Alexander and Peter delve into the intellectual property side of corporate governance with a discussion of trademarks. What is a trademark? How do I get one? What can and can’t be a mark? They explain what it means to have “the exclusive right to use a particular identifier,” why your business might want that exclusive right, and what those identifiers might look like.
Whether you want to register your mark with the USPTO or at the state level, Peter and Alexander describe the process and cost for obtaining and maintaining exclusive rights to your mark, including the importance of providing notice as well as the protections that having those rights offers. They also highlight some of the limitations that prevent someone from trademarking just anything as well as how far the boundaries of the rights to your mark extend. Finally, they walk you through the different types of marks, from “generic” to “fanciful,” discuss the potential for “genericide,” and emphasize the long-term benefits of trademarking.