trademark toolkit from spear ip

Trademark Toolkit: An Educational Resource

It’s no secret that trademark is one of my favorite topics. Trademarks are everywhere we look — from your Apple TV home screen to your Pinterest feed. In this trademark toolkit, we’ll talk about what exactly is a trademark, the nitty gritty on trademark searches, and things like domain names and trademark registration. Of course, this is educational. If you have a specific legal question, please … Continue reading →

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Trademark Scams and How to Avoid Them

Becoming the owner of a registered trademark has its perks. Plus, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office mails you a fancy certificate with a gold seal. In recent years, though, along with that certificate, the USPTO started sending out warnings. Warnings of trademark scams.

Usually sent on an orange piece of paper along with the registration certificate, the notice warns of “misleading offers and notices from private companies.” The … Continue reading →

A Legal Checklist for Selling on Etsy

Etsy is the first place that pops into mind when I want to find a special gift or something created by a small business owner. Want to open up shop yourself? This month’s blog post introduces Spear IP’s Essential Legal Checklist for Selling on Etsy.

Here’s a brief description of the topics you should expect from the Essential Legal Checklist for Selling on Etsy.

Business Structure

A lot of folks find themselves weighing the pros and cons of sole proprietorship versus something more … Continue reading →

how to choose a strong trademark spear ip

How to Choose a Strong Trademark

What is a strong trademark? The main thing to know about a strong trademark is that it enjoys a lot of trademark protection. (Compared to a weak trademark, which isn’t as protectable.) Put differently, a strong trademark is not “cooler” than a weak trademark, it’s just easier to police and protect. This is because of some little legal terms: “distinctiveness” and “secondary meaning.” So how do you choose a strong trademark? It helps to understand the characteristics of strong and … Continue reading →

Spear IP Third Anniversary Year Four

And Now for Year Four

Wow! It’s hard to wrap my head around the fact that Spear IP celebrates its third anniversary this month. Here’s a look back at the great opportunities year three brought with it, and a peek at what’s in store for year number four.

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Does Copyright Law Apply to My Business?

You’re vaguely familiar with the concept of copyright law. It’s for fine artists — musicians, painters, filmmakers — right? Yes, but copyright law can apply to so much more. This post is a quick review of what copyright law protects and some of the non-traditional content that might fall under the umbrella of copyright protection.

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What the SCOTUS Sales Tax Ruling Really Means

Last week (specifically, on Thursday, June 21, 2018), the Supreme Court ruled on a South Dakota law relating to the collection of sales tax for online purchases. Cue a frenzy of brands and online retailers trying to decipher what this SCOTUS sales tax ruling really means. Here’s a breakdown of the decision.

Client Query: How Do I Know If the GDPR Applies to Me?

You’ve noticed it, right? You’ve gotten bombarded with emails from all of the different services that you use. Pinterest, Etsy, GoDaddy, Instagram, Slack…they’re all updating their terms of service to reflect new privacy practices. But why? If you’re any sort of online entrepreneur, you know the answer. It’s the General Data Protection Regulation (or “GDPR”) coming out of the EU, set to go into effect on May 25, 2018. The GDPR is a new set of standards established by the … Continue reading →

Protecting Your Pod Podcast Guest Contract Spear IP Maria Spear Ollis intellectual property detroit nashville lawyer

Protecting Your Pod[cast]: The Podcast Guest Contract

There’s so much anticipation and planning that goes into launching a podcast. The name, the graphics, the episode lineup… all of these things are the “fun part.” A Podcast Guest Contract might be the furthest thing from your mind. But what’s not fun? Getting into a legal tiff with a podcast guest. That’s why you might consider adding “podcast guest contracts” to your pre-launch checklist. Below is a (non-exhaustive!) list of what should be included in a solid Podcast Guest … Continue reading →