Trademark Myths: What You Need to Know

There are many myths and misconceptions about trademarks. Here are a few of the most common:

  • Myth: I don’t need to register my trademark if I’m not selling my products or services online.

Fact: Trademarks can be infringed offline as well as online. If you use a trademark in commerce, you should register it to protect your rights.

  • Myth: I can’t register a trademark that is already in use by someone else.

Fact: You can register a trademark that is already in use by someone else if you can show that your use of the trademark is not likely to cause confusion with the other user’s trademark.

  • Myth: I can register a trademark for anything I want.

Fact: There are certain things that cannot be registered as trademarks, such as generic terms, descriptive terms, and slogans.

  • Myth: Once I register my trademark, I have exclusive rights to it forever.

Fact: Trademark rights are registered for a limited period of time. You must renew your trademark registration every 10 years to maintain your rights.

  • Myth: I can’t use someone else’s trademark if I use it in a different way.

Fact: Even if you use someone else’s trademark in a different way, you may still be infringing on their rights if your use is likely to cause confusion.

It is important to understand the facts about trademarks so that you can protect your rights and avoid infringement. If you have any questions about trademarks, you should consult with an attorney.

Here are some additional tips for avoiding trademark myths:

  • Do your research: Before you choose a trademark, do a thorough search to make sure it is not already in use.
  • Get help from an attorney: If you are unsure about whether a trademark is available or if it is likely to be infringed, you should consult with an attorney. Please call WINTER LLP if you have any questions about your trademark.
  • Register your trademark: Once you have chosen a trademark, you should register it with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
  • Use your trademark properly: Once you have registered your trademark, you should use it properly in all of your marketing materials and on your products and services.
  • Monitor your trademark: You should monitor your trademark for any potential infringement. If you believe that your trademark is being infringed, you should take legal action immediately.
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