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It's unlikely that you'll be able to afford to trademark your name globally (to do that in all Western countries will be in excess of $10,000). You can do so in just the US, but if you're going to be web-based, a company in Bangkok using your name is just a likely to be as much a threat for infringment (as yourcompany.net could still out-Google you regardless of their location).

A good option is to make sure you own the domain names for company name (such as .com, .net, and the main English language domains such as .ca, .co.uk, and .au). If you still want to trademark your name (to be honest, I don't think this is really much a concern until you at least know you're successful), I'd recommend putting the paper work through for the US, Canada, the UK, and Australia. Not only would that cover the main English market, but a UK registration would give you a degree of protection across the whole of the EU, and Australia across the Asian Economic Community.

Of course, to bring an actual case would be an enormous financial urden, but a C&D letter may do the job.
 

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aokusman said:
Actually you can trademark your name name almost globally. Check for Madrid protocol on the uspto website. With the madrid protocol filing your trademark will be protected in over 100 countries. If you do not trademark your name, even it was your idea, and someone else does you are at a loss.
Filing under the Madrid Protocol isn't really an option for a small business. You are not automatically covered under the member countries: there is a fee per country. You're still talking thousands of dollars. I'm not sure it's worth the effort (at least until you're established).
 

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I'd recommend, at this beginning stage, just making sure you have the .com, .net, .ca, .co.uk, and .com.au websites (and other major markets if you plan to sell internationally, but they're the major western English speaking markets). You could get all 5 for $40 a year, and that really does cut out many of the problems if you're trading on-line.
 

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graffix said:
no course not i am not trying to trademark or patent my name i have an idea of name what i want it to be patented you see

what i want to know is how i am going to patent? where do i apply one?
From http://www.uspto.gov/web/offices/pac/doc/general/whatis.htm


What Is a Patent?

A patent for an invention is the grant of a property right to the inventor, issued by the Patent and Trademark Office. The term of a new patent is 20 years from the date on which the application for the patent was filed in the United States or, in special cases, from the date an earlier related application was filed, subject to the payment of maintenance fees. US patent grants are effective only within the US, US territories, and US possessions.

The right conferred by the patent grant is, in the language of the statute and of the grant itself, “the right to exclude others from making, using, offering for sale, or selling” the invention in the United States or “importing” the invention into the United States. What is granted is not the right to make, use, offer for sale, sell or import, but the right to exclude others from making, using, offering for sale, selling or importing the invention.

What Is a Trademark or Servicemark?

A trademark is a word, name, symbol or device which is used in trade with goods to indicate the source of the goods and to distinguish them from the goods of others. A servicemark is the same as a trademark except that it identifies and distinguishes the source of a service rather than a product. The terms "trademark" and "mark" are commonly used to refer to both trademarks and servicemarks.

Trademark rights may be used to prevent others from using a confusingly similar mark, but not to prevent others from making the same goods or from selling the same goods or services under a clearly different mark. Trademarks which are used in interstate or foreign commerce may be registered with the Patent and Trademark Office. The registration procedure for trademarks and general information concerning trademarks is described in a separate pamphlet entitled "Basic Facts about Trademarks".

What Is a Copyright?

Copyright is a form of protection provided to the authors of “original works of authorship” including literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, and certain other intellectual works, both published and unpublished. The 1976 Copyright Act generally gives the owner of copyright the exclusive right to reproduce the copyrighted work, to prepare derivative works, to distribute copies or phonorecords of the copyrighted work, to perform the copyrighted work publicly, or to display the copyrighted work publicly.

The copyright protects the form of expression rather than the subject matter of the writing. For example, a description of a machine could be copyrighted, but this would only prevent others from copying the description; it would not prevent others from writing a description of their own or from making and using the machine. Copyrights are registered by the Copyright Office of the Library of Congress.
 

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Solmu said:
Where? That would be $8/domain which is a good price even for .com

.com.au domains are stupidly expensive (the excuse being that .au domains are a lot better regulated I guess) - I'd expect to pay $40 just for .com.au

(sorry for the curt tone; the usual no sleep looming deadline reasons, I'm just being economical with words)
oneandone.co.uk (*not* the US version) charges (are at least all my plans are....and they haven't told me of any increases, and I paid renewal fees last month) are GBP5.99 per .com, GBP5.99 per .net, and GBP1.99 per country code. Which adds up to GBP 18, about 40 bucks per year.

All my current domains were registered 2 years ago, but i can't imagine prices have risen that drastically.
 

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I've just checked, and prices now seem to be GBP8.99 for .coms and .nets, still GBP1.99 for country codes. Which is therefore about $6 above my estimate.

They now only seem to be offering .us, co.uk and .eu (didn't even know that existed!) as a country code, and not .com.au....not sure why, as I registed a .com.au with them a few months ago.
 

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cameo said:
Yeah, patent is very different than branding, I see your point.
Cameo
No, patents are very different from trademarks, which are very different from copyrights :)

Branding is very different from all of the above (theoretically, "branding" could be any of the above, or none)!
 

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I'm going to say it one more time :)

A patent is for an invention (such as the telephone) , unique discovery (such as the current evil trend of DNA patents), or innovation (such as specific bits of unique programming in Photoshop).

Unless you create a t-shirt which makes you loose weight and tones your thighs, nobody on this site is going to be patenting anything.

You cannot "patent" an artistic design unless it also produces some unique function.
 

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cameo said:
You could be right?
It's worth looking into if you're serious about copyrighting your designs. I plan on doing this in the very near future.
Check the definitional post of the first page of this thread, from the US Patent and Trademark Office.

I have both copyrighted and trademarked works many, many times in my old job.

I have never patented anything, as I am not an inventor, nor have i ever worked for one.
 

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Try arguing about the asthetic benefits of heat transfer over screen-printing if you *really* want to see an argument erupt, and the forums flow with blood :)
 
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