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Question on Legal Trademark / Copyright?

Question on Legal Trademark / Copyright? Topic: Purposes for writing a business plan
July 19, 2019 / By Obed-Edom
Question: I have a question specific to copyright / trademark pertaining to a web site. There is a large transportation company in my state that recently started a light rail transport train. For arguments sake we will call it xyz company. Since there are numerous stops on this I decided to purchase a web site and I called it www.xyz-stops.com My plan is to have all of the stops listed on this web site and allow businesses at each stop to advertise on my web site based on category (dining, shopping etc) My questions is... do I violate any copyright / trademark with this web site? I did seek out to the transportation company and they right away threatened me with a lawsuit if I pursue this venture. I actually took a ride on the train the other day and saw numerous businesses with the transport company name in there like The XYZ Cafe, XYZ Storage, XYZ Realty Just looking for any advice.
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Best Answers: Question on Legal Trademark / Copyright?

Langford Langford | 1 day ago
Copyright protects creative works -- songs, art, stories, software, etc. -- and unless you are using images or text from XYZ company, then copyright laws are not involved. Trademark protects right of ownership -- it ensures that only the original company can use a particular phrase or logo -- so that competitors cannot steal their good will or make counterfeit products. Because you are using the XYZ name, and specifically to refer to XYZ train stops -- you are relying on their trademark, for something that is not theirs -- and in the process, holding yourself out as being related to them. That's a potential trademark violation. If you want to do your website -- get a written letter from XYZ saying that they are allowing you to use their name for reference purposes -- but that you are going to make it clear that you are an independent company. That's probably what each of the other businesses also did.
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Langford Originally Answered: Trademark or Copyright? Costs?
You wouldn't copyright it. Copyrights can be obtained for things of an artistic nature. This includes, of course, poetry, films, sculptures, music, fiction, etc. But can also include things that may not necessarily seem "artistic" in the general sense of the word. Copyrights can also be obtained for advertising copy, games, software programs and blueprints, to name just a few. Trademarks can be names of products or services, logos, slogans, packaging and even sounds and smells. In essence, a trademark can be almost anything that is used to identify a particular product or service. Registering a trademark grants the owner exclusive rights to the mark within the specified industry. Of course, it's necessary to research the mark comprehensively prior to filing to ensure that there is no possibility of infringing upon another party. This entails searching the pending & registered Federal and State trademark files as well as the US National Common-Law files. Then, if clear, you can decide if you would like to file for a Federal or a State trademark. To register a trademark, that's done either through your Secretary of State for a State trademark or the US Patent & Trademark Office for a Federal trademark. If you are only conducting business in one state, then a State trademark is most appropriate. If you conduct (OR are planning to conduct) business in at least 2 states OR between the US & any other country, you can file for a Federal trademark. The Federal government, USPTO, charges $325 per classification. State fees vary, from $10 to $120. Hope that helps! I wish you much success & happiness in all your ventures!
Langford Originally Answered: Trademark or Copyright? Costs?
Copyright will exist in a thing at the moment it is created. There is no legal/formal process for "copyrighting" a thing. From what you have described, it is likely that the logo will attract copyright (automatically) as an "artistic work" ("drawing"). It is unlikely that the name of the event will attract copyright, however, because in general, a single word or phrase will not be sufficiently substantial to attract copyright (as a "literary work"). With respect to trademark law, you will have no, or very limited, "automatic" protection of either the logo or name, since the product to which they attach (ie your charity event) presumably has little or no commercial reputation. However, you may apply to register either the logo or name as "registered trademarks" with the relevant Trademark Office in your jurisdiction. Be aware, though, that this is likely to be a relatively long and expensive process. I recommend you do an internet search for the relevant agency in your jurisdiction, which should have information on how to go about this process. If, like me, you live in Australia, the relevant website is: http://www.ipaustralia.gov.au/trademarks/index.shtml If you are not in Australia and are now worrying that my answer won't apply to you, I should add that trademark and copyright laws are remarkably uniform across just about all jurisdictions internationally, as domestic laws in these areas are broadly governed by international treaties. Good luck with your venture.

Issachar Issachar
it quite is thoroughly unlawful (surely a federal crime) for every person to accomplish willful copyright infringement for advertisement benefit or deepest monetary income (18 USC 2319 referencing 17 USC 506 offender copyright). you're able to desire to be charged for even soliciting a federal crime (i.e., offering to pay somebody to reproduction or distribute copyrighted photographs without a license). they could be watching as much as 3 years in detention center on the 1st conviction and 10 years for their 2nd (as though every person might ever make that mistake two times). All form designs containing unique works of inventive authorship are copyrighted.
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Issachar Originally Answered: Can you copyright / trademark a phrase?
First, it's not possible to copyright a slogan. Copyrights can be obtained for things of an artistic nature. This includes, of course, poetry, films, sculptures, music, fiction, etc. But can also include things that may not necessarily seem "artistic" in the general sense of the word. Copyrights can also be obtained for advertising copy, games, software programs and blueprints, to name just a few. It may be possible to file for a trademark for the slogan as long as it's used to indicate & identify the source of goods/services. If we're talking about a merely informational slogan or a slogan that conveys advertising information, it's not eligible for trademark registration. Let's take a look at what the USPTO says (and then what that actually means): "Use of a...slogan to convey advertising or promotional information...is not service mark use." Basically, if your slogan describes your service and/or serves as advertising copy, it's not likely eligible for trademark registration. Again, this is a tricky, gray area so seek advice should you have a slogan that you intend to use for services. After reading this it may seem impossible for any slogan to qualify for trademark protection but really that is not the case. It's all in how the slogan is used & presented. For example, both Nike's ® slogan Just Do It ® and McDonald's ® slogan I'm Lovin' It ® are Federally registered trademarks. Hope that helps! I wish you much success & happiness in all your ventures!
Issachar Originally Answered: Can you copyright / trademark a phrase?
RE: can you copyright / trademark a phrase? Hi all, i have a catchphrase for a website of mine and i have searched and found no one currently using it. is there a way to trademark or copyright a phrase for a website? its a good catchphrase that ties in with a coupon/deal sites i own, and i know it will be re-used once i mass-release it...

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