This is a user generated content for MyStory, a YourStory initiative to enable its community to contribute and have their voices heard. The views and writings here reflect that of the author and not of YourStory.

Have a Brilliant Idea: How to Keep it Safe with Trademark, Patent & Copyright

Monday March 20, 2017,

4 min Read

One of the many great things about internet is that you can find a variety of content online easily and can use it in your own way, however you want and wherever you want. But, sometimes things can get tricky and ugly. You can take anything from anyone, enhance it and make it your own. It’s a very handy feature of the internet when you’re the one who is taking the idea, but it’s troublesome, annoying and very much frustrating when you’re the one who invented that piece or work or idea originally. So, that’s it? Isn’t there anything that we can do to protect our work, protect our idea which we’ve put so much effort into?

As a matter of fact, there are basically 3 terms you need to be familiar with in order to assure that you remain the original author of your own invention. I like to call these the “3 Mantras of content protection”. I know it sounds pretty weird, but believe it or not, these 3 Mantras will save you all from a headache later on.

We’re talking about “Trademark, Patent and Copyright”. These terms may sound a little intimidating or too “legal” right now, but these three terms are very easy to understand and once you get a hang of these, you’ll be thanking yourself for learning about these. Let’s take a look at all these terms to know a little more about them in detail.

What is a Trademark?

A Trademark can be defined as a design, a logo, an expression or anything that resembles an organization or a product belonging to a certain person or a firm or an organization. It is also termed as “Service Marks” sometimes. The very basic breakdown of the term would mean that any kind of mark that distinctly recognizes its owner. You can look at a phone from its backside and tell which company it belongs to. You don’t necessarily need to even look at the whole phone. Just one decent look at the logo printed on that phone can tell you that. And no other company can claim that product as their own, now can they? Just look at the power of a Trademark. It can alone be a deciding factor to a huge extent. But, if you’re just a starter and don’t have much recognition, how would a trademark trace it back to you? Hence, it’s about time you get to know your dear friend “Patent”.

What is a Patent? 

A patent basically means giving all the rights to the owner of that particular invention. Patent prevents anyone from using, copying, modifying or selling that idea/invention without the consent of the actual owner. You need to register your patent with an authority for it to work. You cannot just put your name over that idea and hope everyone will abide by the rules. You need to check with your country’s government sites about that procedure. A simple “How to get a patent in {insert country name}” will yield `to the point` results. A patent is valid for a limited time period — generally 20 years.

What is a Copyright?

You can get a copyright for anything ranging from a books, pamphlets or articles to a musical recording or a website. You automatically secure a copyright for your content, as soon as you create it. Combining the power of these three key elements, you can sit back and relax. Because no one can use your idea without your consent. Getting a Patent and Copyright varies from country to country. The best way to find out is by visiting your country’s government’s website. Registering a Copyright is not necessary, but it just gives you an edge over anyone else. So, it is recommended to get one just to be sure.

This article has been contributed by Pramod Gulati, Content Writer, LegalRaasta — an online platform for IP services such as patent registration, copyright registration, trademark registration etc.