MEM Concessions LLC is a company that may need to protect its ideas.
So, you came up with this great idea, how are you going protect it and stop anyone else having the same brain wave. Well there are four different ways depending on what the idea involves; these are the ways that you can protect your intellectual property which basically means your idea, invention or piece of work. The ways to protect it are
- Trade Secrets
- Copyrights, and
A trade secret is generally what all inventions begin as; you need to protect this idea before you market it, as a patent, trademark or copyright, as follows. If your creation falls into more than one area you can protect it with more than one type of intellectual property protection. It is important that you separate and determine what parts of the invention will be covered by the different types of protection. You need to think outside of the box with this and work out what people might wish to steal; you may want to get expert advice.
So, which is which? Trade secrets will protect information that is not currently known by the public and which the owner has tried to keep secret, usually for an important reason. This could be anything from a business plan, advertising campaign to a recipe. You do not need to register a trade secret with the government and you should only share the information on a need to know basis. You must show that you have taken steps to keep it secret and the law to protect the secret will protect the misuse or spreading of the secret.
Trademark protection, as you would expect, will protect your brand. Colors, patterns and names usually relate to trademarks. Anything which when you see it you initially think of a certain brand. It will also include logos and slogans and you should have researched that you were not stepping on anyone’s toes when you decided on your slogan and trademarks. You do not need to register a trademark, but it becomes advantageous to do so if others subsequently try to steal it.
Most products are copyright. This can include packaging and images on packaging. Again, copyright does not need to be registered but there will be benefits if you do register it. This can save you in attorney fees if you ever have to take the matter further.
Patent protection will protect either the utility, the purpose of the item, or the design which is how it looks. The best way to decide between them is to work out how you would describe your product if you were selling it. If you would focus on its purpose, then you need utility protection. On the other hand, if you would focus on its design and how it looked then you need design protection. If you do come up with that idea that may just revolutionise twenty first century living, then make sure you protect it in the right way. If it is a really major idea that is likely to make you a lot of money, then you should seek professional advice.