- What is a copyright?
- What can be copyrighted?
- How do I copyright a name?
- How do I copyright a business name?
- What are the benefits of copyrighting a name?
- What are the consequences of not copyrighting a name?
- How long does a copyright last?
- How do I renew a copyright?
- What happens if I copyright a name that is already in use?
- I have a copyright, now what?
You may be wondering how to copyright a name for your business. The process is actually quite simple and we’ll outline the steps for you here.
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What is a copyright?
A copyright is a form of intellectual property protection that gives the creator of a work the exclusive right to reproduce, distribute, perform, display, or create derivative works based on that work. Copyrights are granted by the government and typically last for the life of the author plus 70 years.
What can be copyrighted?
Businesses can copyright names, logos, and other identifying marks that distinguish their products or services. However, copyrights only protect the expression of an idea, not the idea itself. So, for example, you could not copyright the name “Joe’s Coffee House,” but you could copyright a logo or other artwork used to identify Joe’s Coffee House.
How do I copyright a name?
You may be able to trademark a name, but not copyright it. Names are not copyrightable unless they are part of a larger work, such as a novel or a computer program. Even then, copyright will only protect the literary or creative expression, not the actual name itself. Trademarks, on the other hand, may be able to protect names used in business. To learn more about trademarks, please see our page on trademarking a name.
How do I copyright a business name?
There are two ways to protect your business name — through trademark registration with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office or through common law rights. Common law rights arise automatically when you use your business name in commerce, but trademark registration provides additional legal protection.
If you want to register your business name as a trademark, you can do so with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The process is fairly simple and it gives you the added legal protection of being able to sue for damages if someone else uses your business name without your permission.
If you don’t want to register your business name as a trademark, you can still protect it under common law principles. Common law rights arise automatically when you use your business name in commerce, and they allow you to sue for damages if someone else uses your business name without your permission. However, common law rights are limited to the geographic area in which you use your business name, so they may not provide full protection if someone uses your business name in another part of the country.
What are the benefits of copyrighting a name?
There are many benefits to copyrighting a name, including the following:
-It gives you exclusive rights to use the name for commercial purposes.
-It can help you protect your brand from being copied or used without permission.
-It can adds value to your business.
-It can help you stop others from using a similar name that could cause confusion among consumers.
What are the consequences of not copyrighting a name?
If you do not copyright a name, you could still bring a trademark infringement action against someone who uses your name without permission, but it would be more difficult to prove that you are the rightful owner of the name and that the other person’s use of it is infringing.
How long does a copyright last?
A copyright gives the owner of a creative work the exclusive right to reproduce, distribute, perform, display, or license that work. Copyright protection lasts for the life of the author plus 70 years.
How do I renew a copyright?
To renew a copyright, you must file a renewal application within a certain time period and pay the renewal fee. For works copyrighted before January 1, 1978, the period is generally 67 years from the date the copyright was originally secured. For works created on or after January 1, 1978, the period is generally 95 years from the date of first publication. The Copyright Office can provide further information about renewing copyrights.
What happens if I copyright a name that is already in use?
If you copyright a name that is already in use, you may be infringing on another person’s trademark. A trademark is a type of intellectual property that protects businesses’ logos, slogans, and other commercial identifiers. You can apply for a trademark with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. If your trademark application is approved, you will have the exclusive right to use the name in connection with your business.
I have a copyright, now what?
You’ve done it! You have a copyright for your business name. But, now what? How do you use your copyright to protect your business name?
The first step is to put the world on notice that you own the copyright in your business name by using the © symbol. Place the © symbol next to your business name on all of your marketing materials, website, and products.
You should also include a copyright notice on all of your materials. A copyright notice is a statement that tells the world that you own the copyright in a particular work. For example, “© 2018 John Doe. All rights reserved.”
While the use of the © symbol and a copyright notice are not required to secure copyright protection, it is generally a good idea to use them. They serve as reminders to others that your business name is protected by copyright law and should not be used without permission.