOR TRADEMARKS -

https://www.ipaustralia.gov.au/trade-marks/applying-for-a-trade-mark/searching-trade-marks

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

FOR COPYRIGHT - http://www.copyright.gov/

FOR TRADEMARKS - http://www.uspto.gov/

CANADA FOR COPYRIGHT http://www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/cipointernet-internetopic.nsf/eng/h_wr00003.html

FOR TRADEMARKS

http://www.ic.gc.ca/eic/site/cipointernet-internetopic.nsf/eng/h_wr00002.html

UNITED KINGDOM

FOR TRADEMARKS

https://www.gov.uk/search-for-trademark