Whether it is a new brand concept, a technological invention or a new publication, all businesses should look to protect its original creations. These creations are known as intellectual property and they can be protected with patents, trademarks and copyrights. What are the differences between these three types of intellectual property and how can businesses make use of them to protect their creations?
A patent refers to the safeguarding of an original invention. Inventions that can be protected by patents include a new process, product, or improvement to an existing piece of technology. Granted by IP offices around the world, a patent is an incentive that encourages companies to develop unique and beneficial products and services. In exchange for disclosing how the invention works, the owner of the patent is granted the exclusive rights to the invention. An important thing to note about patents is that they need to be considered novel, or new, when the patent application is made. As such, disclosing your invention to the public before making the application could be detrimental to your chances of getting a patent. The duration of protection for patents is up to 20 years.
A trademark is a mark that is used by businesses in the course of trade, or commercial activity, to differentiate its products from those of its competitors. Common types of trademarks include company names, brand names and logos that are used on your products, advertisements and signboards. Without trademarks, your customers would have a difficult recognizing your products or services. As your brand grows, your trademarks will gain more and more recognition and brand value. As such, your trademarks sit at the heart of all your branding and marketing strategies and is an asset you definitely want to protect.
By registering your trademark, you will gain the exclusive rights to your brand name or logo, and you will be able to stop another party from using a similar or identical trademark to yours. In most countries, trademark registration lasts for 10 years and is renewable every 10 years subsequently. Out of all the different types of intellectual property, trademark registrations are the only rights that has no limit to the duration of protection.
Copyright protects works such as books, artworks and music lyrics that are expressed in tangible form. In many countries around the world including Singapore, there is no registration process for copyright. Once the work has been created, the work would be protected under copyright laws. Furthermore, if your work was created in Singapore, it would be protected in any country that is party to the TRIPS agreement.
The length of protection of copyright depends on the type of work being protected. However, it is generally protected for the lifetime of the creator of the work, plus an additional 70 years after the death of the author.
It is important to understand the relevant type of intellectual property in order for businesses to protect their creations. At Cat and Pillar, we are experts at assisting business with their trademark registration needs.
We will ensure that your brand is protected by helping you register a trademark in Singapore and any other country your business wishes to enter. All you need to do is fill in our online form with your relevant details and we will handle the rest. For more information on the trademark registration and online trademark renewal services in Singapore, you can visit our website at https://www.catandpillar.com/.
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Introduction to Trademarks
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