written by | October 13, 2022

Guide on ™ Symbol, Registered Trademark®, and Copyright©

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Table of Content


Most company owners are unaware of their company's most significant asset. It is their brand name on which their company's existence and reputation are entirely dependent. The market is crowded, and capturing the attention of the target customer is only the first step. Customers are becoming increasingly brand conscious these days. As a result, trademark and copyright have become the most powerful influences on consumer purchasing decisions.

There are three types of intellectual property that you can register.

  • Patents describe how something works or how it is made.
  • Logos protect a product or a component of a product's overall visual appearance.
  • Trademarks are the symbols that distinguish your goods or services from those of your competitors.
  • Copyright protects works of authorship of an original artistic or literary work.

Copyrights, trademarks, and registrations are legal ways to protect original ideas from being stolen and used as the property of someone else. Although each one has a similar purpose, each is quite different in use and definition. 

Did you know? Trademark protects brands, logos, and slogans, and a copyright protects original works of authorship.

Also read: What Is a Business Advisor, Meaning, Roles & Average Salary

What is a Trademark?

A trademark is any word, phrase, symbol, or design that helps to identify and distinguish goods or services from those of its competitors. A trademark is a brand name or logo associated with a company's goods, products, or services. Customers who purchase products or services recognise them by their brand. A trademark can consist of words, numbers, designs, or a combination of these.

A trademark is a name, symbol, or mark that differentiates one product or brand from other similar products or brands. It can also be used metaphorically to describe something specific to a person or thing, as in "the chef's signature dish." The term "trademark," which was first used in the mid-1500s, literally means "the mark (as in a logo)." 

Trademarks protect words, graphics, symbols, and other expressions associated with your brand identity. The TM symbol tells consumers that a specific brand or expression has already been claimed for protected usage by someone and is awaiting approval. The trademark symbol is invalid mainly because of its limited usability, in contrast to a registered trademark.

Trademarks are frequently claimed with the ™ superscript.  You can find that symbol almost anywhere, from supermarket aisles to hotels to social media handles. In business, it is used to show that the person who created and is marketing a product or service believes it is unique. 

There is one disclaimer: TM symbol does not always imply that the product or service is a unique registered product. The presence of the trademark superscript could simply imply that the claimed product is in the process of being a government-registered trademark.

Trademark- Purposes and Functions  

• Determine the source of the product or service. 

• To differentiate the proprietor's product or service from others. 

• Ensure the standard and quality of the product or service 

• Ensure the quality of the product or service

Types of Trademarks that Can be Registered in India

The following are some examples of trademarks that can be registered in India.

  • Words and Service Trademarks

These indicate marks that have been used to identify products and services of any company.

  • Shape Trademarks

Shape marks are marks that match the appearance of the shapes of a company's products or packaging. 

  • Symbols and Logos

Logos and symbols are printed or painted figures, designs, or characters that indicate the name of a company, service, or product.

  • Collective Trademarks

These marks are used when the marks are associated with a group of people or services. The organization owns the trademark, but multiple people can use it.

  • Series Trademarks

Series marks are registered marks to be used before or after a chain of products that share a common suffix, prefix, or symbol.

  • The Certification Symbol

This certifies that the company has met the standards and quality of its products. 

TM” Trademark

A trademark is a word, symbol, design, or phrase that denotes a specific product and differentiates it from similar products. A trademark is primarily used to identify the origin or source of goods, products, or services. A trademark in India serves the following purposes: It distinguishes the item as well as its origin. It proposes to guarantee the product's quality. It advertises the product by representing it.

® Registered trademark

® symbol indicates that this word, phrase or logo is a registered trademark for the product or service. It can be used only if the Trademark is Registered by the owner or licensee. It also must only be used in regions which possess a valid trademark registration.

Copyrights

Copyrights protect “original works of authorship,” such as writings, art, architecture, and music. It is the exclusive right to make a copy or copies of one's original work and sell them in the market. A copyright prevents you from passing off any artists creativity as your own. What validates a work as copyrighted? The work must be both creative and tangible.

Also read: Successful Retail Business Ideas - Which is the Best Retail Business in India?

The R Symbol Meaning and C Symbol

Despite the fact that we are accustomed to seeing these symbols everywhere, we are unaware of their various uses and applications. Besides that, we also have no idea how to write them. This is why we have created this quick guide, to avoid any confusion and, most importantly, to teach you how to write and use the TrademarkTM, Registered Trademark®, and Copyright©.

What is the R ® Symbol?

This symbol is reserved for registered trademarks that protect both goods and services. As a result, you can use this symbol with your trademark if you have an official certificate of registration of the trademark in the country where you are using the ®, e.g Nike and Walmart are two companies that use this symbol.

The ® symbol meaning is that a product is a registered trademark, meaning the brand name or logo is protected by intellectual property rightsAn approved trademark or servicemark by the authorities is denoted by the ® symbol, which indicates that the trademark is registered and eligible to enjoy additional protection. A registered trademark is a symbol, logo, word, slogan, or company name. It protects your status and stops other businesses from trespassing on your intellectual assets. It has been specifically stated in laws that using the ® symbol without receiving approval for a trademarked logo or expression is illegal and will result in severe penalties against the brand or business. This is because if you have a dispute without the symbol, you will lose your right to recover lost profits and monetary damages unless you can prove that the infringer had actual knowledge of your registered trademark prior to his activity.

Trademarks protect the words, graphics, symbols, and other expressions that are associated with your brand identity. The TM symbol notifies others that a specific brand has been claimed for protected usage and is awaiting approval.  

The Benefits of Trademark Registration

Registration is prima facie evidence of trademark proprietorship. It grants the exclusive right to use the trademark in relation to goods and services and the right to take legal action in the event of any infringement. The registered proprietor may assign or licence the trademark like any other property. The registered owner can enjoy the goodwill associated with the registered trademark forever if the mark is renewed regularly.

The C Symbol for Copyright © 

The copyright symbol is used to inform the public that the work is unique and cannot be reproduced without the owner's permission owing to the legal and moral rights that the law bestows on the creator.

It is a globally recognised symbol, but since the Berne convention, it is no longer required to use the symbol to obtain protection. The © is a substitute sign for the word copyright. It is usually followed by the year of the publication or creation and the owner’s name. Today, the ‘C’ symbol is no longer required to protect your work as it’s automatically protected when the work is created.

Copyright reserves the right to prohibit any subsequent use of copyrighted artwork, content, photographs, videos, literature, and so on by anyone other than the person who copyrighted it. The symbol for Copyright has been abbreviated. It is usually represented by the name of the copyright holder and the year the copyright was applied for or approved. India is a member of the Berne Convention, hence, it must comply with the copyright provisions. Without intellectual protection, your brand faces the risk of being redirected to forged brands, removing the legal rights of the actual owner of the brand to sue the defaulter and seek compensation.

It grants the exclusive right of the creator of the work to specifically copy, reproduce, or publish the work for monetary gain or otherwise. It doesn’t specifically require registration of the copyright. 

Why Does a Company Require Both Trademark and Copyright?

A trademark protects logos and slogans at the most basic level, whereas copyright protects creative intellectual design. However, short phrases commonly found in logos are not protected by copyright; they are protected by trademark. This naturally raises the question of why a company would require both in a logo design. If the logo is extremely ornate and a unique artistic creation, it may be eligible for both trademark and copyright protection.

Also read: What Is Quotation in Business? Meaning, Format, Template & Example

Conclusion

Trademarks TM, R, and C are commonly used symbols, but most of us are unaware of their significance and application. These symbols frequently intrigue the interest of the general public, who wonder why most brands or artists use them with their logos, names, or devices, and in creative works.  The TM symbol and rights symbol ® have different meanings. TM is used during the registration process. When the registration process is completed, the symbol ® is used.

As a result, we cannot treat them similarly because they are distinct from one another. However, trademark registration is also important because it safeguards the brand and supports the company in pursuing legal action if an unauthorised person is using the mark. No legal action is possible until the mark is registered under the Trade Mark Act of 1999, so it may be used by anyone. Copyright gives the creator the ownership of his creative property and protects it. 

Hence, this blog has been created to generate awareness and educate the general public about the significance of these symbols and processes and the protection of intellectual property rights.
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FAQs

Q: What is the duration of registration of a trademark in India?

Ans:

Under the Trademark Act 1999, the duration of trademark registration in India is ten years. The renewal for a further 10-year period will require prescribed renewal fees. Even though the regular duration of a trademark is 10 years from the date of registration, it may vary in some states.

Q: What is the term of protection for copyright?

Ans:

The general rule is that copyright lasts for 60 years. In the case of original literary, dramatic, musical, and artistic works, the 70-year period is counted from the year following the death of the author.

Q: What is the difference between TM and C and ® symbols?

Ans:

The trademark symbol TM has no legal significance or backing. The ® mark is legally protected and is punishable if copied by another person. The copyright protects original work of authorship.

Q: Is it possible to use the trademark symbol without registering?

Ans:

The (TM) symbol has no legal significance. You may use the symbol on any of your company's trademarks without registering them. The TM symbol is most commonly used on a new phrase, logo, word, or design that a company intends to register.

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The information, product and services provided on this website are provided on an “as is” and “as available” basis without any warranty or representation, express or implied. Khatabook Blogs are meant purely for educational discussion of financial products and services. Khatabook does not make a guarantee that the service will meet your requirements, or that it will be uninterrupted, timely and secure, and that errors, if any, will be corrected. The material and information contained herein is for general information purposes only. Consult a professional before relying on the information to make any legal, financial or business decisions. Use this information strictly at your own risk. Khatabook will not be liable for any false, inaccurate or incomplete information present on the website. Although every effort is made to ensure that the information contained in this website is updated, relevant and accurate, Khatabook makes no guarantees about the completeness, reliability, accuracy, suitability or availability with respect to the website or the information, product, services or related graphics contained on the website for any purpose. Khatabook will not be liable for the website being temporarily unavailable, due to any technical issues or otherwise, beyond its control and for any loss or damage suffered as a result of the use of or access to, or inability to use or access to this website whatsoever.
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Disclaimer :
The information, product and services provided on this website are provided on an “as is” and “as available” basis without any warranty or representation, express or implied. Khatabook Blogs are meant purely for educational discussion of financial products and services. Khatabook does not make a guarantee that the service will meet your requirements, or that it will be uninterrupted, timely and secure, and that errors, if any, will be corrected. The material and information contained herein is for general information purposes only. Consult a professional before relying on the information to make any legal, financial or business decisions. Use this information strictly at your own risk. Khatabook will not be liable for any false, inaccurate or incomplete information present on the website. Although every effort is made to ensure that the information contained in this website is updated, relevant and accurate, Khatabook makes no guarantees about the completeness, reliability, accuracy, suitability or availability with respect to the website or the information, product, services or related graphics contained on the website for any purpose. Khatabook will not be liable for the website being temporarily unavailable, due to any technical issues or otherwise, beyond its control and for any loss or damage suffered as a result of the use of or access to, or inability to use or access to this website whatsoever.