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  1. #1


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    Question Copyright or Trademark?? For a Graphic logo I designed for my Company....
    so a search on google just makes things more "Gray" and obscure so i thought id ask u guys

    ive created a graphic logo.... would a trademark or a copyright be best for this?

    i read that if you have a company slogan or a unique company name you should trademark it ...but how about a graphic design logo?

    why would someone pick a copyright over a trademark it seems like a trademark is more comprehensive? someone correct me if im wrong please

  2. #2


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    Quote Originally Posted by MacNewbie View Post
    so a search on google just makes things more "Gray" and obscure so i thought id ask u guys

    ive created a graphic logo.... would a trademark or a copyright be best for this?

    i read that if you have a company slogan or a unique company name you should trademark it ...but how about a graphic design logo?

    why would someone pick a copyright over a trademark it seems like a trademark is more comprehensive? someone correct me if im wrong please
    Doesn't Copyright mean you own the content as well as the design and trademark just mean you own the image as its your brand or a brand you designed the image for.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Copyright

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trademark

  3. #3

    Shikarnov's Avatar
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    Generally speaking, you'd trademark a graphic mark in order to protect your [client's?] identity.

  4. #4

    louishen's Avatar
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    A logo would generally come under copyright law
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  5. #5


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    okay so one person saying trademark it
    another saying copyright it

    and another saying

    "Doesn't Copyright mean you own the content as well as the design and trademark just mean you own the image as its your brand or a brand you designed the image for"

    whichi s basically the same thing????

    now im even more confused.

    any1 else? lol

  6. #6

    Kash's Avatar
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    It definitely falls under copyright as it is a creative work. Now, if you created it for a client who specifically requested to keep all rights to the logo (i.e. work-for-hire), in that case your client owns the copyright and not you.

    Copyright protection gives you a whole slew of protections. Plus, it lasts the entire life of the copyright owner, plus an additional 70 years. Benefit of copyright is that it's ridiculously simple to obtain one.

    A trademark is a symbol used by a person in commerce to indicate the source of the goods/service. Your graphic logo could also fall under trademark if it identifies a company that sells a good or service. Some examples of companies that have trademarked logos: Apple (both the name and the bitten apple), Coca-Cola, Nike (both the name and the swoosh), and eBay.

    However, unlike copyright, you have to register a trademark. There are a variety of steps involved and the application costs money. Then on top of that, you have to enforce your trademark, otherwise you run the risk of losing your trademark.

    Oh and I should mention, I'm a third year law student specializing in Intellectual Property

    June 2007
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  7. #7


    Member Since
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    You know what's interesting? That words have specific meanings.

    You could have easily discovered the difference between "copyrighting" something and "trademarking" something simply by looking up what those words actually mean in either a dictionary or the online equivalent thereof. Or Wikipedia for that matter.

    Indeed, I typed in "what's the difference between copyright and trademark" into Google and look what happened:
    What Is the Difference Between a Copyright, Trademark, and Patent?

    Whaddya know. First hit. Followed by 30 more just like it.

    These are the days of miracle and wonder.

  8. #8

    TattooedMac's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MacNewbie View Post
    why would someone pick a copyright over a trademark it seems like a trademark is more comprehensive? someone correct me if im wrong please
    Quote Originally Posted by chas_m View Post
    You could have easily discovered the difference between "copyrighting" something and "trademarking" something simply by looking up what those words actually mean in either a dictionary or the online equivalent thereof. Or Wikipedia for that matter.


    Yes they could have. They tried and failed.
    Quote Originally Posted by MacNewbie View Post
    so a search on google just makes things more "Gray" and obscure so i thought id ask u guys

    That is why they posted the question here.
    Isnt this the main reason as to why we have forums ?? To ask those questions that *once GOOGLED* and still dont have the answer you want ....... Yadda Yadda Yadda ??

    I think so anyways ....
    Oh sh1t hang on, i might google that and get a answer than ask you guys ....
    Dont forget to use the Reputation System if someone has helped you out !!!
    Arguing with a zealot is only slightly easier than tunneling through a mountain with your forehead!!!!!
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  9. #9

    schweb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MacNewbie View Post
    okay so one person saying trademark it
    another saying copyright it

    and another saying

    "Doesn't Copyright mean you own the content as well as the design and trademark just mean you own the image as its your brand or a brand you designed the image for"

    whichi s basically the same thing????

    now im even more confused.

    any1 else? lol
    Ok here's the best advice you're going to get...

    If this is for a business and you're serious about protecting it, consult an intellectual property attorney.

    The rules vary by jurisdiction and the best option may depend on what the logo is as well as how it's used and what industry you're in. They can also keep you out of trouble trying to register something that can't be protected.

    In the end, relying on an answer someone gives you here in this forum for something like trademarking or copywriting your IP isn't really smart.
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  10. #10


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    Quote Originally Posted by schweb View Post
    Ok here's the best advice you're going to get...

    If this is for a business and you're serious about protecting it, consult an intellectual property attorney.

    The rules vary by jurisdiction and the best option may depend on what the logo is as well as how it's used and what industry you're in. They can also keep you out of trouble trying to register something that can't be protected.

    In the end, relying on an answer someone gives you here in this forum for something like trademarking or copywriting your IP isn't really smart.

    I am 18 years old. i am a broke student.

    i can't really afford an intellectual property lawyer so i have to make an educated decision based on info i find online.

  11. #11


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    Quote Originally Posted by chas_m View Post
    You know what's interesting? That words have specific meanings.

    You could have easily discovered the difference between "copyrighting" something and "trademarking" something simply by looking up what those words actually mean in either a dictionary or the online equivalent thereof. Or Wikipedia for that matter.

    Indeed, I typed in "what's the difference between copyright and trademark" into Google and look what happened:
    What Is the Difference Between a Copyright, Trademark, and Patent?

    Whaddya know. First hit. Followed by 30 more just like it.

    These are the days of miracle and wonder.

    thanks for your very sarcastic and facetious "help".

    your article is pretty much the same as every other article ive read online...

    it's completely overlapping and vague.

    they say with a copyright u can write an article and copyright your writing, but it wont prevent someone from writing about the same subject.

    Okay?

    so contrarily if you were to trademark your article does that mean nobody else can write about the same subject?

    it also says if you register a trademark for a logo/name for a certain product it cannot prevent other companies from making that same product under a different name.....

    Okay?

    so contrarily if you were to copyright your logo/name does that meananother company can make the same product under a different name but with the same logo?


    I feel like these articles are written to generate ad dollars for the hosting site by people who search for "copyright vs trademark" and are not actually deisgned to help people.... the articles are not really clear & still leaves many many many gray areas..

    thats why i posted on the forum.

    if everyone used google instead of posting on the forums there would be no forum have you ever thought about that?

    okay.

  12. #12


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    Quote Originally Posted by Kash View Post
    It definitely falls under copyright as it is a creative work. Now, if you created it for a client who specifically requested to keep all rights to the logo (i.e. work-for-hire), in that case your client owns the copyright and not you.

    Copyright protection gives you a whole slew of protections. Plus, it lasts the entire life of the copyright owner, plus an additional 70 years. Benefit of copyright is that it's ridiculously simple to obtain one.

    A trademark is a symbol used by a person in commerce to indicate the source of the goods/service. Your graphic logo could also fall under trademark if it identifies a company that sells a good or service. Some examples of companies that have trademarked logos: Apple (both the name and the bitten apple), Coca-Cola, Nike (both the name and the swoosh), and eBay.

    However, unlike copyright, you have to register a trademark. There are a variety of steps involved and the application costs money. Then on top of that, you have to enforce your trademark, otherwise you run the risk of losing your trademark.

    Oh and I should mention, I'm a third year law student specializing in Intellectual Property

    Thank you very very much for your insightful post!

    Since ur a law student maybe you will know the answer to this...

    1.) you say "A trademark is a symbol used by a person in commerce to indicate the source of the goods/service" ....doesnt a copyright fall under this definition as well? if i copyright my logo doesn't this indicate that this logo is mine and won't a copyright prevent other companies or people from replicating my logo or anything that even bears resemblance to my logo to sell their products?


    2.) are you saying that copyright cannot be used in commerce? in short is trademark for = a big company and copyright= a small company???

    Im still very confused if you can clear this up for me because it still seems to me that there is alot of overlap

  13. #13


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    Quote Originally Posted by MacNewbie View Post
    I am 18 years old. i am a broke student.

    i can't really afford an intellectual property lawyer so i have to make an educated decision based on info i find online.
    Ok, in this case copyright is the answer. Trademark are something more related to big brand names

  14. #14

    schweb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MacNewbie View Post
    I am 18 years old. i am a broke student.

    i can't really afford an intellectual property lawyer so i have to make an educated decision based on info i find online.
    Well unfortunately, that's the only way you know you've done it right. Everywhere you live the rules are different, every business type is different, every piece of IP is different.

    If you're only 18 and don't have enough for a lawyer, I'm going to go out on a limb and say whatever it is you're trying to do is probably not worth the time or trouble at this point to go through the hassle.

    If your idea is so wonderful that it is worth it, find someone to invest money for you to see a lawyer.
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  15. #15


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    Quote Originally Posted by chas_m View Post
    Whaddya know. First hit. Followed by 30 more just like it.

    These are the days of miracle and wonder.
    Quit being like that ok. It's just not needed. If you want to help, sure help the person. If not then don't. But don't help and add in some snide remarks like this. From my point of view it's just rude and uncalled for.

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