Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Why Every Business Owner Should Know About IP Law

In order to make a true success out of your business, it requires more than just able management and the acquisition of the right talent. You want to make sure that you’re doing what you can to stand out. But, once you do, what’s to stop people from copying the ways in which you stand out? Well, in part, intellectual property law. Here, we’re going to look at some of the aspects of IP law that every business owner should know in order to protect their business from the constant rise of copycats that has always threatened those who have found or made their own success.


What’s unique about your business?

The aspect of the business’s intellectual property that is perhaps the easiest to secure in law are the aspects of it that are truly unique, be they articles or media, such as a logo, branded materials, and so on. Copyrighting your business’s materials means that others cannot use them, outside of the wiggle room allowed by fair use and derivative works, but it stops other businesses from simply copying everything about yours, right down to the logo and advertising materials, for instance. It’s also worth noting that you can actually copyright materials and articles even if you haven’t put them into use, you just have to go through the legal process of copyrighting them as noted by this piece from The Boss Magazine.

Claim your innovations

Sometimes, it’s not super easy to copyright an aspect of your business, even if it is unique. An idea, a piece of technology, a service, or a technique that you have developed in how you do business could be your own distinct creation, but might not be protected by copyright. When it comes to innovating in the business, Zarif Haque has spoken extensively on the importance of using patents to protect what is yours. Technology is, typically, the easiest thing to patent. In cases where another can prove that they independently came up with the thing that you patented, there may be some justification but, otherwise, it’s the patent holder that has control.

Keep your secrets safe

There may be aspects of your business that aren’t exactly wholly unique and aren’t something that you can trademark or patent, but that are still worth protecting. This can include your steps to acquiring and keeping clients, your actual client list, and the like. You may not have a legal right to protect these, as is, but you can make sure that those who would be privy to these trade secrets aren’t able to go around sharing them. One of the key ways to do just that is to have them sign a contract to that effect, such as an NDA. If you have built up knowledge and expertise in an employee, you can also have them sign a non-compete clause so that they can’t take that to a competitor, as well.

IP law is not a perfect protection, you may have to fight to stake your claim on what is yours. But it does provide plenty of tools for businesses to do just that.

9 comments:

  1. these days we need information like this more and more. I help my aunt run her small business and as a soap maker she has had others try to use her formulas even her pictures and wording on their products before.

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  2. Very interesting. I learned so much.

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  3. Thank you for sharing this interesting and useful information about IP law and how it affects your business

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  4. Thank you for the information. There are so many things to be aware of when you own your own business! This is very helpful information.

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  5. Thanks for the info!

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  6. I see so many copycats out there and those who reuse an image that they didn't create and not give attribution to the creator. It will likely catch up with the copycats in the long run.

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