The difference between trademark copyright and patent [Fact-Checked]

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Last updated : Aug 25, 2022
Written by : Roberto Flecther
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The difference between trademark copyright and patent

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The difference between trademark copyright and patent

Comment by Julie Lamer

hey welcome today's video I'm Rick chapel with dmca agent service comm so today we're taking a look at copyright vs. trademark vs. patent this is an area where there could be some confusion so hopefully stepping back and looking at these three main categories of intellectual property will help you understand each one so start with copyright copyright is the right to exploit a work of authorship original authorship actually and so let's just look at the classic example the Harry Potter books so JK Rowling decides to write another Harry Potter book when she finishes she's automatically granted what's known as common law copyright now this form of copyright is pretty weak so she's actually one ago gonna want to go ahead and register with Copyright Office to get a stronger form and if she does that within 90 days she's granted additional rights under copyright law and so she's going to do that now once she has that in place you know how is she going to exploit that work of authorship well for an author their traditional approach would be to work with a publisher she would sign a contract with a publishing house and she would give that publishing house the right to make copies and sell her book and in exchange she would get a healthy advance and royalties on each sale and so in that scenario she has exploited her original authorship under copyright law now obviously she can do it in other ways too she can sign a deal with the movie production company to turn the book into a movie maybe audio books you know there are different approaches to exploiting that authorship but again we're gonna give the person who took the time and effort to come up with this creative work the right to quite frankly make some money off of it now there are cases where people don't make money off of it if you look at open source software for instance people will create it just as you know a good goodwill effort as part of the online community or something of that sort but you know generally we're talking about exploiting it for some type of financial benefit the original work of authorship of course doesn't have to be a book it can be anything that's creative software code images music there's a variety of different areas so if you're interested in looking at those you can go the Copyright Office website and they have actually some what are called circulars which give you a pretty good idea of you know the different things so again we're talking about the right to exploit a work of original authorship a trademark is a word phrase or symbol that distinguishes a source of goods for consumers okay this is really important so what we're talking about is basically giving consumers confidence that when they see a particular word phrase or symbol that the goods that are being sold under that word phrase or symbol have a certain quality so let's talk about tires okay well how about Goodyear okay we all know Goodyear tires and you have a particular opinion regarding the quality of those tires that you associate with Goodyear and so when you see the Goodyear name where you see the could dear little flying foot thing the symbol you know you know okay that's good you associate that and so maybe you buy it maybe you don't doesn't really matter but you have that confidence that when you see that name and that symbol you know what you're getting now if another you know cheesy cheese ball company in China you know puts together some really you know horrible quality tires and they call them Goodyear good years let's say that an S to the end of it you know at that point you know are you going to be able to recognize that hey this is different companies a Chinese company and maybe they're making you know crappy tires that are gonna blow up after a couple miles you know they're gonna be a much lower quality and so for consumers you know that could be confusing and in trademark law when we have a trademark infringement claim that's exactly what is alleged that one company has you know used a word phrase or symbol that is so close to the trademark of another company that's causing confusion for consumers so a trademark is a word phrase or symbol that distinguishes the source of goods let's use another example if you see a swooosh symbol kind of that round teardrop bending up symbol you are almost immediately going to associate it with Nike that's their their symbol and everybody kind of knows what it is and so if you aren't in sports apparel or something of that sort and you see that well you expect a certain level of quality you're buying a Nike product again you may think it's great you know it's terrible you know whatever but you have confidence that when you see that symbol you're getting you know whatever it is that you expect and if you got something radically different well that would cause all kinds of problems in the consumer market because people wouldn't be able to trust in the quality that they you know they thought they were getting when they were buying something so that's a trademark now patents patents are something kind of entirely different a patent is the right to exclusively exploit an invention and so what we're talking about here is actually fairly broad because people are really creative so there are a lot of different types of patents that can be patents for processes different types of machines all kinds of different things and really frankly you'd probably want to talk to a patent attorney at some point if you're getting anywhere near you know issues related patents but basically the idea here is that if somebody invents something it's unique and something new then we're going to give that person the right to exploit it much like in copyright you know the author has the right to exploit the book they just wrote so we're gonna give them the right to exploit that invention for the certain period of time or rather lengthy period of time and the reason we're going to do that is because we want to promote inventions we want people to go out and invent things and if there was no patent protection well you know why would people go out and invent things there there would be much less emphasis to do so much less motivation to do so because here's what would happen I would go out and let's say I invent something some form of software that works it's gonna revolutionize the online market and I put up my crappy little website and I launch it and I've got you know my entire capital budget for launching this business is the $400 I have of my Capital One credit card okay well Google happens to run across my website and you know a week after I launched it and they take a look at the product and they say wow this is amazing this is gonna revolutionize everything and so they buy the product from me for $199 and then they just reverse engineer it and make their own copy and go out and sell it now who's going to win that battle me or Google and you know the cold hard truth is Google has billions of dollars I have four hundred dollars I think we know how that's going to go not well for me so with patents you know we're going to give that exclusivity to the invention to exploit th

Thanks for your comment Julie Lamer, have a nice day.
- Roberto Flecther, Staff Member

Comment by Marty

in this video we will discuss copyrights patents and trademarks the differences between them the advantages they have reasons why you need to know about them some of the things that can go right and wrong with them copyright is easy you can create a copyrighted work instantly you don't need a lawyer you don't need a filing fee it's a simple matter when you take a photograph with your phone record something with your phone film or audio it's copyrighted from the moment of creation for copyright all you need is it has to be original and has to be fixed in a tangible medium of expression it's very simple we create copyrighted works all day for a copyright you don't have to send it to Washington you don't have to pay anything there were advantages to registering your copyright in Washington with the Library of Congress is where the United States copyright office is located there are reasons you should register your work but it's protected from the moment of creation if you wrote a song and you want to put it on YouTube I think you should do it immediately as soon as you think it's you want anyone to hear it it is protected if you register it with the Copyright Office it'll take months but you're protected before it even becomes officially registered trademarks are important because they distinguish goods from each other and services from each other some of the issues with that again you have to think you don't want to confuse the consumer of course everyone knows Apple they sat in 1919 mid 1970s and they wanted to trademark that name there was a problem right away with them getting a trademark because the Beatles who were more famous in the late 60s created Apple and they meant Apple music and Apple Records Apple publishing their company was Apple so when these guys in California Steve Jobs wanted a trademark on Apple the Beatles were concerned but the everyone talked about this and say well this won't cause confusion because Apple Computer said well we do computers we don't doom you so there's no issue how could you there'll be no confusion when the Beatles saw that and fine it went on until output computers get into music and then there was okay now there's a problem because when Apple computers were created of course computers originally weren't considered to be fun there were things for work in computations so that had to be worked out so that both companies could stay as Apple to get a trademark you'll have to have a fee of about $290 you'll have to pay it's an extensive application process you definitely need a lawyer you have to do a search of trademarks to make sure yours isn't too close to something or the color or your logo and so forth that's pretty complicated you have to have a lawyer a trademark lawyer patents are inventions there are three kinds of patents there is a patent call a utility patent that's what you normally think of something that's useful if you go to Starbucks the insulating sleeves it's on the cup so you won't burn your hand that's that's a patent the lid on the cup is a patent because of how it's designed the the type of hole in it the reservoir where the other coffee goes and so forth those utility pens a design patent is some design that you want to protect a patent lasts for 20 years so there's a utility patent a design patent and the third patent is a plant patent meaning you're crossing one type of plant with another for some scientific reasons and a lot of medicines come from plants so plant patents have been around since 1930 they're extremely important in like the other two they last for 20 years to get a patent it's insanely complicated you need probably $20,000 at the minimum you have to do six tensive searches you need a patent attorney who's much different than any other kind of attorney it's a higher level of expertise but you have some good advantages by knowing what they are knowing the difference with copyrights patents and trademarks as I mentioned copyrights a very important there at the government backing your work it's your work is copyrighted from the moment of creation it's very important you have the right to exclude others from using your music trademark is something that will identify the origin of goods the recording artist of the band the record label patents can be a process it's very important to know about them know the differences and to be able to use them to your advantage

Thanks Marty your participation is very much appreciated
- Roberto Flecther

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The difference between trademark copyright and patent

The difference between trademark copyright and patent