PROTECT YOUR BRAND ONLINE
Are you among those whose trademarks everybody is using, but you get absolutely NOTHING in return? If YES, I have prepared 4 suggestions about how to stop it or (at least) limit it.
Today, online presence is no longer a question of IF, rather WHERE. Soo the minute you decide to go global, you need to take into consideration which social platform(s) to use and how often (like Facebook, LinkedIN, Twitter, Instagram...). But in a daily "balast" of useful and relevant content, normally (especially in growth phase of the product) ONE PROBLEM always emerges:
How can I control third parties use of my Trademark on social media platforms?
1.Register your Trademark
First and most basic pre-condition for protecting and controlling the use of any type of Trademark (online or offline) is that you get your Trademark registered. Without it, you will not be able to achieve anything.... Well if you have an army of lawyers across the world.... NOPE, even then your best thing to do is to develop an entirely new brand. If you are thinking right now: »Why should I register my trademark in the first place, you need to first read benefits of the registered Trademark in one of my earlier posts.
2.Each social media platform has terms of service
On these, most of the platforms have certain provisions to avoid responsibility for infringement of third party's Intellectual Property (meaning the use of Trademarks as well). Some smaller platforms though, goes extra mile and remove the content purely based on user's request. However, platforms such as Facebook, Google+, LinkedIN, Flicker and others request submitting proof of ownership (usually Certificates of registration).
3.Active monitoring/watching of your Trademark
You yourself can do a LOT by actively monitor content creation from your competitors or all those who might profit the most from using your Trademark (such as acquiring new "potential" confused customer). If you are considering such monitoring/watching. it is best to check with your Trademark representative if he/she can help you and at reasonable cost. This way you can be sure that there are experts handling your Trademark and watch it to stay protected and enforced properly.
Industrial Property Right (patent, trademark, design, geographical indication) is a PROPERTY right and the owner is the one who has to take care of it. There are a lot of owners out there thinking that once their right has been registered, the government will take care of its potential infringement. This assumption is a FALSE one. Just ask yourself who is the one who should be activating the alarm when you leave your home? The guy who installed it or you?
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