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What Is a Trademark, Service Mark, and Patent?

A trademark is what you use as a source identifier of the product or goods you offer to the public. When consumers see your products or goods, they instantly recognize your brand as the source of those goods.

A service mark is very similar to a trade mark. Except it doesn’t apply to products or goods, it applies to services. Often times, these to terms are used interchangeably.

A patent is right to exclude others from making using or selling an invention.

While a trademark/service mark protects against others using your NAME/LOGO/SLOGAN/DESIGN associated with your products or services, a patent protects others against making using or selling copies of your products or services under ANY mark.

Patent law is complicated, and every inventor’s situation is unique. SmartUp can connect you with a licensed Patent Attorney who will give you a free consultation and answer your specific questions.

Yuri Eliezer heads the intellectual property practice group at Founders Legal. As an entrepreneur who saw the importance of early-stage patent protection, Yuri founded SmartUp®. Clients he has served include Microsoft, Cisco, Cox, AT&T, General Electric, the Georgia Institute of Technology, and Coca-Cola.

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