THE ANNALS OF TRADEMARK NUMBER 1 « Law Offices of Timothy Bowles | Top Employment Law Firm in Los Angeles


What is a Trademark?

Trademark can be confused with copyright. As we have explained in recent blogs, a copyright protects works that one creates. A trademark is a word, group of words, symbol or logo a person or company uses to distinguish their products from those of others. A word, symbol, etc. used to distinguish someone’s services from others is a service mark.

Trademarks and service marks are also commonly referred to as “brands.” “Coca-Cola” thus stands to distinguish one company’s cola beverage from those produced by others, including of course “Pepsi-Cola.” Cola connoisseur and average citizen alike can rightfully expect Coke’s and Pepsi’s distinctive trademarks to guide him or her to the preferred beverage. One associates a particular taste with one company and another taste with its competitor because both enterprises have spent millions over the years protecting respective brands to identify their respective products exclusively. The right to control such a brand gives its owner the power to bar anyone else from using that trademark to identify its own rival product.

Trademarks, along with other intellectual property, can be the most valuable assets your business will own. We will address in coming weeks the extent of trademark rights, how one acquires a trademark, how one protects it, and related issues. Contact Helena Kobrin of our office on such matters.

Helena Kobrin, October 16, 2014