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Steve Moore, B.A., J.D. Author Steve has been in the music business for over 30 years! He's worked as a professional musician, producer, and has been involved in almost every aspect of the music business. He's also the author of "The Truth about the Music Business"

How to Trademark Your Business Name

I get asked this WAY TOO OFTEN – or worse, I hear people saying I”m going to COPYRIGHT MY BAND NAME.

Well you can NOT copyright a name – you can’t copyright a title to a song, you can’t even copyright an expression!

TRADEMARK is how you protect your band, business or BRAND NAME!

The key difference between a copyright and a trademark is kind of strange, but “it’s not just a good idea – it’s the LAW”

Copyrights are designed to protect the CREATOR or CREATORS of a “work” – that could be a song, a photograph, artwork, the list goes on and on – and IF one files a copyright – (as diccussed in an earlier blog) then you get the protection of your work for your life (or the creators life) plus 70 years!  Yes, that’s right long after you are gone – your successors, heirs or assigns will still get paid as long as your copyright is still earning MONEY!

Trademark’s, however, are designed to protect the consumer – NOT the OWNER of the TRADEMARK (or Service mark 0r both) –  the person, company or other entity that files for the TRADEMARK has the right to PROTECT the mark and I can assure some brands will stop at NOTHING to protect their marks!  Try using Coca-Cola somewhere and just SEE what happens!

But the real INTENT of Trademark  is to protect the CONSUMER as to the ORIGIN of that Good or Service – and confusion in the market place is the TEST to determine that one MARK can infringe on another MARK is based upon the “Class of Goods or Services or both”.

As with Copyright – or similarly – the first to use the name is COMMERCE has the right to protect their MARK!  And since I’m in the process of dealing with some “other companies and/or entities that are using my MARKS for different companies, businesses and/or entities – I”m not giving away the farm here – but suffice to say that if somebody is using YOUR MARK and you can show that you were FIRST to use that MARK “IN COMMERCE” then you can make them STOP using your mark – and a (R) or (S) can get a whole LOT MORE INTENSE when it comes to penalties!  But I’ll leave that for another time…

Hope you enjoy reading this – and again, this is NOT LEGAL ADVICE – I’m merely pointing out some basics that come from my BOOK – “The Truth about the Music Business

I’ll have plenty more to discuss about this in OUR FAQ section in the weeks, months and I hope, YEARS TO COME!


Steve Moore, BA, JD. Author “The Truth About the Music Business


You can find all kinds of  GREAT INFO in this book!  I’ll have another website up soon for this book and my other published works – so Stay Tuned!


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