A Trademark or Domain name is the unique identity of any business or online marketing.
A lot of people say, what’s in a name?
But, this is not true when you want your business to make a different identity from another crowd.
Trademark is a much essential and legal topic, which is mainly a vital topic for website and business owners to make the mark in the target audience.
Over time, as your business grows, the value of your brand also increases through its personality, stories, and audience perception.
What Is A Trademark?
A trademark is a type of intellective property that consists of a recognizable sign, design, symbol, logo, jingle, or any expression that identifies the products or services which belong to a particular source. The trademarks used to determine the services are called service marks.
Therefore, you are telling everyone that this particular thing or business is yours, and no one can use it on others’ name without your permission.
What Can be Trademarked?
According to the law, almost everything can be trademarked for safety. Trademark doesn’t relate directly to the functions of any product, and also this does not mean that it can affect the performance of the goods and services on which it applied.
Thus, anything from a word, phrase, colour, instrument to cuisine, perfume, speakers, etc. can be registered under the trademark.
What cannot be a Trademark?
1) According to the Indian rules name and surname cannot be trademarked, unless they have a specific character. Like you cannot trademark the name SUNIL DHAWAN, but you can attach it with something else, like SUNIL DHAWAN’S FINANCING CONSULTANCY and it can be trademarked.
2) Numerics – Furthermore, numbers cannot be used for trademarks, as they are associated with a specific nature.
3) Geographical locations – The geographic areas cannot be used as a trademark. E.g., if you use Jaipur with the label, it cannot be trademarked, as it is already a popular city.
4) Already registered trademarks – You cannot trademark anything that has already registered.
Like Nike use the tag line “ just do it” in connection with the clothing and footwear accessories.
So, you can register the phrase “just do it” in connection with your gym. In this case, Nike cannot file any complaint against you for the trademark infringement.
5) Common names and services may not be trademarked – Just as You cannot trademark Web Development for a Web Development service, it means that you cannot prevent other people from using the term to describe their web development service
Likewise, you cannot use PINEAPPLE for the pineapple you are selling, as the purpose of a trademark is to separate your product from others and not to prohibit others from selling products of that type. It is not right to say, anyone, that, “I am the only person who can sell pineapples in Australia”.
Business Names and Domain Names –
It is only your responsibility to protect your brand and domain name. Whatever name you are going to choose for your business will become your brand identity.
It can be a tedious task to protect your brand from the domain, hi-jacking and domain squatting, and also it can be very expensive for you. So, to protect your high capital business, you will need to apply the highest level of protection to it.
Registering the domain name –
There are a lot of web hosting companies who allow you to check, verify and register domain names. If you are setting up a new business or making a new website, then you should always verify that the same brand name or symbol doesn’t belong to others, that means making sure it is not same from the other brand name.
Uses Of Trademark –
It has seen that after receiving a logo, many businesses create the marketing literature, acquire websites with their registered trademark, to find out that if any other commercial uses their logo. Also, there is no such need to carry out activities because once you receive your mark, it means that it is not available for others. And once it is registered, it will not make any difference whether it has been used or not, because someone already holds the right for it.
As of now, you can use or show your trademark for the commercial purposes or promotion of your Brand.
Generally, it was difficult to choose the domain names with the top-level domains with domain extensions like .com, .in .org etc. Because the names you wanted might have registered and so you will have to compromise with your choices. That’s why some new TLDs are introduced in the market, which can be used to restrict domain hijacking.
Who Protects Your Trademarked Domains?
So after registering the domain, you may think of to secure it. Or who should handle the work to ensure the domain registration?
This task is carried out by the well known non-profit organization named Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) that look after all the internet domain names.
Work of ICANN And Trademark Clearinghouse :
The Trademark Clearinghouse and ICANN work together to provide clear and definitive protection to your registered trademark and also to maintain a global database of verified trademarks. Therefore, it is always beneficial for you to register your trademark with Trademark Clearinghouse. To register, you must supply all evidence for the mark you wish to hold. And the Trademark Clearinghouse will record your interest.
So, now if any of the new applicants want to register the similar logo with other TLD, then that applicant will receive a message from Trademark Clearinghouse. And this message will be a warning from him that if he proceeds with the trademark completion task, then the legal actions will be taken against him by the trademark owner. If the applicant continues the procedure, then the trademark owner will be notified about the applicants’ activities. The trademark owner can also register their domain earlier with all the newly introduced TLDs. Pre-registration also referred to like the sunrise period, which intends to lasts between 1 month to 60 days, and it is also related to the trademarks registered under Trademark Clearinghouse.
Why It Is Important To Register Trademark?
1) Trademark represents your brand – It is another way to refer your business. the are influenced by the trademarks and the reputation of your brand also.
2) Exclusive rights – Registering your trademark gives you the exclusive right for its uses.
3) Ownership – You become the owner of your logo. And whoever uses your pre-registered trademark then he will have to pay you the monetary value to use it.
4) Trademark gives you a better approach – Using the trademark or a brand name helps you to reach to the vast audience, which ultimately reduces your marketing and advertising cost. Many popular brands don’t even put the brand name into the posters that they publish. Therefore, the trademark makes it easy for your consumers to find you.
5) Trademark gives you Federative protection –Registering a trademark with the federal registration gives a constructive notice to the country that you are the owner of the mark, even if you don’ t do the business on the national level.
Last But Not The Least :
The domain hijacking and domain squatting have increased in the world of internet. So it makes every website owner aware of the trademarking the domain before it gets used by other business owners. So, it is always a sensible task to provide out all the legal protection to your business and brand, by acquiring the domain names even before building or starting the business or a website.
Also, read our previous blog- DigitalOcean vs. AWS Cloud Platform: Which one you choose?