how to copyright a word

Because of the various legal hurdles associated with copyrights and trademarks, it is important to speak to an expert before pursuing any course of action. A trademarks allows its owner exclusive rights to associate a particular word, phrase or visual symbol with her products. A trademark can cover things like a brand name, a slogan or a logo. You don’t have to register a trademark to use it, but registration is a useful way to prove the trademark belongs to you. In the United States, the Patent and Trademark Office, part of the Department of Commerce, handles trademark registration. You can register your copyright through the Internet or by submitting paper forms, though online registration is faster and less expensive.

If you’re still in doubt about registering the copyright and trademark for your brand’s logo, these examples will convince you of their importance. As for registered copyright, you can protect usage of your logo, its publishing, distribution, and control how it is presented to the public. To specify, trademark protection relates more to confusion in the global/local market, rather than to the unauthorized use of the logo. If you don’t have a trademark or copyright you may not be able to sue another party for infringement on your logo. Elements protected by trademarkIf you want to protect your brand identity you have to register a trademark for your company name, logos, and slogans. Trademark protection ®Trademark can be both words combination, symbol or type of design, which differentiate your particular brand from many others, who are offering same products and services, as you. In other words, copyright law protects the “expression” of an idea, but copyright does not protect the “idea” itself.

This works best for large blogs that have been built under a unique name. With either of these plugins, just activate, install, and your content will be protected by copyright laws. You can submit your registration for multiple blog posts at once through the copyright office.

how to copyright a word

Before doing so you will be required to pay a fee, which is calculated based on your registration preferences. Once your application is complete, you will be prompted to check out. The United States Copyright Office website has a great tutorial you can utilize, which gives you step-by-step instructions on how to complete the application. You will be prompted to answer a series of questions until the application is complete. For example, you might write a book that describes a new system of bookkeeping. In theory, you do not need to own the original copy in order to own the copyright.

Can You Copyright A Single Word?

In order to qualify for copyright protection, an original creative work must exist in tangible form—in other words, written down or in a form you can touch. If the first method doesn’t succeed, a second option is for you, as the copyright owner, to file a civil lawsuit against the infringing party.

But, if you want to take an extra step of protection and spell out the use and misuse of your content in greater detail, then creating and adding a Terms of Use page to your site is a great idea. Almost every website that you find on the Internet will have a copyright notice which gives basic information about the site. Even though the law has changed and placing a copyright symbol won’t actually protect your work, there is an unwritten rule for web designers to put a notice in the footer of the website they have created. Copyright protects original works of authorship, while a patent protects inventions or discoveries. Ideas and discoveries are not protected by the copyright law, although the way in which they are expressed may be. A trademark protects words, phrases, symbols, or designs identifying the source of the goods or services of one party and distinguishing them from those of others.

We work hard every day to put quality content out there for our community. This will save your time and money during the trademark filing process. A phrase that is currently being used in everyday conversation is almost impossible to trademark. Make sure the phrase what are retained earnings you intend to trademark is unique. If an error isn’t correctable, you will lose your filing fee and you’ll have to submit a new form. If you can correct your form, you can send the correction to the USPTO through its Trademark Electronic Application System.

  • However, you can’t copyright a speech that isn’t transcribed or a live performance of an original song that isn’t recorded.
  • Once your work is fixed, you’ll have copyright protections, like having the sole ability to display, reproduce, or perform your work.
  • For example, you can fix a piece of writing by printing it out or storing it on a computer.
  • To make sure your work is copyrightable, you’ll need to put it into a fixed form that can be reproduced.
  • Copyright laws apply to original works of literature, music, drama, sound, and architecture.

Call the USPTO’s Trademark Assistance Center at or email with any questions or to report any potential application errors. Speak with a trademark attorney if you have any questions about getting a trademark. “This article erased concerns about the need to go through a formal bookkeeping process of getting a copyright on my writings.” place “c. 2019 ” on any paper or typed document to show that you are the author and creator of your work for no charge.” It is a good idea to copyright it so that no one else steals your work, but it is not a requirement.


As copyright infringement becomes more common, owners are becoming more aggressive in protecting their rights by issuing copyright infringement notices. Although private and government agencies accept and process copyright registrations, those entities don’t normally address alleged copyright infringement claims. As the creator, owner, or holder of the copyrighted material, it’s up to you to enforce your rights to stop the infringing activity. If your blog continues to grow in popularity, then you might want to consider trademarking the name of your blog. A copyright will protect your the content on yoru blog, while a trademark will protect the name of your blog.

Taking the proper copyright steps now will give you greater legal ground and an improved sense of protection against people who might scrape your site’s content and original images. Although registered trademark protects all details your logo was made from, you won’t be able to protect your logo authorship without registered copyright. The biggest difference between them is that copyrighting won’t protect your brand’s name and logo from infringement, but a trademark will.

Writers Beware, which is sponsored by the SFWA, is always a dependable place to get contract advice. We especially are fans of their Basic Copyright page and this blog post. And for more information on photography usage and whether or not you should register the copyright for a book cover, check out this post over on Book Design House and this post on CreativIndie. Foreign authors outside of the U.S. can sue for infringement in the U.S. — though, without registration, they are not entitled to certain financial protections.

For more information on inserting symbols in Word, check out our article on the subject.

how to copyright a word

3) Since when has the letter of the law stopped a judge from ruling the way he/she “felt” was right. While other websites have resorted to paywalls, registration requirements, and increasingly annoying/intrusive advertising, we have always kept Techdirt open and available to anyone. But in order to continue doing so, we need your support. We offer a variety of ways for our readers to support us, from direct donations to special subscriptions and cool merchandise — and every little bit helps. With so many things competing for everyone’s attention these days, we really appreciate you giving us your time.

How To Create A Copyright Notice In Your WordPress Footer By Using A Plugin

This typically serves to establish a legally recognized date in which the copyright can be proven, which may be important when dealing with works that are derivative of your document. When you create a piece of writing, you get certain property rights automatically. Copyright laws apply to original works of literature, music, drama, sound, and architecture. To make sure your work is copyrightable, you’ll need to put it into a fixed form that can be reproduced. For example, you can fix a piece of writing by printing it out or storing it on a computer. However, you can’t copyright a speech that isn’t transcribed or a live performance of an original song that isn’t recorded.

how to copyright a word

Once your work is fixed, you’ll have copyright protections, like having the sole ability to display, reproduce, or perform your work. As soon as you create the materials, they are copyrighted.

The only way to achieve protection is through a copyright, trademark or both. And here lies the confusion with logos – many of them actually qualify for both trademark and copyright protection.

For example, if you publicly perform some original music and an audience member records it, you own the copyright of that recording. As part of the creation process, you will need to fix your original work in order for it to be copyrightable. Note that copyright duration in other countries varies, but is generally not less than 50 years from publication or from the death of the author, by treaty. If your writing was how to copyright a word a work for hire or is published anonymously, the copyright will last either 95 years from publication or 120 years from creation. Your rights are also limited by “first sale”, meaning you cannot prevent others from reselling copies of your works, once you have sold them. Many software products are therefore not actually “sold”, but rather “licensed” to end-users, often restricting the right of further resale.

However, the United States does not have such copyright relationships with every country. For a listing of countries and the nature of their copyright relations with the United States, see Circular 38a, International Copyright Relations of the United States. Why would a company that I assumes wants to market their company want to copyright a brand name making it illegal essentially to utter or write down a companies brand cash basis name. No company would want their brand name from being written down by anyone without the permission from the company. You could soon be sued for simply writing the name Mickey Mouse. Except that CFR regulations don’t trump case law, and courts have gone the other way in some limited cases. CFR regulations aren’t really “the letter of the law.” They are an agency’s best attempts at giving their view of the law.

Whether you mark the work or not doesn’t affect the level of protection you have. You get copyright protection automatically – you don’t have to apply or pay a fee. Even with all the above security in place, if someone still goes to the trouble of finding a way to download your images, watermarks will ensure that they are not able to pass the work off as their own. A watermark is a layer on top of your image that credits you as the artist and acknowledges that you own the copyrighted artwork. Generally, a watermark will include the name of the copyright owner, along with the copyright symbol (©) and the year the work was completed.

It is unlikely that a single word can be subject to a copyright; however, a trademark might offer the type of protection sought. You can register a copyright for your book by submitting your registration electronically, or by mailing in a print application.

However, there is a great deal of overlap between two areas of copyright and trademark, and businesses are known for using both to protect their logos from undesired use. You can mark your work with the copyright symbol (©), your name and the year of creation.

Even assuming a word can be copyrighted, the holder must take certain steps to take advantage of those protections. Before a copyright holder can bring an action for copyright infringement, she must register her copyright with the Library of Congress. Likewise, trademark protection arises only if another person is using a confusingly similar mark in commerce.

Trademark The Name Of Your Blog

If your work is copyrightable, it will be copyrighted as soon as it is “fixed.” Nothing more needs to be done to gain the protections how to copyright a word of the law. However, there may be certain reasons you want to register your copyright and formally protect it well into the future.

Intellectual property rights protect products of the mind. Two of the most common intellectual property rights are copyrights and trademarks. A copyright protects original works of authorship, and trademarks act as source identifiers.