Naomie Christensen: Doing Business

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Doing Business

Knowing about trademark is important. Self-publishing books and creating small businesses is growing in popularity, because it establishes Artists as having an audience for their work. Artists also use nom de plumes similarly to trademarks. Protecting intellectual property with registration is ultimately important, yet branding is important when developing an online presence and networking in a local community.

The business world is competitive, so create a paper trail. All of my blog titles are protected. I trademark each one before beginning a blog. While they are trademarked trademarks have unique differences than registration and copyright.

A trademark is the specific title of a business entity to sell products and services. Trademarks are arbitrary or fanciful, suggestive, descriptive, or generic. Sometimes a fanciful trademark like Kleenex becomes generic. Kleenex is a trademark even though it became a generic name for tissues. Using the trademark in common references is fine; yet do not name a company Kleenex especially when manufacturing tissues.

Next is the level of importance of brand or trademark in relation to identifying a product or service. Anyone can trademark one or a handful of words. These words only qualify as a trademark when utilized to identify or promote a profit or nonprofit business. This means people have to associate a product or service to the name and something was sold or gained with the trademark. Even a penny verifies a trademark.

Over-the-years I have thought of various trademarks. The only ones that count are the ones in use. Unlike a registration, even though thinking of it, until something is sold or an audience is established anyone may use the trademark. Trademarks expire and become available unless one of these qualifying events occurs. If nothing is sold anyone can use it. In issues of copyright, when a copyright expires and artists can resell the registration to another company; however, another company cannot buy the copyright from the previous owner of the copyright, because it is still the property of the original artist. An unused trademark becomes nothing more than a brainstorming exercise.

I have made money from Google and a check was deposited in my bank to prove earning in relation to my BlogSpot titles and YouTube account. It is my brand for people to find my products and services. Some blog are not as popular and testing the rule of a penny protecting my rights to the trademark. It is important to keep the trademark, because I do not want to have to constantly change my domain name or trademarks. This makes it difficult for readers to find the site in the future.

Any potential trademark is completely available in the information cloud. I perform a rough search of the internet to ensure the uniqueness of a trademark before registration. Even this blog “Mine Artistic” was registered in a common database in August 2009. The first post was in March 2009, yet I do not remember performing a basic search to find out if it was already in use. In addition, I just wanted to change the title. Now that the site is attracting an audience it is much more important to keep “Mine Artistic” as the title.

Returning to creating a paper trail, I still register trademarks in a common database before beginning a blog or business venture regardless of making money. Some might want to wait until making money, yet the internet is vast and it is becoming increasingly difficult to meet everyone reading the contents of a webpage.

Do not trademark everything in the universe; however, if planning on making money register the trademark before finding out if it will be a worthwhile venture. Writers, Artists and Musicians need professionalism to make the internet better. People might feel disconnected from the rest of the world while at home in the privacy of their living room or bedroom; however, events on the internet are the same as real life. If in question about trademark, registration or copyright paperwork provides the evidence for legal protection.

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