Copyright & Trademarks Understanding The Many Differences


Joey has just written his first song for his new band, and it’s an amazing song! Because he is new in the music business he has been told by several people it is important for him to preserve his rights to his original music and lyrics, but he’s not sure if this means he needs to seek out a copyright or a trademark. Like many, Joey is confused by the differences between getting a copyright and a trademark. If you have the situation this kind and need help, you can call patent agent.

Copyright or Trademark, what exactly is the difference between the two? Many who have written or created an original work of some kind or another typically get the two confused. They are however distinctly different types of legal protection for distinctly different types of products/services.

Both copyright and trademark protection intellectual property, the difference lies within the varying kinds of intellectual property. Writers generally understand if they want to protect their original literature or writings it has to be copyrighted. The copyright protects an author’s original works, whether it is works of music/lyrics; dramatic- such as movies, screenplays or videos; artistic works and other certain types of intellectual works whether published or not.

A copyright gives to the owner exclusive rights to create spinoff works of, reproduce the copyrighted material, distribute copies of the material or works, as well as perform publicly or display publicly the copyrighted material/works. In other words a copyright protect the form or manner of expression and not the subject of the writing, art, movie, etc. An example of this could be Joey’s song, his song is about love, well of course love cannot be copyrighted and a copyright would only protect Joey’s description of love through his lyrics and only legal prevents anyone else from using his same ‘description’.

It wouldn’t of course prevent anyone from writing their own ‘description’ of love or using the word love. Copyrights are registered with the “Copyright Office of the Library of Congress” unlike trademarks (and patents) which are obtained and filed with the Patent And Trademark Office.

Now a Trademark is legal protection for a symbol, a name, word or device used in trade with products or goods to indicate the source or manufacturer in a way that distinguishes the goods or products from others. Trademark rights are used to inhibit others from using a clearly similar mark, which can cause confusion to consumers.

It does not however prevent others from making the same type of products or goods and it doesn’t prevent them from selling the same kinds goods or services under a distinctly different mark.

An example for a Trademark would be if Joey and his band designed an original logo for their band, they would request a Trademark for their logo/symbol which would prevent anyone else from using that same or a very similar logo/symbol, it wouldn’t prevent another band from playing the same type of genre of music.

So now that Joey understand the difference, he can now get the proper forms to make sure his original music and lyrics are copyrighted so no other artist can come a long and claim ownership or use of his soon-to-be award-winning song. Yes Joey’s song is that good, well at least he hopes it is.

Find us on Google Plus

Twitter feed