First Anniversary: IP Lessons from Spear IP

This week, Spear IP celebrates its first anniversary. From fashion, to event planning, to technology and beyond, Spear IP has had the pleasure of assisting its fabulous clients with their intellectual-property, contractual, and business-related needs. This post takes a look back at the IP lessons learned from the Spear IP Blog in the last year.

General IP Lessons

If you are running a business, chances are intellectual property (or “IP”) has cropped up in some form or another. This year, the Spear IP Blog has provided insight on IP planning for a new business, things to think about when starting an e-mail marketing campaign,  using client materials in your marketing materials, and trade secrets, including recipe and food trade secrets, and updates on the changes in trade secret law.

Contracts

In addition to IP, businesses new and old sometimes struggle with contracts, their meaning, and whether a contract is necessary. This year, we’ve discussed the anatomy of a Tennessee non-compete agreement, common contract myths, and contracts for visual artists. Spear IP has also released its Contract Template Marketplace (which currently includes industry-specific event planner contract templates and visual artist contracts for both commissioned artwork and the sale of artwork).

Trademark & Branding

Trademarks appear in just about every industry’s branding. This year’s IP lessons have included the difference between trademark and copyright, the purpose of a trademark search, counterfeiting and trademarks in the fashion industry, the importance of policing a trademark, using a descriptive trademark, trademarks and creative spelling, and using a personal name as a trademark.

Copyright & Creativity

Copyright law applies to creative works (literature, music, architecture, visual art, and so on). IP lessons pertaining to copyright law thus far have included the benefits to registering a copyright, copyright protection for jewelry, the effect of using independent contractors for the creation of artistic works, and copyright protection in the fashion industry context.

Technology

One Facebook status or Instagram post at a time, we all interact with technology daily. But what about tech companies and developers? In the last year, the Spear IP Blog has touched upon legal lessons for app and website providers (remember Peeple?), the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (or “COPPA”) and its impact on building a website or app for kids, and a lesson on terms of use, or why your “Message to Facebook” status doesn’t work.

The Point: In short, the Spear IP Blog has provided education on various topics in IP, entrepreneurship, fashion, and contracts. The most valuable lesson, however, has come from experiencing the importance of relationships and support when starting and growing a business. I am thankful for each friend, acquaintance, client, and professional colleague that has provided guidance, applause, and the opportunity to grow throughout this last year and I look forward to many more!