Trademark Registration With Benefits: Six good onesSeptember 17, 2016
A trademark registration serves as an insurance policy against for brands and businesses online and off. Do you need one for the names of your products or services? The process for obtaining a registered trademark can be confusing and complex. Understanding the benefits of having a trademark registration can help decide if one is right for your business.
Trademark registration provides a shield to prevent others from coming after you when you don’t register. A registered trademark is also a sword that can be used to quickly stop on line poachers without the need for costly litigation.
1. A trademark registration provides notice to the world
A trademark registration is like recording the deed to a house, allowing the owner to kick squatters out quickly and with minimal expense, particularly in the online space where many of the problems occur. A trademark registration provides constructive notice to the world of the trademark owner’s rights. Constructive notice is a concept most people understand when the deed to their house is recorded; the same applies to trademarks. Constructive notice is a legal substitute for actual notice. Actual notice means, “I personally told you.” No one can personally tell everyone in the world of their claim to ownership. As a result, the law allows the owner to record a claim of ownership in a public agency where third parties are responsible for searching the public records to learn of your rights. Constructive notice means ignorance is no defense to choosing the same or a confusingly similar name.
2. Trademark registration and domain hijackers
Does your company also market its services online, or sell products over the Internet? If so, then you probably need a registered trademark. These days, the most common form of business theft of trademarks is infringing domains. Trademark infringement in a domain occurs when a third party uses your trademark or brand name in a URL to offer competing goods or services to yours. This includes sneaky practices such as typosquatting (deliberate misspellings of domains) and diverting traffic to third party sites. There are legal procedures to stop registration of domains containing your trademarks. With a registered trademark these procedures become simple and cost effective. Without a registration, stopping them can be costly and more complex.
3. Google sells trademarks to your competitors
In many industries today, business owners purchase key words for paid search engine results. An ongoing problem is a competitor purchases your trademarks from Google, and uses them to advertise his or her services, not yours. This practice raises the cost to brand owners to advertise their own products since you can be forced to bid against a competitor to use your own trademark in a key word ad campaign. A registration is a tool to force them to stop.