Author Archives: Shireen Smith

How to trademark: 6 points you need to know

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Your name is what you use to promote and advertise your business and it’s what your customers use to recommend your product or service. You build up goodwill in the name through using it. Therefore, it makes sense to own the rights in it by registering the name as a trademark as a priority.

Microsoft forced to rebrand following BskyB’s trademark triumph

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While BskyB ceased its own cloud storage service at the end of 2011, it said Microsoft’s product was misleading for users of its continuing digital services, such as Sky Broadband and Sky Go. Microsoft argued it was difficult to…

UGG Trademark Disputes

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Trademarks are territorial, which means you register them country by country wherever you do business. Although this is can be expensive, and it may be tempting when starting out, to think it’s easy enough, in theory, to trade in other countries under a different brand, UGG is an example of what can happen when a trademark is not […]

What is Copyright?

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Copyright is a wide-ranging subject, and relevant to many creative and non-creative industries.  It is arguably the most universal of IP rights, covering written materials, music, art, logos, and computer programs, to name a few.  It protects most visual brand elements, such as logos, packaging and websites, though it may also be possible to register […]

How Small Businesses are Wasting Money on Branding by Failing to Take Account of Legal Principles – Legally Branded Book

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Legally Branded is a new title by Shireen Smith of Azrights Solicitors, which fills a gap in the market by providing accessible, and easy to understand explanations about intellectual property law and brand law to help business owners consider the legal dimension of branding. In the book, Legally Branded, Shireen Smith, founder of Azrights Solicitors, […]

Iconic Brands

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When a brand becomes as iconic as Apple it can get away with potentially reputation damaging incidents which would tarnish a lesser brand. This article on IPKAT  about how Apple has fared following news of its association with Foxconn, a Chinese manufacturer alleged to mistreat its staff,  is interesting for that reason. According to the […]

When to know you need to rebrand

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The importance of the name you give your business was clearly brought home in an episode of Hotel Inspector about the Hotel Weyanoke in Eastbourne. A name that is so difficult to spell, or to pronounce is surely a liability. Quite rightly, the owners were persuaded by the Hotel Inspector to choose some alternative names. Surprisingly, they […]

How Fragile is Reputation

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The recent closure of the News of the World is an example of how quickly brands that are unmasked on social media can lose their reputation and brand value.  Where previously a brand could use a considerable marketing budget to drown out any negative voices, now as Interbrand puts it “people take to Twitter and […]

GOOGLE PLUS – Brand Naming Strategy

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Google’s launch of its social networking site, Google Plus, has caused a lot of attention and speculation in the media.  However, it is not just the site itself that has provoked discussion, but its name too. Google’s decision to create its social media site under the Google brand has been criticized and praised in equal […]

Trademark Infringement and Apple – a familiar story?

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It’s been widely reported that Apple is being sued by iCloud Communications, an Arizona based company, following its announcement about the launch Apple iCloud Services. iCloud Communications’ lawsuit states that Apple is infringing its trademarked name iCloud. Apple has been involved in numerous lawsuits to do with copyright and trademark infringement within the last few […]