Thursday, August 31, 2006

Starting a Business Series: I Want to Start a Travel Agency

The best routes to take are to research the process of starting a business as well as the industry you're interested in.

I recommend checking out the Small Business Administration
, Entrepreneur, Start Up Journal, Wall Street Journal & Nolo’s Starting a Business –
Resource Center. All four are great informational resources for the new/small business owner.

Associations may be a good avenue to explore. These organizations will address many of the thoughts, questions and concerns you'll inevitably have as well as many you haven't anticipated yet.

Research, research, research – this cannot be stressed enough. Read as much as you can about the industry. Here are some book titles that are relevant:

There are plenty of free informational resources out there. Here's just a handful:

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Starting a Business Series: Starting a Cleaning/Janitorial Business

The best routes to take are to research the process of starting a business as well as the industry you're interested in.

I recommend checking out the Small Business Administration
, Entrepreneur, Start Up Journal, Wall Street Journal & Nolo’s Starting a Business –
Resource Center. All four are great informational resources for the new/small business owner.

Associations may be a good avenue to explore. These organizations will address many of the thoughts, questions and concerns you'll inevitably have as well as many you haven't anticipated yet.

Research, research, research – this cannot be stressed enough. Read as much as you can about the industry. Here are some book titles that are relevant:

There are plenty of free informational resources out there. Here's just a handful:

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Starting a Business Series: Become a Mortgage Broker

The best routes to take are to research the process of starting a business as well as the industry you're interested in.

I recommend checking out the Small Business Administration
, Entrepreneur, Start Up Journal, Wall Street Journal & Nolo’s Starting a Business –
Resource Center. All four are great informational resources for the new/small business owner.

Associations may be a good avenue to explore. These organizations will address many of the thoughts, questions and concerns you'll inevitably have as well as many you haven't anticipated yet.

Research, research, research – this cannot be stressed enough. Read as much as you can about the industry. Here are some book titles that are relevant:

There are plenty of free informational resources out there. Here's just a handful:

Monday, August 28, 2006

Starting a Business Series: Starting a Staffing/Recruiting Agency

The best routes to take are to research the process of starting a business as well as the industry you're interested in.

I recommend checking out the Small Business Administration
, Entrepreneur, Start Up Journal, Wall Street Journal & Nolo’s Starting a Business –
Resource Center. All four are great informational resources for the new/small business owner.

Associations may be a good avenue to explore. These organizations will address many of the thoughts, questions and concerns you'll inevitably have as well as many you haven't anticipated yet.

Research, research, research – this cannot be stressed enough. Read as much as you can about the industry. Here are some book titles that are relevant:

There are plenty of free informational resources out there. Here's just a handful:

Friday, August 25, 2006

Starting a Business Series: How to Start a Consulting Business

The best routes to take are to research the process of starting a business as well as the industry you're interested in.

I recommend checking out the Small Business Administration
, Entrepreneur, Start Up Journal, Wall Street Journal &Nolo’s Starting a Business – Resource Center. All four are great informational resources for the new/small business owner.

Associations may be a good avenue to explore. These organizations will address many of the thoughts, questions and concerns you'll inevitably have as well as many you haven't anticipated yet.

Research, research, research – this cannot be stressed enough. Read as much as you can about the industry. Here are some book titles that are relevant:

There are plenty of free informational resources out there. Here's just a handful:

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Starting a Business Series: I Want to Become a Virtual Assistant

The best routes to take are to research the process of starting a business as well as the industry you're interested in.

I recommend checking out the Small Business Administration
, Entrepreneur, Start Up Journal, Wall Street Journal & Nolo’s Starting a Business –
Resource Center. All four are great informational resources for the new/small business owner.

Associations may be a good avenue to explore. These organizations will address many of the thoughts, questions and concerns you'll inevitably have as well as many you haven't anticipated yet.

Research, research, research – this cannot be stressed enough. Read as much as you can about the industry. Here are some book titles that are relevant:

There are plenty of free informational resources out there. Here's just a handful:

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Starting a Business Series: Start an Import/Export Business

Yesterday's post signaled the beginning (or rather I should say, continuing) of our Starting a Business Series. For the next few weeks, I'll post some handy links & information about starting different types of businesses.

On to the post…

The best routes to take are to research the process of starting a business as well as the industry you're interested in.

I recommend checking out the Small Business Administration
, Entrepreneur, Start Up Journal, Wall Street Journal & Nolo’s Starting a Business –
Resource Center. All four are great informational resources for the new/small business owner.

Associations may be a good avenue to explore. These organizations will address many of the thoughts, questions and concerns you'll inevitably have as well as many you haven't anticipated yet.

Research, research, research – this cannot be stressed enough. Read as much as you can about the industry. Here are some book titles that are relevant:

There are plenty of free informational resources out there. Here's just a handful:

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Starting a Business Series: I Want to Open a Daycare

The best routes to take are to research the process of starting a business as well as the industry you're interested in.

I recommend checking out the Small Business Administration
, Entrepreneur, Start Up Journal, Wall Street Journal & Nolo’s Starting a Business –
Resource Center. All four are great informational resources for the new/small business owner.

Associations may be a good avenue to explore. These organizations will address many of the thoughts, questions and concerns you'll inevitably have as well as many you haven't anticipated yet.

National Association of Childcare Professionals

National Childcare Association

USA Childcare

To find licensing information for your state, check out the National Resource Center for Health & Safety in Child Care.

Research, research, research – this cannot be stressed enough. Read as much as you can about the industry. Here are some book titles that are relevant:

There are plenty of free informational resources out there. Here's just a handful:

Friday, August 18, 2006

Trademark News: Google ® Takes Steps to Avoid Going the Way of Aspirin & Zippers

The mighty search engine, Google ®, is doing what all trademark owners should be doing - monitoring and protecting their trademark.

In all actuality, getting people to stop using the trademark Google ® as a verb is going to be an uphill, never-ending battle. The mark has become so pervasive throughout Internet-speak, pop culture and every day usage. But, Google's ® doing what they have to do – to protect their brand, they have to take these necessary steps to ensure that their mark does not become diluted.

This has happened to trademarks in the past. Recognize any of these?

Aspirin – If only Felix Hoffman had been able to convince Bayer ® to file for a trademark and not just the patent.

Bikini – "Drawings of bikini-like suits have been found on wall paintings dating back to 1600 B.C." Jacques Heim and Louis Reard may have recreated the bikini but they sure didn't protect the name.

Escalator – This to-and-fro device had an incarnation as a ride at Coney Island back in 1895.

Zipper – The first manifestation of the modern day zipper, AKA the 'Clasp Locker' looked almost frightening.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

A few changes of note...

Besides some outward changes (thank you Blogger Templates!), I've also added a few handy-dandy features.

My Links:

Contains links to Our Home Page, the articles I've written and my Yahoo ® Answers ® profile.

Trademark Related Links:

Of course, the USPTO is there but I also posted some handy links within the USPTO's pages and an invaluable resource link to Nolo.

Books, books & books:

The next three sets of links are fantastic book titles relating to trademarks, other forms of intellectual property and starting a business.

Monday, August 14, 2006

We'll be back on track tomorrow!

I'm updating the TradeMark Express blog today. A new post will be up tomorrow. Happy Monday!

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Trademark News: The "Redskins" ® Trademark Debate Continues…

It was announced yesterday that the debate over the "disparaging" terminology, "Redskins" ®, has not ceased. You may recall the famous 1992 petition to cancel the "Redskins" ® registrations that were headed by Suzan Shown Harjo, a "poet, writer, lecturer, curator and policy advocate."

This is one trademark debate that I have strong, personal opinions about and I'm personally rooting for the six young American Indian people as well as the American Indian community as a whole. And here's why:

1) The term and anything similar to it is "disparaging." The root of the word is from the Middle English word, disparagen, which means to degrade. Racial slurs by their very nature degrade.

2) Based on the USPTO's description, it appears that these marks should not stand.

3) The degradation of any person or community really should not be acceptable in any sense, and this includes commercial endeavors. And it's up to all of us to ensure that.

This is not a matter of "political correctness" going overboard as one is wont to hear when this debate arises; it is a matter of right and wrong.

Again, this is just my own personal opinion and I'm not a lawyer so the debate will be decided by those "in the know."

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Trademark News: Gene Simmons versus Jayne County: The Electric Chairs™ Trademark Debate

Gene Simmons' son, Nick has a band called Nick Simmons and the Electric Chairs. RuPaul noticed something not quite right.

While Jayne County & company may not have a trademark on the name, she should still have first use rights based on her Common-Law usage.

This brings up a good point and a question I get asked often – how do I protect my band's name? Well, here's a prime example – trademark it!

The USPTO has this to say:

"Is the name of a band a trademark?

It depends on how it is used. A band name may function as a service mark for entertainment services in the nature of performances by a musical group if it is used to identify and distinguish the service of providing live performances (see TMEP §1301.02(b), or as a trademark for a series of musical recordings (see TMEP §1202.09(a))."

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Trademark News: Trademark Owners - The USPTO Inbox is Heavily Protected

It was announced today that Tumbleweed ® Communications Corp. will be protecting the USPTO's inbox with all sorts of handy-dandy features in order to ensure the safety of their systems.

What does that mean for trademarks owners and applicants? Probably, hopefully, nothing. However, since the USPTO's inbox is that much more heavily secured, it'll be up to each applicant to ensure that their messages are getting to the right party at the USPTO. And it's up to each applicant to ensure that they're getting their messages from the USPTO.

The easiest way to go about this is to:

1) Check your status here by entering in your 8-digit serial number

2) Scroll, scroll, scroll until you see the Status section. Here you will see the most up-to-date information pertaining to your mark.

a. If you sent the USPTO an email, it will say Communication Received from Applicant

b. If the USPTO sent you an email, it will say {Name of Document, e.g. Non-Final Action)} e-mailed

If you sent an email to the USPTO or should have received an email from the USPTO but did NOT, take these steps:

1) If you've been assigned to an examining attorney, contact them. This information can be found on your status page.

2) If you have NOT been assigned to an examining attorney, contact the Trademark Assistance Center at "800-786-9199 or 571-272-9250, Monday through Friday (except federal holidays) from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time."

Monday, August 07, 2006

Trademark News: A Lawsuit with a Twist

Labels such as Sony BMG ®, Universal ®, Warner ® & EMI ® have filed a lawsuit against LimeWire ®.

The damages being sought are extreme, to say the least – "$150,000 for every time a copyrighted song was downloaded without permission." Let's see, the average album has about 12 songs on it – that's $1,800,000 for the downloading of ONE album ONE time.

This is the first case where a company, not individual users, could be sued for copyright infringement in respect to file sharing. The ramifications from this particular case will be groundbreaking & will, undoubtedly, affect copyright law on all sorts of levels.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Trademark News: Mon Dieu!

A new French copyright law could land you in the big house and out of €500,000 or 640 THOUSAND US Dollars!

I'm all for intellectual property protection as much as the next gal but that seems a bit extreme. Of course, the likelihood of such fines actually being enforced is more than likely slim to none, unless the violations are of an extremely malicious nature.

This reminds me a bit of the whole Metallica vs Napster hubbub of 2000, in that there's clear & defined sides and both make valid points. Simply put, there's those that love music & want to share it with others and there's those that worked hard to create that music & just want to get paid.

This debate will rage on for years to come...

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Trademark News: Zizou Strikes Again…Sorta

Football (that's soccer to US folks) fans bemoan the fact that the World Cup ® has come and gone for another four years. Anyone who watched the final game between Italy and France could really only talk about one thing: the headbutt heard and seen 'round the world.

Well, someone has gone and filed for a trademark for this most famous of headbutts.

I wonder how Zinedine feels about this…

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Trademark News: Going Surfing! Huntington Beach IS Surf City USA ®

On May 9, 2006, the Huntington Beach Conference and Visitors Bureau was granted a Federal trademark for Surf City USA ®. Today it was announced that the Bureau will be licensing their trademark for a wide variety of usage, including clothing, credit unions and bicycles.

The possibilities this opens for other cities is quite wide. Adding the licensing of trademarks to a city's economic portfolio could create exciting and interesting waves of revenue, especially for smaller or less well-known cities.

Imagine if you will…

  • Bonnaroo ® is a 4 day music festival held every year in Manchester, TN. Slogans like Manchester – We Rock or Manchester – We Jam. Even a somewhat obscure one like Manchester – A Really Good Time; Bonnaroo is a Cajun slang term for, you guessed it – a really good time.

Huntington Beach or rather Surf City USA ® may just be the first swell of a fantastic ride for cities and their trademarks.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Trademark Info: How can Coke ® use Pepsi ® in their Commercials?

This is called nominative use or comparative advertising. Here's what
Wiki says:

"Nominative use is a term a defense to trademark infringement in the United States, by which a person may use the trademark of another as a reference to describe the other product, or to compare it to their own."

Check
here for further information.