Saturday, March 1, 2008

How to Protect Intellectual Property

AngelNetwork stresses the importance of protecting intellectual property. According to the World Intellectual Property Organization, intellectual property is defined as creations of the mind - inventions, literary and artistic works, symbols, names, images, and designs used in commerce. "Protecting intellectual property is essential to success," says Edward Bracken, Co-Founder of

AngelNetwork examines the ways of protecting intellectual property by identifying the four legally defined categories which include: patents, trademarks, copyrights and trade secrets. Patents protect invention ideas for twenty years. Trademarks are defined as a name, phrase, symbol, or sound used in connection with a product or service. Trademarks remain in effect for ten years after being registered however a business does not have to officially register a trademark. AngelNetwork also points out that a business may use the TM symbol to protect their trademark.

A copyright protects written material and artistic expressions. A copyright lasts for the lifetime of the author plus an additional fifty years. Trade secrets are defined as devices, formulas, patterns or compilation of data that grants the user an advantage over their competitors. The trade secret must prove to add value to the company. AngelNetwork offers a plethora of information as a part of its memberships that assist entrepreneurs in making wise business decisions.


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