When you are running a business, your success comes down to how others perceive the business and its actions. Public perception can make or break a business. If your business provides a service or a product, you will want to ensure that they are provided to the best of your business’ abilities and meet the expectations of the public. However, what happens when someone else starts putting out products in the market, which appear to be masking as the same as the ones from your business? If the products are of lower quality, customers who accidentally buy the fake product will begin to feel negatively about your business, and its reputation suffers. As such, a major segment of intellectual property law deals with the protection of a business’ brand. It is imperative to ensure that the images, logos, slogans, and etc. of a business are to be used by that business only (or by explicit permission).
Within intellectual property law, patents, trademarks, and copyright exist to provide the owner of said tools certain rights and privileges and the ability to seek action against any violations. For example, if the business has created a specific product and received a patent for said product, another individual or entity cannot make identical copies of that product, sell them, and claim to be the legitimate owners of the product’s design or function. Moreover, trademarks allow for a business to protect its name, logo, and special sayings. Therefore, another company cannot use the same logo as an existing one that has received trademark protection. Only the owner of the trademark can publish and use the logo or name they have trademarked.
Issues of brand protection can be very vital for fashion companies. When a major high fashion designer puts out a new line, fast fashion brands immediately copy those designs and sell similar versions, but for cheaper prices. Given that these incredibly famous designers will have the relevant intellectual property law protections, many fast fashion brands have faced lawsuits for creating designs that are too identical to the original. However, this problem is not unique to just fashion. Therefore, for anyone that has a business, whether small or large, make sure to properly protect your business’ brand.