What is a Trademark?

Generally speaking, a trademark is something you use to identify the services or products that come from you. It can be a word or words, an image (ie: logo), or even a sound or smell. If a mark represents a product, it is a “trademark.”  If it represents a service you provide, it is a “service mark.”  However, the word “trademark” is used as a general term for both products and services.

Here is the legal definition from the federal law itself:

The term “trademark” includes any word, name, symbol, or device, or any combination thereof—
(1) used by a person, or
(2) which a person has a bona fide intention to use in commerce and applies to register on the principal register established by this chapter,
to identify and distinguish his or her goods, including a unique product, from those manufactured or sold by others and to indicate the source of the goods, even if that source is unknown.
Leland Faux
Attorney Leland Faux blogs about trademark, copyright, and online business issues at Law of the Brand. You can submit a question by email to thelawofthebrand@gmail.com.

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