Do musicians benefit from trademark protection?
Of course they do, as evidenced by a tale recently related in an article discussing why artists - both solo performers and bands - should care about the distinctive and memorable names, slogans and icons that identify them.
The story's bottom line is quickly convened: A group of fans sufficiently psyched to buy tickets for a concert featuring a favored band did just did, and ended up going to a show with another band having precisely the same name.
That spells confusion, which is something we referenced in our June 25 blog post. Consumers can be misled as to source when intellectual property is not properly safeguarded. And, importantly, mark creators and first users can be ripped off by business rivals seeking to reap unfair advantage through infringing actions.
"Being a musician or an artist is a business," notes the above-cited article, which makes it just as important for them to secure trademark protection as for any other enterprise engaged in commerce.
Trademarks automatically receive protection under common law. It is certainly worthwhile, though, for an artist to augment longstanding judicial safeguards with additional protections afforded through formally registering a trademark with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The aforementioned trademark overview duly stresses that registration "entitles the mark owner to an array of remedies that they would not have otherwise."
One such remedy is the ability to recover all unlawful profits collected by an infringer. Mark registrants additionally have customs agents working on their behalf to intercept infringing goods that are circulating internationally.
Trademark registration comes with a caveat, though, as noted in the above article. Because registration is a notably involved and heavily detailed process, taking a do-it-yourself approach is both risky and inadvisable.
Questions regarding trademark registration can be directed to a proven intellectual property attorney, who can help ensure that a mark is properly registered and entitled to maximum legal protection.