What You Need to Trademark Your Personal Name

From The Balance – Small Business:

Want to trademark your name? It can be done, but first, ask yourself why you want to spend the money – and time – to trademark your name. You must also meet specific requirements to trademark your name with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).

A trademark is a piece of intellectual property that allows you to “brand” something so that no one else can copy or use it. It distinguishes your company and its products from everyone else. Don’t confuse a trademark with a copyright; copyrights are for works like books, movies, and videos.

Trademarking your name gives you an additional brand and keeps others from using your name.

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People trademark their names all the time. Actors, authors, sports figures, and other celebrities often trademark their names.

For example, IPWatchdog used the example of Sarah Palin, who has trademarked her name (actually it’s a service mark, not a trademark), The category is “Educational and entertainment services, namely, providing motivational speaking services in the field of politics, culture, business, and values.”

Small Business at Chron.com says, “A person’s name can only be registered as a trademark if it is widely recognized in commerce.”

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Registering your name can provide you with added protection against cybersquatters (people who pick up domain names to confuse people and get money).

Of course, the best reason to trademark your name is to prevent others from using it. For example, Morgan Freeman trademarked his name to prevent it from being used by a company to market its products. Freeman’s trademark is listed in the category “Entertainment services, namely, live, televised, and movie appearances by a professional entertainer.”

Link to the rest at The Balance – Small Business

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