Difference Between Trademark ™, Registered ® and Copyright ©

Have you ever come across brand names and encountered various symbols which you did not understand the meaning of? Well, that is usual as there exists a nomenclature which legalizes certain brand names. These naming methods include trademark, registered, and copyright. These three names give a different message and allow you to understand the brand better.

Trademark ™

Whoever has not yet been able to register their brand name with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) should be listed as a “Trademark” as opposed to a “Registered.” Similarly, even if the application has been submitted for registration but has not been accepted yet, the brand name continues to be listed under “Trademark.”

While the use of the trademark label protects an unregistered name, it does not guarantee protection under the trademark law. In order to guarantee safety under the Lanham Act, the owner of the trademark needs to ensure and prove that they were first to use the trademark and that the use of the trademark by other parties will confuse the audience from distinguishing between the good’s source.

Registered ®

Any brand name registered with the USPTO is denoted by the “R” symbol. Being registered allows you to use your trademark in a more superior manner over others and allows you to obtain damages against infringers. Registering a trademark prevents any imitators from bothering you and provides you with a heavy presumption of ownership. It is generally preferred to have a registered trademark over one that is unregistered.

Copyright ©

This “C” symbol, giving the impression of copyright, sends a message to the public saying that the work is copyrighted and the user has ownership of the work. The symbol is not necessary in order to protect your work as it achieves automatic protection upon creation.

Now that you are aware of the nomenclature, you will be able to better identify brand names. Any of the brand names which have not been registered or are waiting for registration are to be termed under the trademark symbol, whereas registered brand names have the “R” symbol right after them. Finally, any work that is copyrighted and requires a visual impression given to the public uses the “C” symbol right around the corner of the work.

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