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When thinking about intellectual property (IP), most people likely think about patents, trademarks and copyrights. In the most simplistic terms: patents protect novel and non-obvious inventions; trademarks protect a business’ brand names and logos; and copyrights protect tangible, fixed works of creative expression. Trade secrets are also increasingly being recognized as the fourth main pillar of IP and can run the gamut from things like customer lists and pricing, to inventions that may or may not be patentable. Every business has some or all of these forms of IP, but what about lesser known forms of IP such as “trade dress”? Trade dress is a kind of trademark that protects the overall look and design of products and packaging. Many (if not most) product companies and retail establishments have protectable trade dress, although not all companies recognize that they have it (and therefore don’t protect it!).
By Stacey C. Kalamaras
This summer, the Madrid System turned 30 years old, and as two more countries prepare to join the Madrid Protocol we look at how the Madrid System has grown as it enters full adulthood.
By Aaron Davidson
A look at the gray area of infringement of U.S. patents in the U.S., but with related consequences or actions outside the U.S.
By Howard Shire and Christine Weller
Penn State Files Trademark Lawsuit against Sports Beer Brewing Company
Can OSU Trademark the Word “The”?
By David S. Gold
Branding is not a new concept, nor are the various intellectual property laws that protect brands. What is new to most is how this burgeoning industry can take advantage of those laws within the context of state and federal restrictions.