What Is A Trademark? - The Full Guide

What Is A Trademark? - The Full Guide
Written by: - Phil Baker

A trademark is a word, phrase or design that identifies the source of goods and services in such a way as to distinguish them from other products or services. It can be used on packaging, labels, signs or any other means of advertising. The owner of a trademark has exclusive rights over its use. If someone else uses your mark without permission, you may have grounds for an infringement claim.

Trademarks are registered with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO). They are also filed with the state where they were first applied for registration. For example, if you register your trademark in California, you must file it with the Secretary of State of California. You will need to pay a fee to do this.

Trademarks are not patents. Patents protect inventions. In order to obtain a patent, you must invent something new and useful. Trademarks are simply words, phrases or designs that identify the source of goods and/or services.

Also read: Trademark a Name


How Do I Register My Trademark?

You should start by searching the USPTO's online database of trademarks. This is called “trademark search”. You can find out if anyone else is using your trademark. You can also check whether your trademark application was accepted or rejected. You can also request copies of applications filed by others.

If you believe another person is infringing upon your trademark, you can file a complaint with the USPTO. You can also send a letter requesting that the infringer stop using your trademark. You may want to contact a lawyer about filing a lawsuit against the infringer.

If you decide to pursue legal action against an alleged infringer, you will need to hire a lawyer to help you prepare your case. Your attorney will need to determine whether the defendant is liable for trademark infringement. He or she will then draft a complaint and submit it to a court.

Also read: What is Commercial Insurance?


What Are Some Examples Of Trademarks?

Here are some examples of trademarks:

  1. Coca-Cola® – Coca-Cola Company

  2. Nike® – Nike Inc.

  3. McDonald's® – McDonald's Corporation

  4. Disney® – Walt Disney Co.

  5. Apple® – Apple Inc.

  6. Google® – Alphabet Inc.

  7. Starbucks® – Starbucks Corp.

  8. Microsoft® – Microsoft Corp.

  9. Amazon® – Amazon.com

  10. Facebook® – Facebook Inc.

  11. Twitter® – Twitter Inc.

  12. YouTube® – Google LLC

  13. Instagram® – Instagram Inc.

  14. Pinterest® – Pinterest Inc.

business paper

What Is The Difference Between A Trademark And Copyright?

Copyright protects original works of authorship fixed in tangible form. Copyright law applies only to artistic creations and literary works. It does not apply to ideas, facts or concepts. Copyright protection lasts for a limited time, after which the work enters the public domain.

In comparison, trademarks are words, phrases or designs used to identify the source of goods or services. They are owned by their owners and cannot enter the public domain. Once a trademark becomes famous enough, it can become part of the common language.

A trademark is distinct from copyright because it is not intended to prevent others from copying the work. Instead, it is meant to identify the origin of the product or service.

Also read: Make a Business Plan


Can Someone Steal My Trademark?

Yes! There are several ways that people can steal your trademark. One way is to copy it without permission. Another way is to use it as a generic term for many products or services.

Another way is to sell counterfeit goods under your trademark. Counterfeit goods include knockoffs of designer clothing, handbags, shoes and other items. These counterfeits often look exactly like the real thing, but they do not have the same quality.

Another example is when someone uses your trademark on a website or social media page without your consent. If this happens, you could take action against the owner of the site.

Also read: What Is A Sole Proprietorship?


Is My Trademark Registered With The U.S. Patent Office?

You should make sure that your trademark is registered with the USPTO before you file any lawsuits. Otherwise, you might lose valuable rights to your trademark.


What Can Be Trademarked?

Trademarking is possible for almost anything. For instance, you can trademark a business name, a logo, a slogan, a color scheme, a sound, a song, a dance, a movie title, a book title, a TV show title, a computer program, a software application, a video game, a cartoon character, a toy, a food item, a musical instrument, a piece of jewellery, a hairstyle, a typeface, a brand of cigarettes, a type of car, a sports team, a building, a company, a magazine, a newspaper, a television channel, a radio station, a restaurant, a department store, a hotel, a hospital, a bank, a credit card, a sporting event, or a political party.

If you want to protect your trademark, you must register it first. You can register your trademark through the USPTO’s online system. Registering your trademark will give you legal standing to sue anyone who tries to infringe upon your trademark.

Also read: What is an LLC?


How Long Does A Trademark Last?

The length of time a trademark remains valid depends on how much money you spend promoting your trademark. In general, if you spend more than $1 million over five years, then your trademark will remain protected for 20 years. If you spend less than $25,000 over five years, then you may be able to keep your trademark for 15 years.

However, there are some exceptions to these rules. For example, if you create an internet-based trademark, then the trademark will expire after 10 years. Also, if you start using your trademark in commerce within one year of registering it, then your trademark will last only 5 years.

man on ipad


To conclude, a trademark is simply a word, phrase, symbol, design, image, sound, or combination thereof that identifies the source of the good or service being sold. It also helps consumers recognize the source of the product or service so that they know what they are buying.

Still, if you want to ensure that your business stays ahead of its competition, registering and trademarking the name of your business is an essential step. If you also run a business and need to create reliable check stubs then you can rely on our check stub generator.

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