What kind of Risks exist in the Interactive Market?
In our current market economy, power rests with the consumer. The digital market place has made it easier for innovative products and services to transcend geographic boundaries and enter the global arena. There are currently over 1.5 billion Facebook accounts, 284 million Twitter accounts and 200 million Instagram accounts; the rise of the social networks has allowed individuals to “self-market” reaching broad global audiences with very low costs. According to a study conducted in 2015, digital commerce has become even more dynamic with 46% of all purchases being made using a mobile device.
The unpreceded level of access that consumers now have has created opportunities for entrepreneurs to expand their markets, but every opportunity has some risks. But how can these entrepreneurs protect their ideas in a global market? The simple answer: you can’t, an idea in itself is not subject to protection.
But what can you protect? In the simplest terms intellectual property refers to the intangible assets the product of human intellectual activity that are subject to property titles and other legal protections. The main categories under which the legal protections of intellectual property (IP) fall are:
- Inventions: includes some product designs and/or artifacts
- Trade secrets
- Copyrights (such as artistic works, digital software, apps, videos and multimedia)
- Trademarks to protect brands
How would a trademark protect a brand? When some third party uses a similar design to a registered brand, the original brands strength, reputation and market value can become diluted. Registering the brand in the USA is a necessary step for those who are looking to expand their markets to international shores; any expansion plan should contemplate the protection of intangible assets.
Some of the main advantages registering a trademark in the USA are:
- Dissuades others from using similar characteristics
- Protects from others registering offerings with similar characteristics
- Provides a basis for international registration
- Offers protection against pirated goods being imported
Our rapidly evolving and increasingly borderless commercial environment will continue to drive intellectual property issues to the forefront of business concerns, protecting the organizations intangible assets is not a task that should be taken lightly, expert legal counsel can not only help you protect those assets but also maximize their value.