When I first saw today’s one-word prompt, “trademark,” I started seeing those little symbols, like ©, ®, and ™, dancing around in my head. Yeah, I know. I’m weird.
I began to wonder when one uses one versus the others, so, of course, I Googled it. If you couldn’t care less about when to use ©, ®, or ™, or what they mean, you can stop reading now. I won’t be bothered. But if you are the least bit interested….
A trademark is a word, phrase, symbol, and/or design that identifies and distinguishes the source of the goods of one party from those of others. It alerts potential infringers that a term, slogan, logo, or other indicator is being claimed as a trademark. However, the use of TM does not guarantee the owner’s mark will be protected under trademark law.
A registered trademark, however, indicates that the trademark has been registered with the US Patent and Trademark Office. A registered trademark not only deters imitators, it also provides a heavy presumption of ownership in the courts. Woo hoo!
A copyright used with literary works, such as books, photographs, art work, and videos. It offers a person exclusive rights to reproduce, publish, or sell his or her original work of authorship.
How can I put this to practical use? Well, I suppose I could trademark the name of this blog: This, That, and The Other™ so that no one else can use that phrase without my persmission. And I could copyright the actual posts that I have written on this blog and then sue the shit out of anyone who uses my precious words.